Cranberries are small, hard, round, red fruits with a flavor that many describe as both bitter and sour. They grow on vines in freshwater bogs, mostly in the northern United States and southern Canada. They’re related to blueberries and wintergreen. Cranberries are the best of all berries. These deep red beauties are a common sight in many kitchens because of their health benefits. Dried cranberries, on the other hand, have virtually none of those nutrients. If you’re looking for an alternative to candy, dried cranberries may make a marginally better choice.
- Calories 210 (25% from fat)
- Protein 1g
- Fat 6g
- Carbohydrates 39g
- Cholesterol 15mg
- Fiber 3g
- Sodium 64mg
Health benefits of Cranberries
1. Powerhouse of Antioxidants:
Did you know that cranberries succeed almost all fruits and vegetables in disease-fighting antioxidants, including straw berries, raspberries, spinach, broccoli and cherries? One cup of cranberries in fact has a total of 8,983 antioxidant capacity. They’re also high in anthocyanins. These are the compounds that give cranberries their dark red color. Studies have shown they may have anti-cancer and anti-inflammatory effects.
2. Prevents UTIs:
Cranberry is perhaps best known for its role in preventing UTIs. The high level of proanthocyanidins in cranberries helps lower the adhesion of certain bacteria to the urinary-tract walls, in turn fighting off infections This includes children or women who get them often. Several controlled trials with women as subjects were conducted in which they were put on cranberry juice for 12 months. It was reported that cranberry juice decreased the recurrence of UTIs in these women however cranberry juice is far less effective since it takes an extremely large concentration of cranberry to prevent bacterial adhesion. Your doctor may suggest that you take them as supplements or drink the juice from time to time.
3. Boosts Brain Power:
The antioxidant and anti-inflammatory compounds present in cranberries may improve memory and coordination according to Tufts University. So if you wish to stay brilliant, you might want to snack on dried cranberries daily.
4. Gut health:
Cranberries can improve gut bacteria in people who eat an animal-based diet. In other words, if you eat a lot of meat, dairy, and sugar, eating cranberries can help put good bacteria back into your digestive system. They also reduce bile acids in the gut that have a link to colon and gastrointestinal cancers.
5. Prevents Cancer:
The review also suggests that cranberries can affect several other mechanisms that promote cancer growth and spread. Although testing on humans with cancer is limited, these findings show promise for the future management of some cancers alongside standard treatments. Research has shown that cranberries are beneficial in slowing tumor progression and have shown positive effects against prostate, liver, breast, ovarian and colon cancers.
6. Prevent kidney infections:
Cranberry juice is a traditional remedy that has been used for decades to treat UTIs and kidney conditions. The active ingredients of cranberry can inhibit the adherence of pathogen
7. Helps with Weight Loss:
Cranberry juice has an emulsifying effect on the fats deposited in the body which in turn help with weight loss. Since it is loaded with fiber, it also helps one stay full for longer”, says Delhi-based Nutritionist Anshul Jaibharat.
8. Combats Tooth Decay:
Cranberries may benefit oral health by preventing gum disease and bacteria from binding to the teeth. Cranberry juice creates a protective layer on your teeth. The cranberry juice-film makes it difficult for the bacteria that cause cavities to cling to the surface of your teeth.
9. Nourishes Skin:
You can blend quarter cup of honey with two tablespoons of dried cranberries and quarter tablespoon of essential oil and apply it to your skin for 10 minutes for improved results.
10. Boosts Immunity:
Since cranberries are rich in antioxidants and phytochemicals, they promote a healthy immune system and reduce the odds of you getting sick.
11. Heart Healthy:
According to a study published in the British Journal of Nutrition, people who drink a glass of unsweetened cranberry juice a day have increased levels of HDL cholesterol i.e. good cholesterol by about 10%. The polyphenols present in cranberries may also reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease by preventing platelet build-up and reducing blood pressure. Drinking cranberry juice can relax the stiff blood vessels in your body. Thus, it lowers blood pressure or hypertension. If you are looking for a heart-healthy meal add a glass of cranberry juice to your daily diet.
12. Rich in Vitamin C:
Vitamin C is a powerful, natural antioxidant. According to the National Institutes of Health (NIH), vitamin c can block some of the damage caused by disease-causing free radicals, improve iron absorption from plant sources, boost the immune system, support collagen production for wound healing.
13. Digestive health:
There is growing evidence that the photochemical contained in cranberries play an important role in digestive health.
14. Fight Infections:
Cranberry juice’s antimicrobial effects on the body are what enable it to help fight against seven bacterial strains. It is also effective against norovirus. Cranberries inhibited the growth of seven bacterial microbes. The study did not assess whether cranberries or cranberry juice could prevent infection with these microbes in humans. Cranberry juice prevents the risk of heart diseases in postmenopausal women by helping to lower the cholesterol levels in the body. Fresh cranberry juice is effective in fighting infections. It helps sore throats and colds.
People should choose varieties that are not from concentrate, with no sugar added, to get the most out of cranberry juice. Alternatively, a person can consider making fresh cranberry smoothies at home by putting cranberries in a blender with other ingredients. Fresh cranberries have a shelf life of up to two months when stored in a tightly sealed container in the refrigerator. But if you want your cranberries to keep longer, it’s advisable to freeze them instead. This microorganism attacks the protective layer of the stomach and duodenum.
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