Natural Nordic berries

Natural Nordic berries

Natural Nordic berries are a great source  of natural nutrition and Phenolic compounds from the natural Nordic ingredients.  The primary one’s are the Nordic berries, herbs, and mushrooms from the Nordic land environment.  There are also vast fish stocks in the freshwater creeks, rivers, ponds, and lakes.

The modern Industrialization of a society with factories and dam building did affect the quality of the fresh waters during the 50’s to 70’s. Since then many problem areas have been cleaned up and the free flow of pollution into natural rivers and lakes stopped for good.
The Gulf of Finland is being mostly affected by the many large cities along its shoreline.  Then there is also the fish stock in the Bothnia Sea, herrings, Baltic herrings, perch, and salmon, which does get fresh water flowing into the Bothnia Sea bay, especially during the spring season, while the winter snow and ice melts from the catchment areas and flows into the Bothnia Sea. Last but not least is the far north Arctic Sea, where the clean Arctic waters are filled with large resources of fish, like Arctic cod and salmon just to name a few, plentiful with large resources of seafood.

Natural Nordic berries and the traditional berry forage culture

 

The most common Natural Nordic berries that are foraged and harvested by the local peoples do vary some from region to region, and the local environment and also the latitude.  Not all berries grow equally; they can be located at very specific areas especially with the development of modern farming, draining of bogs and swamps.  The cultivation and expansion of the pine forestry, forest harvesting and the modern urban development, with the growth of cities, roads and highways. They have all affected the land areas in many ways where natural berries did grow naturally and undisturbed for many hundreds of years, if not for thousands.

Natural Nordic berries
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Natural Nordic berries environment

Wild berries do need a particular natural environment, with the right soil acidity, moisture and the right amount of sunlight. Trees can be a problem to natural berries, trees drink a lot of water during the summer season, therefore draining the top soil of water, and the large grown trees also block the sunlight from reaching the ground cover.  Thirdly the trees can act as a wind break, blocking out the pollinators from getting access to the berry plants. Much of the natural landscape where Natural Nordic berries seem to thrive best are mostly  open with only some trees scattered around about, with a natural water source close by, peat and moss, springs, creeks or rivers, and  wet marsh areas that keep the ground cover and foliage moist during the hot dry summer months.

Sweet nutrition from Natural Nordic Berries.

There 6 popular berries that do grow naturally in the Nordic environment without any intervention from humans. They are Lingonberries, Bilberries, Wild Raspberries, Cloud-berries, Cranberry, and the wild Strawberry.
All these berries can be found at some of the local farmers markets during the mid to late summer season, the berries do not all ripen at the same time, they do vary a lot and the peak season is relatively short for some berries, all berries are not equal as when they ripen and how long the season lasts. As well as the wild berries there are also farmed berries from the Nordic countries as well as the rest of Europe, the most common ones are the big bright red round strawberries and large raspberries.   The wild berries never grow as big as the farmed ones.
The other 4 berries mentioned are not farmed in the Nordic countries, at least not farmed in Finland, the wild berries do not adapt well to artificially manipulated environments. They are very sensitive to the natural growing stages of their growing environment.

Nutrition highlights of the Natural Nordic berries.

Vitamin C. Sea buckthorn berry has a very high vitamin C content, some 165mg per 100 grams, compared to 50mg of an orange, and 65mg in a kiwi fruit, per 100 grams. Cloudberry is also relatively high in vitamin C, at 100mg per 100 grams of fresh fruit weight.  Vitamin C. RDI is 75mg/day.

Vitamin E.  Sea Buckthorn berry is 3 mg/100 grams.  Cloudberry also 3 mg per 100 grams. Bilberry being close to 2mg per 100 grams, and Lingonberry at 1.5 mg per 100 grams.  Vitamin E. RDI is between 8-10mg/day.

Natural Nordic berries and Essential fatty acid content

Content of Essential fatty acids. Omega-6 fatty acids and Omega-3 fatty acids.
Sea buckthorn berry is at 240mg (omega-6) per 100 grams of fresh berry weight. Omega-3 content level is at 330mg/100 grams.
Cranberry, Lingonberry and Bilberry all have the same omega-6 level at 125mg/100 grams.

Source:  National Institute for Health and Welfare. 2013. www.fineli.fi

Phenolic compounds in the Natural Nordic berries.

Nordic berries do have polyphenols in the skin of the berries, similar to the dark red wine grapes skins, that contain the polyphenols. What is a polyphenol, here is a definition.

“A polyphenol antioxidant is a type of antioxidant containing a polyphenolic substructure. Numbering over 4,000 distinct species, many of these compounds have antioxidant activity in vitro but are unlikely to have antioxidant roles in vivo.  Rather, they may affect cell-to-cell signalling, receptor sensitivity, inflammatory enzyme activity or gene regulation”. – Wikipedia.

Polyphenols are not classified as a nutrient, but extensive research has been done, and the conclusion is that the polyphenols, similar as the vast research done over many years on human health and Carotenoids has yielded results that prove that the Carotenoids do positively affect the quality of life.

They protect the many millions of molecular cell structures of the body from the attacks of free radicals. Free radicals break down good molecular structures, by their dynamic chemical reactions.

“A free radical is any atom or molecule that has a single unpaired electron in an outer shell. While a few free radicals such as melanin are not chemically reactive, most biologically-relevant free radicals are highly reactive. For most biological structures, free radical damage is closely associated with oxidative damage. Antioxidants are reducing agents, and limit oxidative damage to biological structures by passivating them from free radicals. – Wikipedia.

Natural Nordic berries with the natural Polyphenols and carotenoids have yielded results that prove that they do positively affect the quality of life. Take a minute or two view the picture galleries of the natural Nordic berries today.

Thank you for visiting Nordic Cuisine focus website, and reading this article on Natural Nordic Berries.  If you would like to purchase a berry photo or perhaps a product, a T-shirt, a mouse pad, or a poster for the wall, then you have two galleries to choose from:

Europe  Natural Nordic berries Gallery.

http://www.artflakes.com/en/shop/vesa-leinonen

Have a great day and enjoy the summer season berry pictures from the Nordic region.  Cheers!