Eat a colorful variety of fruits and vegetables every day!

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Cranberries



Cranberries are well known for their ability to cure urinary tract infections (UTIs). In fact, recent research has shown that proanthocyanidins (PACs) are the main factor that helps eliminate UTIs via a mechanism that promotes bacterial anti-adhesion. 

The PACs essentially act as a barrier to bacteria that normally latch onto the urinary tract lining, and thus prevent accumulation of the bacteria that cause UTIs, and flush them out.

Cranberries also have beneficial anti-cancer effects, having been shown to inhibit the growth of several cancer cell lines, including breast cancer cells. Cranberry phytochemical extracts resulted in a 25% higher ratio of apoptotic breast cancer cell death as compared to control groups without cranberry supplementation. The phytochemical extracts of cranberries suppressed growth likely due to the initiation of apoptosis and G1 cycle arrest. They also protect against human oral, colon, and prostate cancer cell lines.

Cranberries are also great for the heart – studies have shown that in patients with coronary artery disease, consumption of cranberry juice helped reduce carotid femoral pulse wave velocity (a clinically relevant measure of arterial stiffness). In addition, cranberries improve liver health due to their high vitamin C content. Vitamin C helps trigger production of glutathione in the liver, a key antioxidant needed for detoxification. Glutathione binds heavy metals and drugs in the bloodstream and makes it easier for the liver to cleanse your blood of these substances.


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