Goji Berries for good health

Goji Berries for good health

10 September 2018 by Caitlin Armit

What are goji berries?

Goji berries (‘gou qi zi’ or Lycium Barbarum) have been used in Chinese Herbal Medicine for thousands of years and have gained popularity in recent years in the West. In modern terms, they are known for their rich antioxidant content, specifically beta-carotene and zeaxanthin which protects the retina of the eye, and vitamin content including A1, B1, B2, C, calcium and iron. They are, however, part of the nightshade family so if you have a sensitivity to this group of foods you may wish to avoid goji berries.

What are they good for?

In Chinese Medicine terms these berries are used to nourish blood, nourish the liver and kidneys and to support the lung yin. They are typically included in Chinese Herbal Medicine formulas designed to improve eyesight and immune function, to regulate blood pressure and circulation, to assist women’s health and fertility and to promote longevity. In cooking, it’s an important ingredient in nourishing soups for post-partum women because it nourishes yin and blood.

How do I use them?

Goji berries have a sweet flavour and are quite palatable compared to the typical bitter/acrid taste of many Chinese herbs. They can be consumed in a variety of creative ways. Here’s a few ideas:

  • Add them to a trail mix for hikes or road trips
  • Keep a small quantity on your desk at work to snack on during the day
  • Toss a handful of goji berries into your warm or cold salads
  • Add a tablespoon of goji berries and a tablespoon of pepitas to your morning porridge
  • Let some goji berries simmer away with your other ingredients in slow cooked stews
  • Stir them through your soup for some different texture and sweet taste.

One traditional use is to let them steep in hot water and then drink as a tea. For additional benefits to your eyesight, add in some dried Chrysanthemum flowers. Goji berries can be purchased in Chinatown, most health food stores and supermarkets.



Goji Berry (Lycium barbarum): Composition and Health Effects – A Review

An evidence-based update on the pharmacological activities and possible molecular targets of Lycium barbarum polysaccharides





Categories: Brisbane Chinese Dietetics Blog | Women's Health Brisbane

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