Health benefits of cranberries
Native Americans knew about the astringent properties of this fruit and used them in poultices for wounds, as they have anti-inflammatory properties, which also help when eaten. It is thought that cranberries were present at the first Thanksgiving dinner in 1621, and the tradition has continued. However, cranberries can be eaten at any time of the year, and should be a part of our diets. They contain lycopene, which is beneficial, especially to men as it seems to reduce the risk of prostate cancer. Lycopene is found in red fruits such as watermelon, tomatoes, and of course cranberries, as well as another red or orange fruit.
Cranberries also contain the essential amino acids, vitamin C and minerals, but unfortunately, some of the health benefits of cranberries are cancelled out when sugar is added to them during cooking. The addition of sugar means that they do not have the capacity to destroy harmful bacteria such as E.coli which, if they are eaten raw or drunk as juice, they will flush out of our systems through urine. They have a diuretic action and are good if you have a urinary tract infection such as cystitis. Instead of adding sugar to cranberry sauce use the leaves from sweet cicely or stevia instead or add raisins to reduce the tartness of the little berries.
Apart from helping our bodies in this way they are also ant-asthmatic as they are vasodilators and open the bronchial tubes, so help asthma sufferers. Their high vitamin C content means that cranberries help to boost our immune systems and combat illnesses. Vitamin C also helps in the absorption of calcium.
In traditional and homeopathic medicine, cranberries are used to treat liver, blood and stomach problems. The proanthocyanins in the berries prevent harmful bacteria adhering to the walls of the gut and the urinary tract, so they can help our bodies in many ways.
Cranberries were advertised by Sarah Ferguson, formerly the Duchess of York, in an advertising campaign called "It's Your Zing!" in 1996 linked to the Ocean Spray Company which has been selling cranberries around the world for years. Later in the 2006 Martin Scorsese film, "The Departed" in which Leonardo DiCaprio orders cranberry juice in a bar frequented by undesirables.
This winter it would be a good idea to add cranberries, pumpkins and pomegranates to your diets, especially if you are male, as these foods help reduce the risk of prostate and other cancers. They are also very useful for women's general health too, and it is thought that they might as well aid cognitive processes and assist memory. Who would have thought you could get so much from such a small berry?
So, this is all about Health benefits of cranberries the ultimate fruit. This article original source from ezine articles by Lynne Evans. What do you think? Feel free to leave a comment below.