7 Surprising Health Benefits Of Cranberries That You Must Know

benefits of cranberries

Dried, frozen, fresh, or canned, cranberries can be eaten in any form. These luscious berries are awesome to taste. Hence you might have used them in pies, cakes, puddings, desserts and what not. But a thing that you might have entirely ignored about cranberries is that these are wealth for your health and well-being. Eating cranberries can keep you young, healthy and much more active. Learn about all the benefits of cranberries in this article.

What are Cranberries?

Cranberries are a healthy food native to North America and Britain. These belong to the Vaccinium family. Cranberries have a sharp sour taste and find use in numerous cuisines. Loaded with an abundant amount of nutrients, these provide multiple health benefits.

Cranberries Nutrition Facts

The little cranberries are wondrous for your health. These are rich in antioxidants and provide you with high amounts of essential minerals like calcium, iron, and potassium along with Vitamin B-complex and vitamin C. Also, these are a good source of fiber and Vitamin E. Total carbs in cranberries (half a cup) amount to 6.6 grams with only 25 calories. These are essentially great food to enjoy good health.

Health Benefits of Cranberries

Cranberries owing to their high amount of nutrients are excellent food for healthy living. Here is the list of benefits of cranberries that make these little fruits a health booster.

1. Cranberries Help in Lowering Down the Bad Cholesterol in the Body

cranberries for lowering down cholesterol

Cranberries contain polyphenolic compounds which are known to regulate the level of triglycerides in the body. These promote the production of good cholesterol in the body and reduce the bad cholesterol that poses an increased risk of heart attack. Thus one of the significant benefits of cranberries is that it protects you from heart diseases and prevents obesity and diabetes.

2. Benefits of Cranberries Include Maintaining Cardiovascular Health

cranberries for cardiovascular health

High cholesterol levels in the body put a strain on the heart and increase the risk of cardiovascular troubles like a heart attack. By lowering down the bad cholesterol in the body, cranberries ensure a healthy heart. Besides, the anti-inflammatory compounds present in them prevents inflammation in blood vessels and regulates the smooth flow of blood through them. It helps in relaxing the blood vessels and keep heart issues at bay.

3. Cranberries Help Treat Lung Inflammation

cranberries for lung inflammation

Yes, benefits of cranberries include prevention and treatment of inflammation in the lungs. Cranberries have anti-inflammatory properties, which means eating cranberries or drinking cranberry juice can prevent inflammation and promote a healthy immune system. An enzyme called nondialyzable material present in them keeps the virus away from healthy cells thus reducing the probability of catching infections like cold and flu. It also helps in preventing influenza.

4. Curing Urinary Tract Infections is one of the Prime Benefits of Cranberries

cranberries for urinary tract infections

Cranberries are highly effective in treating Urinary Tract Infection. The flavonoids present in cranberries prevent the build-up of bacteria in the urinary tract. They do not let bacteria attach itself to the internal cell lining of the urinary tract. As bacteria cannot grow without attaching itself to a surface, it gets killed.

5. Cranberries Help Prevent Cancer

Cancer is a fatal disease that can happen to anyone. However, you can avoid it by including cranberries in your diet. Studies say that around seventeen types of cancers can be prevented by consuming cranberries. It is because cranberries contain polyphenols that have antioxidative and anti-inflammatory properties. These prevent cancer cell formation and inhibit the growth of a tumor. Cranberries are also known to boost the activity of immune system cells like B-cells and K-cells.

6. Cranberries are Excellent for Maintaining Oral Hygiene

cranberries for oral hygiene

Another one of the prime benefits of cranberries is that they give you a healthy smile by keeping oral problems at bay. So, if you are facing issues like cavities, plaque, gum diseases then start eating cranberries. The anti-inflammatory compounds present in cranberries reduce the formation of biofilms on gums and teeth that cause tooth decay and other infections.

7. Cranberries Give you Flawless and Youthful Skin

cranberries for youthful skin

Add unsweetened dried cranberries to your diet for healthy and clear skin. Cranberries are rich in antioxidants that help in flushing out the toxins from the body and fight free radicals that accelerate skin aging. These keep your skin hydrated and moisturized, and significantly slow down its aging process. Vitamin C present in cranberries has amino acids and components like hydroxyproline and hydroxylysine that promote the formation of collagen which plays a vital role in skin regeneration. It helps in the production of new skin cells and effectively repairs the damaged ones; thus giving you beautiful and flawless skin.

