Cranberries are a popular superfood. You can consume them in the form of a sauce or a juice.
Many people consider this fruit to be a superfood due to their high nutrition content and antioxidant content.
They can also add them to stuffing, casseroles, or dessert. They are native to North America.
In fact, the nutrients in cranberries can lower the risk of urinary tract infection (UTI), the prevent certain types of cancer, improve immune function and decrease blood pressure.
In this article, we look at the health benefits of cranberries, their nutritional breakdown, and how people can incorporate them into a healthful diet.
All health and nutrition experts recommend a diet that includes plenty of fruits and vegetables.
Cranberries in particular offer a range of health benefits. They are a good source of various vitamins and antioxidants.
The benefits include the following:
Cranberries played a role in traditional treatments for UTIs.
However, research into the effects of cranberries on UTI treatment has produced some conflicting results.
Medical professionals most commonly recommend cranberries for women with recurrent UTIs.
The high level of antioxidant proanthocyanins (PACs) in cranberries helps prevent certain bacteria from sticking to the urinary tract.
Thus PACs in cranberries help prevent infection.
This is because it takes a high concentration of the cranberry extract to prevent bacterial adhesion.
Commercially available cranberry juices do not contain such high amounts of PACs.
Reducing the risk of cardiovascular diseases
The polyphenols contained in cranberries may reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease (CVD).
Thus, supplementing cranberries in the diet can help a person manage several risk factors for CVD.
These include systolic blood pressure, which is the blood pressure during a contraction of the heart muscle.
Additionally cranberry supplementation has helped reduce body mass index and improve levels of high density lipoprotein (HDL) or good cholesterol.
Also, consuming a single dose of a low calorie cranberry beverage every day can regulate blood sugar, chemical signs of inflammation and increased levels of HDL lipoprotein.
Slowing down cancer progression
Cranberries or compounds present in it have several beneficial effects on cancer cells.
- triggering the death of cancer cells
- slowing the growth of cancer cells
- reducing inflammation
Cranberries can also affect several other mechanisms that promote cancer growth and spread.
Delicious and nutrition rich cranberry smoothie for a morning pick-me-up to boost your metabolism and give you a burst of energy.
500ml Ocean Spray Cranberry Juice
1 Peeled and sliced banana
1 apple (washed, cored and cut into wedges)
75g mixed frozen berries like strawberries and blueberries
Now, pour the cranberry juice into a blender and then add the berries, banana and apple.
Whizz on high power till everything is well mixed and the smoothie becomes a perfect velvet-like texture.