For some unknown reason, these berries stand in the shadow of the ever popular blueberry, and there's no reason for it. Many varieties of blackberries have more antioxidant power and a lower glycemic load than the common blueberry. Another interesting fact is their position in the top ten as a natural source of fiber.
Knowing these tidbits has me favoring the black over the blue in recent days.
Animal studies have shown that the anthocyanin found in blackberries has twice the antioxidant power of vitamin C. It is also known to boost cognitive function, maintain a healthy liver, prevent cancer, reduce high cholesterol, fight obesity, improve vision, and keep the heart healthy. I think everyone should be increasing their intake of berries.
Since blackberries only last a few days once plucked from the shrub. Be sure to store them in the refrigerator or freeze them right away. Surprisingly, freezing them preserves much of their nutrient value, and even more so, if they're dusted with granulated or powdered sugar, vitamin C powder or pectin powder which slows the rate of oxidation. If you choose to freeze them at home, spread them out in a single layer on a cookie sheet and place them in the freezer for several hours until frozen. This way you can transfer them to a freezer bag without them clumping together.
Not everyone eats frozen fruit. I think it takes away from the flavor. What surprised me most when learning about the thawing process of fruits is that the longer they take to thaw, the more nutrients they lose. Apparently thawing in the microwave is recommended. For the record, I'm not really suggesting that. I prefer to thaw mine in iced water.
Be sure to enjoy blackberries several times a week to reap the benefits they offer.