Cranberries Recipes

The little cranberries find use in numerous recipes. You can eat them fresh or add them to a variety of dishes to enhance the taste. Here are simple and easy cranberry recipes that you must try to reap the benefits of the amazing fruit.

Cranberry Grape Sauce

Fresh cranberries make an excellent sauce that adds a sharp flavor to your dish.

What will you need?

  • Two cups of seedless black grapes (cut into half)
  • Two cups of fresh cranberries
  • One-fourth cup of fresh orange juice
  • Two teaspoons of orange zest
  • Half a cup of ruby port
  • Two tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
  • One chopped shallot
  • Ground black pepper
  • Kosher salt

How to prepare?

Put a pan on medium flame, add to it, olive oil and shallot.

  • Cook the shallot for one to two minutes until it gets soft
  • After that, add grapes and cranberries
  • Cook them for about three to four minutes with occasional stirring until the berries start bursting
  • Add to it, orange juice and port.
  • Cook for around 10 minutes to get a thick sauce
  • After that add orange zest, pepper, and salt.
  • Serve the sauce warm.

Cranberry Orange Bread

This Cranberry Orange Bread recipe is just perfect for Thanksgiving.

What will you need?

  • Two cups of oat or all-purpose flour
  • Two-third cups of sugar
  • Two cups of frozen cranberries (chopped)
  • One-fourth cup of stevia
  • Two teaspoons of baking powder
  • Three-fourth cup of salt
  • One cup of orange juice
  • Half a teaspoon of baking soda
  • Three and a half tablespoons of oil
  • One tablespoon of orange zest
  • Two teaspoons of vanilla extract

How to prepare?

  • Take a large bowl and add to it flour, baking powder, baking soda, sugar and salt
  • Mix all the ingredients well
  • After that, add to the batter, cranberries, orange juice, zest, and vanilla extract.
  • Mix the ingredients to get a batter of uniform consistency
  • Pour the mixture in a loaf pan lined with parchment
  • Put it in an oven preheated to 350 F
  • Bake it for about 50 minutes
  • Once the bread has risen, take it out and cool it
  • Your bread is ready to be savored. You can glaze it with coconut butter.

Fresh Cranberry Apple Relish

Satiate your taste buds with this delicious and healthy Fresh Cranberry and Apple Relish.

What will you need?

  • Twelve ounces of fresh cranberries
  • One finely chopped granny smith apple
  • Two sliced scallions
  • Three tablespoons of sugar
  • Two teaspoons of orange zest
  • One-third cup of orange juice
  • Black pepper
  • Kosher salt

How to Prepare?

  • Add cranberries to a food processor and chop them fine
  • Transfer the cranberries to a bowl
  • After that, add apple, orange juice and zest, scallions, sugar, salt and pepper
  • Stir them well and refrigerate

Side-effects of Cranberries

Cranberry fruit has some fantastic benefits. Consuming it can give you a healthier frame. But like every other food, an excess of cranberry can also harm you. Besides the benefits of cranberries, you must know the side-effects of the fruit. Over Consumption of cranberries may result in:

  • Kidney stones
  • Upset stomach and abdominal issues
  • Cranberries are dehydrating and can cause diarrhea
  • Increased risk of cancer oxalate uroliths

Cranberries are undoubtedly magical fruits. From boosting your immunity to keeping your heart healthy, preventing infections and promoting healthy skin, the benefits of cranberries are many. Hence including them in your diet is an excellent way to remain healthy and fit for long. Try some delicious and easy cranberry recipes and enjoy their numerous benefits.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. How are Cranberries Grown?

Around cranberry fields, dikes are formed. The soil is plowed, and seeds are planted. During the growing season, the grounds are regularly irrigated. In the autumn season, the bed is flooded for cranberry bushes to grow. Beating machines, beat the cranberry bushes that remain low in the ground to release the berries. The released berries float on water and are then scooped out.

2. Are Cranberries Acidic?

Yes, cranberries are acidic but when digested these become alkaline.

3. Is it OK to Eat Raw Cranberries?

Benefits are mostly consumed in dried or sweetened form. It is because raw cranberries have a bitter taste that might not appease your taste palate. However, if bitter taste is not an issue, then you can consume them raw.

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