The raspberry is one of nature's own superfoods, which can be found in a variety of contexts from fresh summer fruit to teas, juices and desserts. It has the highest known proportion of dietary fibre for its total weight of any other whole food, as well as being a rich source of vitamin C and manganese.
It also has a good supply of the powerful antioxidant vitamin E, several of the B-complex vitamins, and vitamin K which is necessary for blood coagulation and proper absorption of calcium. Other minerals include iron, magnesium, potassium and zinc.
The red raspberry, in particular, has the most medicinal properties, which have been recognised for over 2,000 years in traditional medicine. Teas were made from its leaves and the plant was used for a variety of remedies including digestive disorders, morning sickness and as a throat gargle.
Recent research has shown that organically grown, fully ripe raspberries have a significantly higher volume of free radical scavenging antioxidants, deriving from their many phenol, flavonoid and anthocyanin components. These phytonutrients can help reduce the risk of diseases associated with chronic inflammation and oxidative stress, such as hypertension, atherosclerosis, type 2 diabetes and obesity.