While many find the whole berry to be extremely sour, chances are you’ve enjoyed these little ruby red gems as a juice, sauce, or dried snack. This versatile fruit is bursting with antioxidants, which are most abundant in its whole berry form. This is why we preserve the nutrients of the whole berry in our Skin Nourisher capsule.
Antioxidants are important in skin health as they reduce oxidative stress caused by free radicals such as pollutants, stress and lack of sleep, even intense exercise! Oxidative stress is what causes our cells (and skin!) to age so anything we can do to mitigate that oxidation is beneficial over time.
Researchers are also exploring the effect of cranberries as a potential preventative for bladder infections, and a potential suppressant of cancer cell growth.
This study investigated the quantity of antioxidants in cranberry products. The researchers conclude that “cranberries are an excellent source of high quality antioxidants and should be examined in human supplementation studies.”
Vinson, Joe A et al. “Cranberries and cranberry products: powerful in vitro, ex vivo, and in vivo sources of antioxidants.” Journal of agricultural and food chemistry vol. 56,14 (2008): 5884-91. doi:10.1021/jf073309b
Phytochemicals in fruits and vegetables exhibit antioxidant activities, and “are suggested to be the major bioactive compounds for the health benefits” of these foods. This study examined the amounts of phenolic compounds in various common fruits. Of all the fruits studied, cranberry was found to have the highest total phenolic content.
Sun, Jie et al. “Antioxidant and antiproliferative activities of common fruits.” Journal of agricultural and food chemistry vol. 50,25 (2002): 7449-54. doi:10.1021/jf0207530
In this investigation, it was found that cranberry juice inhibited adherence of E. coli (the bacteria responsible for bladder infections). This held true for both animal and human samples.
Sobota, A E. “Inhibition of bacterial adherence by cranberry juice: potential use for the treatment of urinary tract infections.” The Journal of urology vol. 131,5 (1984): 1013-6. doi:10.1016/s0022-5347(17)50751-x
This study investigated whether the anti-adhesive components found in cranberry juice cocktail (CJC) could reach the urinary tract after oral consumption of cranberry juice. Within 2 hours of consumption, bacteria of the treatment sample demonstrated lower adhesion forces than the control sample, and this decrease continued with time. The results “confirm that oral consumption of CJC could act against adhesion of uropathogenic E. coli.”
Tao, Yuanyuan et al. “Oral consumption of cranberry juice cocktail inhibits molecular-scale adhesion of clinical uropathogenic Escherichia coli.” Journal of medicinal food vol. 14,7-8 (2011): 739-45. doi:10.1089/jmf.2010.0154
Cancer Fighting properties
This article states that several studies report that cranberries can suppress the growth of several different types of cancer cells in vitro, including liver, breast, colon, brain, oral, and ovarian. Additionally, “inhibition of prostate tumour cell growth has been observed with whole cranberry extract.”
Neto, Catherine C. “Cranberries: ripe for more cancer research?.” Journal of the science of food and agriculture vol. 91,13 (2011): 2303-7. doi:10.1002/jsfa.4621
The researchers in this study elaborate on the effects of whole cranberry extract (WCE) on the behaviour of human DU145 prostate cancer cells in vitro. Following the treatment, “WCE significantly decreased the cellular viability of DU145 cells.” These results support the potential health benefits of cranberries.
Déziel, Bob et al. “American cranberry (Vaccinium macrocarpon) extract affects human prostate cancer cell growth via cell cycle arrest by modulating expression of cell cycle regulators.” Food & function vol. 3,5 (2012): 556-64. doi:10.1039/c2fo10145a