Blueberry season has arrived in southwest Virginia and so today I'm here to share with you some top tips for picking the best fresh berries. Blueberries have a multitude of health benefits - they're low in calories, high in nutrients including antioxidants, fiber, Vitamin K, Vitamin C and Manganese. Of course, blueberries are best known for their antioxidant value, having one of the highest antioxidant values among fruits, vegetables, spices and seasonings out there.
I am all about buying local where possible, and a few days ago I had the pleasure of visiting 3 Birds Berry Farm in Blacksburg to check out the farm, pick my gallon of blueberries and "pick" the brain of farm manager William Sambello regarding his top tips selecting and storing fresh berries. Not only was he a wealth of information, it was clear from his interactions with customers that he's truly passionate about what he does and dedicated to giving customers the berry best experience possible!
How you store your berries can make a difference in their quality and how long they will last.
While this post mainly refers to blueberries, many of the concepts also apply to other types of berries. Blueberry season extends from June until August, Blackberry season July until August and Raspberry season from July until early September, so there's still plenty of time ahead this summer to stock up on fresh berries! Locals of the NRV- for the most up to date picking times and more great information about berry picking, visit the 3 Birds Berry Farm website. Special thanks to farm manager William Sambello for his time in sharing his knowledge for this post, and all the time and dedication towards his berry farm so that we can enjoy plentiful locally grown berries!
Be sure to check out my upcoming RECIPE post on Monday for a delicious cool treat to put your berries to good use!
Disclaimer: No compensation was received for this post., although I am always a fan of promoting local businesses and FRESH foods. All thoughts and reviews are my own.
Kristen Chang is Registered Dietitian Nutritionist (RDN), Certified Specialist in Sports Dietetics (CSSD) and triathlete residing in southwest Virginia with her husband and dogs. Follow along as she shares favorite fueling recipes, general wellness and sport nutrition tips and stories from her athletic endeavors.
Another year has flown by, which means it's time to sit back and reflect on the past season. It has been a season of challenge in many regards, and most definitely not the season I had hoped or planned for. Thinking back to my coaching meeting in January, coach Jim and I had discussed taking things to the next level and I set some pretty high goals for myself. That remained the plan through June, until I through a complete 180 by dropping Chattanooga and deciding to focus on my health. I can vividly remember that day, sitting next to the pool after a short workout when coach asked if Chattanooga was still in the cards. I don't remember whether or not I actually responded, but I do remember the emptiness and defeat I felt in that moment knowing in my heart that the answer was no. I consider myself a "fighter"... being Italian makes me stubborn to the core and I am very loyal to the commitments that I make. However, in that moment God was calling me to let go of my own personal plans and trust in Him instead. As humbling and difficult as it was to walk away from Ironman training this past season, I'm incredibly glad that I did.Hearty Miso Soup
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