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Cranberries are the most useful fruit for you, if you suffer from repeated UTIs, stomach ulcers and GI distress, have a problem with your heart or liver, have been diagnosed with cancer, have gum disease or bad skin. The list can go on and on to prove cranberries are indeed nature’s wonder fruits.
Let’s see what these berries contain. A cup of cranberries contains the following:
- Calories - 46
- Manganese - 18 %
- Vitamin C - 18 %
- Vitamin E
- Vitamin K
- Glycemic index – Low
Cranberries have thousands of benefits for our health. It’s not just we who are saying this, but it is a scientific fact.
What makes cranberries so awesome?
- Fights UTI: Cranberries are strongly acidic and they contain a chemical compound that gives them their bacteria fighting punch. This compound is called proanthocyanidins (PACs). It helps prevent UTIs as the special structure of PACs acts as a barrier to bacteria, which latch on the walls of your urinary bladder, causing UTIs.
- Prevents stomach cancer: The PAC prevents bacteria, which cause stomach cancer called helicobacter pylori to latch on to the walls of your stomach and large intestine.
- Protects your heart: Cranberries contain Anthocyanin. This phytonutrient gives cranberries their amazing red colour and is linked to their unique antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, which protect your cardio-vascular system and liver. To reap the complete benefits of all five cranberry phytonutrients, it’s best to consume the whole berry rather than have it in the form of an extract or juice.
- Contains anti-cancer properties: Cranberries possess solid cancer-preventive benefits. They can prevent cancers of the breast, colon, lung, and prostate. None of the cancer-related benefits of cranberries should be surprising, since cranberry is loaded with antioxidant and anti-inflammatory phytonutrients like anthocyanins which provide antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and anti-cancer properties. Antioxidants are essential for improving health by helping combat the free radicals that can damage cellular structures as well as DNA, thereby preventing cancers.
- Oral health: Apart from boosting immunity, making our skin lush and youthful, cranberries can also prevent periodontal disease.
- Good for diabetic: Since, cranberries are a low GI fruit, diabetics can have them too and benefit from their health benefits.
- Good for your heart: The fruit has also been proven to lower LDL and raise HDL or good cholesterol, as well as help in recovery from stroke.
- Promotes weight loss: The fruit is loaded with fibre, which keeps you full for a longer time and aids in weight loss. Because of high antioxidant and anti-inflammatory content, cranberries help improve memory.
This food is no less than a superfood, sent straight from heaven for our well-being.
Vitamins are essential micronutrients which the body requires, though in small amounts, for optimal health. These chemicals play crucial roles, for instance, vitamin K is essential for optimal blood clotting process. It also has multiple other benefits. More details about the functions, benefits and sources are listed below.
- Vitamin K is actually a group and has K1, K2, and K3. The functions and benefits accordingly will depend on the actual chemical being referred to.
- These are fat soluble vitamins and therefore absorption is better when something fatty is eaten along with it
- Vitamin K1 or phyloquilline reaches the liver and is essential for blood clotting. Reduced levels of vitamin K can lead to uncontrolled bleeding, but this is very rare in adults. Newborns can have this problem, and therefore, it is common to give them a one shot of vitamin K injection.
- Vitamin K2 is produced by gut bacteria and reaches blood vessel walls and bones. It prevents hardening and calcification of arteries, which is the main cause of heart disease.
- It helps in improving calcium and other mineral concentration in the bones and makes the matrix strong. It can be used in osteoporosis to reverse and control bone loss. It can also be used to heal fractured bones.
- It slows the growth of cancer cells and can be used to stabilise cancer. It has been shown to improve multiple forms including hepatocellular, prostate, colon, and oral cancers.
- It is beneficial in controlling Alzheimer’s disease and improve memory loss in ageing people
- It improves insulin action and therefore prolongs onset of type 2 diabetes
- It has been shown to have antioxidant properties (as most other vitamins) and also helps in reducing toxin buildup
- It is good for skin health and can help control bruising and dermatitis
Vitamin K is found naturally in many foods and the daily dose required for an adult is about 120 to 150 mcg/day. Therefore supplementation is usually not required.
Leafy green vegetables including spinach, okra, cabbage, beans broccoli, and asparagus
- Fermented foods like yoghurt
- Soybean in all forms including cooking medium. Japanese diet uses boiled, fermented soybean called natto, which contains tremendous amount of vitamin K
- Nuts, such as cashews, almonds, walnuts, are a good source
- Strawberries, grapes, prunes, and apples
- Seafood such as salmon and shrimp contain good amount to control heart attack and stroke.
- Meat (duck, beef, chicken, and lamb)
Supplements are to be avoided, especially I pregnant and/or nursing mothers and people with a history of stroke, heart disease, heart attack, blood clotting problems.
In case you have a concern or query you can always consult an expert & get answers to your questions!
Wine lovers have a difficult time answering this question to others, red or white, as both have their share of points when a comparison is being drawn between the two. Too many researches have been undertaken to make a choice and the following are some points that might help you decide.
Some popular white wines include Champagne, Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Grigio, Chardonnay, Riesling, and Chenin Blanc. Popular red wines include Cabernet Sauvignon, Zinfandel, Pinot Noir, Syrah, Merlot, and Sangiovese.
White wine is made from white grapes, without any skin or seeds. Red wines are made from whole dark red or black grapes, and the skin adds to the flavour and colour. Red wines are richer, white ones are sweeter.
Though wine lovers would decide on red or white wine depending on their preferred taste, from a health point of view, red wine wins over white wine. Though they are both made of grapes, they do not provide any benefit like fruits. Through fermentation, their original nutrition is lost but newer benefits towards heart and lung health settle in.
Read on to know more.
- Red wines have less natural sugar compared to white wines, though there is no significant difference in terms of carbohydrates or calories.
- Both have equal amounts of calcium, which is good for bones.
- Red wine has more amount of iron, phosphorus, and magnesium compared to the white variety.
- Red wine has as much potassium as in a banana, so beats the white variety again.
- Carotenoids like lutein and zeaxanthin are found in good amounts in the red variety, which is good for macular degeneration.
- Red wine also is richer in choline, which prevents liver damage and overall inflammation.
- Red wines, with the skin as well, contain resveratrol which is protective against heart disease. They prevent plaque formation in the arteries, improve the immune system, and inhibit cancer growth.
- The polyphenol in them are excellent antioxidants and help in preventing cholesterol levels, reducing blood pressure, strengthening the immune system, are anti-infective and anticancer agents.
- The flavonoids in the red wines also have strong antioxidant properties and help in reducing the risk of cancer.
- White wines are more acidic, and so are proven to cause more erosion of the teeth. Red is safer, with less damage to the teeth.
Though white is sweeter, the red one is healthier. With its benefits over the white variety is almost all aspects, it wins over. A word of caution, though wine contains alcohol, which has its own harmful effects on the body. The debate here is only to prove that red wine has more benefits compared to the white variety when consumed in moderate amounts (up to 2 drinks per week). In case you have a concern or query you can always consult an expert & get answers to your questions!