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The Amazing Goji Berry Also Known as Lycium Barbarum and What Makes Goji Berries so Amazing

lycium barbarum aka goji berriesIt's a tiny red berry, the most potent of which are found in Asian growing regions, and yet it caused quite a stir in the natural sciences community a few years back when it was first being explored.

Celebrated for centuries in Asian cultures as a source of energy and longevity, the goji berry made headlines in 2006 and 2007 in western cultures.

Goji is quickly becoming well-known in the functional foods industry, as well.

What Makes Goji Berries so Amazing?

So what is it that makes goji berries so amazing that they rank on our Superfruits of the World list here at Best Liquid Vitamins?

For starters, let's take a quick look at just a small part of its nutritional make-up. The most potent goji berry plants contain:

  • 19 amino acids (the building blocks of protein) including all 8 essential for life
  • 21 trace minerals (including germanium - rarely found in foods)
  • more protein than whole wheat (13%)
  • a complete spectrum of antioxidant carotenoids, including beta-carotene (a better source than even carrots!) and zeaxanthin (for eyes)
  • they contain the richest source of carotenoids of all known foods
  • Vitamin C (at higher levels - 5 times by weight than found in oranges)
  • B-Complex Vitamins (for converting food into energy)
  • Vitamin E (very rarely found in fruits, usually only found in grains, seeds, and nuts)
  • Beta-Sitosterol
  • essential fatty acids
  • Cyperone
  • Solavetivone (a powerful anti-fungal and anti-bacterial compound)
  • Physalin (look it up - you'll be amazed)
  • Betaine 
  • And more!

Here's just a small snapshot of the exciting health benefits lycium barbarum can deliver -- just 4 (out of more than 63) independent clinical studies already completed:

Enhanced Immune Response - Clinical Study

Anti-Fatigue Effects - Clinical Study

Weight Loss - Clinical Study

Free-Radical Prevention - Clinical Study

Why Did it Take so Long for us to Hear About the Goji Berry?

goji berry herb profileThe earliest known reference to the goji berry in medical journals/texts dates all the way back to the first century A.D. when it was extolled as a superior herb in the Divine Farmer's Handbook of Natural Medicine (Shen Nong Ben Cao), perhaps the most important text in the history of Chinese medicine.

So what took it so long to gain respect in Western cultures?

Great question! For starters, imagine how long it took to find the original strain of berry... next, the need to develop and apply the right technology to find the right berries... and then there is the harvesting itself, which can be a complicated process.

The truth is as far back as 1936, British explorer Colonel Reginald Schomberg (1880 - 1958) may have made the original important observation:

"...there is such a direct relationship between the sun and fruit. Fruit, more obviously than other foods, ripens and colors in the sun. Sunlight is the carrier of the sun's quality. Through it that quality comes direct from the great orb of our being. It stores itself in sun-bathed food, as in a minor way electricity is stored in a battery. The eating of fruit releases the sun's quality in its most direct and least interfered-with form."

The unfortunate thing for Schomberg is that he never presented his theory in a scientific treatise, but merely described it in the notebooks of his Himalayan expeditions. Consequently, his scientific observations went undiscovered for many years until they were recently unearthed.

What is the Schomberg effect? Simply put, foods with a high Schomberg effect are said to be able to keep us healthier by facilitating the transfer of energy.

When scientists first found, then tested, a variant of Lycium barbarum known as goji, they were astounded. The Schomberg effect measured off the scale.

Additional Resources for Goji Berries

Additional Resources/Links for Goji Berries