The cranberry is often referred to as a “super food” and for good reason. Cranberries are low in calories, high in vitamins C, A and K and contain tons of antioxidants. They are also a surprisingly good source of fiber. This concoction is why cranberries take on a variety of roles when it comes to supporting better health. Here are a few places cranberries can make a positive effect.
Urinary Tract Infections
As many know, the cranberry is notorious for helping prevent and treat urinary tract infections (UTIs)—especially for those with recurring issues. Cranberries contain a high level of antioxidant proanthocyanidins (PACs). These antioxidants help stop bacteria from clinging to the walls of the urinary tract. To note, cranberry capsules yield the best results, as the PACs in juice are typically broken down before they reach the bladder.
Much like the way PACs stop bacteria from building in the urinary tract, they can also stop bacteria from building on the enamel of your teeth by creating an antioxidant barrier. Think of it as a sort-of armor for your teeth.
Cranberries may also have life-saving benefits. Research has shown that the nutrients in cranberries can actually help slow tumor progression in cancer patients by helping block cell cycle progression. This isn’t to say cranberries are a cure by any means. But sometimes a little help goes a long way.
It’s never too late to start managing your heart health. Some evidence suggests that the anti-inflammatory polyphenols, or plant-based chemicals, in cranberries can lower your risk of cardiovascular disease. This is due to their ability to prevent platelet build-up and reduce blood pressure. Keep your blood pressure in check with the Hypertension Management Program—eligible members can get a blood pressure monitor at no cost.