Packed With Disease-Fighting Nutrients
Cranberries are one of three fruits (including concord grapes and blueberries) whose origins date entirely back to North America. They were first noted by the earliest settlers to the US when Native Americans offered them to the English as a gift of food. Even today, a third of all cranberry acreage is located in Massachusetts coastal areas.
Native Americans not only utilized the cranberry for food but, it had important medicinal purposes as well. The cranberry was also valuable in the treatment of wounds, as well as a natural coloring and preservative for dying cloth. Due to its high Vitamin C content, the cranberry â€“ which could be dried for long voyages â€“ played an important role in preventing scurvy among early seafarers.
Cranberry juice has long been used for preventing urinary tract infections. Research has found that this is due not to the acidity as long believed, but rather to antioxidants. These same compounds are now believed to prevent bacteria that cause stomach ulcers. These compounds are more concentrated in fresh cranberries. Interestingly, the water harvesting method where they float in water causes a greater antioxidant content due to the effects of sunlight on the berry.
Cranberry juice is rich in flavonoid phyto-chemicals, and enriched with potassium and manganese. Anti-bacterial action also inhibits streptococcus and aids in fighting dental cavities. The flavonoid pro-anthocyanins are another benefit which has been shown to fight aging, bacterial infection, diabetes, neurological disease and cancer. Cranberries are rich in the anti-oxidants cyanin, quercetin and peonidin, which assist in the prevention of heart disease by fighting the development of plaque. They also aid in augmenting good cholesterol while removing â€˜badâ€™ (LDL) cholesterol from the body.
Cranberry Juice & Smoothie Recipes
Cranberry Apple Grape Juice or Smoothie
4 cups Cranberries
1 Apple – core, skin and all!
1 cup Grapes
2 cups Baby Spinach – I just love adding some greens to all my recipes for an added nutritional boost
More delicious and powerful recipes can be found in Juicing & Smoothie Recipes That Heal! available here in the box on the right and for Kindle, Nook and iPad users at Amazon, Barnes & Noble and iBooks.