Small fruit with big benefits

wellbeing

Small fruit with big benefits

Cranberries are characterised by their distinct sweet, tart taste and fiery red colour. But what some people don’t know is that it’s a small fruit with big benefits. Commercially, cranberry juice is sold either in pure form or in the form of a cocktail, wherein it is blended with apple or grape. For the maximum benefits, it’s advisable to always drink freshly extracted juice diluted with two parts of water without adding any sweeteners and preservatives.

Some of the major health benefits of cranberries include:

 Cranberry is known to help prevent urinary tract infection caused by bacteria. The proanthocyanidins found in cranberry block the adhesive strands on the E.coli bacteria from sticking to a surface, thereby inhibiting their ability to stick to the cell walls of the uterus and bladder.

 Quinic acid, found in abundance in cranberry, may help to prevent the development of kidney stones.

 Both raw and cooked cranberries are used to overcome appetite loss, digestive problems, blood disorders and scurvy.

 A good source of Vitamin C, they are potent vasodilators used for alleviating respiratory problems.

 As a rich source of antioxidants, cranberry helps in flushing out unsaturated foods and toxins from the body, thereby aiding weight loss  and de-toxification.

 Cranberry juice inhibits the growth of mouth bacteria that causes plaque. It keeps gum diseases at bay.

 It is a good source of polyphenol antioxidants and phytochemicals, both of which are believed to be possible deterrents against cancer and disorders of the cardiovascular and immune systems.

(The writer is a Jaipur-based paediatrician)

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