Cranberries: the small wonder

Cranberries the small wonderCranberry is called as the berry of all seasons. Though it is a native to North America; still through preservation techniques it is available all over the world as fruit, juices and capsules. The berries are small, hard oval in shape and a little sour to taste.  Cranberry juice is a major use of cranberries; it is usually either sweetened or blended with other fruit juices to reduce its natural severe tartness.

Cranberries score among the highest of all fruits in antioxidant activity. This wonder fruit apart from helping us in preventing premature aging and lifestyle disorders, has lots of other benefits. Cranberry juice may inhibit formation of plaque and subsequent tooth decay. Consumption of cranberry juice has also been found to be beneficial in preventing urinary tract infections.

 Urinary tract infections: A urinary tract infection, or UTI, is an infection that can happen anywhere along the urinary tract. It is a very common complaint seen among females. Cranberry has long been recommended as a preventive measure against repeated urinary tract infections (refer to links mentioned at the end). It works by preventing Escherichia coli or E. coli, the most common cause of urinary tract infections from adhering to the walls of urinary tract, making it difficult for infection to take hold. It will not, however, kill the bacteria once they have settled and start multiplying in the body. It is also taken to prevent kidney stones.

Diets including cranberries may help support memory function, coordination and healthy immune system.

A Healthy Snack! Cranberries are high in vitamin C and fiber along with being cholesterol free, fat free and low in sodium which makes it an excellent snack for weight watchers and health conscious people.

Cranberry or cranberry juice can be taken at any age or with any medical condition because it has no side effects and it has not been contraindicated at any stage of life. It can be safely taken by pregnant women and nursing mothers.

Though it helps in preventing UTI it should be noted that Cranberry will not cure an active infection. For this, you need a course of antibiotics.

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16329274

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/life-style/health-fitness/health/Cranberry-juice-fights-urinary-infection/articleshow/6175855.cms

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2631561/

Image Courtesy: http://www.thecamreport.com

 

 

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