Before becoming popular in Europe and North America, the wolfberry saw traditional use in both East Asian cuisine and medicine. It is a fruit native to southeastern Europe and Asia. They are used to give soups flavor and are added to numerous meat and vegetable dishes. As a medicine, it was commonly used to treat Yin deficiency in ancient China. it was also used medicinally in Vietnam, Korea, and Japan.
The goji berry, like other berries, is a rich source of antioxidants. Antioxidants are useful in lowering the risk for heart disease, as well as preventing many age related diseases such as Alzheimer's disease, atherosclerosis, and diabetes. This is because they minimize damage from free radicals that injure cells and damage DNA.
In one study of mice fed with high fat diets, Goji berry intake showed decreased levels of LDL, triglycerides, and total cholesterol.
Goji berry also showed protective effects on the oxidative stress and DNA damages in diabetic rats.
The Goji berry is also the richest source of carotenoids of all known foods or plants on the planet. This includes beta carotene, which carrots are most commonly known for having. Carotenoids give the berry its bright red pigment, act as an antioxidant, and are a source of Vitamin A.
Vitamin A helps to boost immune function, protect vision, and prevent the risk for heart disease. It has been shown to improve vision by enabling your eyes to better adjust to light changes and keeping your eyes moist. Vitmain A also plays an essential role in the proper muscle growth in children and teens.
In vitro studies have shown that extracts of the goji fruit have been able to destroy cancer cells. Other than the antioxidants found in the goji, the berry is a rich source of Germanium, which is known to have anti-cancer properties. Organic Germanium interacts with the body by triggering the immune system to produce natural killer (NK) cells that act to fight cancer cells. Germanium also creates an oxygen-rich condition in the body which cancer cells find hard to thrive in.