Cranberries & healing
I’ve been suffering from cystitis for a couple of years during my mid-twenties so I did my homework researching natural remedies that were suggested for UTI. I’ve tried many things, Cranberry juice was one of them.
Cranberries have moderate levels of vitamin C, dietary fiber and the essential dietary mineral, manganese, as well as a balanced profile of other essential micronutrients. (More info about its nutrients)
Thanks to Prof. Itzhak Ofek, a researcher at Tel Aviv University’s Sackler Faculty of Medicine, the world now knows that science supports the folklore. His research on Cranberry over the past two decades shows that its juice indeed combats urinary tract infections.
And it has additional medicinal qualities as well. Prof. Cranberry juice exhibits anti-viral properties against the flu, may prevent cavities, and lessens the re-occurrence of gastric ulcers.
Cranberry contains Proanthocyanidins, “anti-adhesive” compounds that prevent E. coli from sticking to the urinary tract. Recent research also suggests “the anti-stick mechanism of cranberry PACs is effective not only in the urinary tract, but also in the stomach and mouth,” says Howell. “In the stomach, they prevent the ulcer-causing bacteria H. pylori from sticking to cells. And in the mouth, they may play a role in preventing plaque buildup.” The anti-adhesion effect may start within two hours and last up to 10 hours after pure cranberry juice is consumed, suggesting that one serving in the morning and another in the evening may provide more effective protection than only one serving a day.
It may prevent the H. pylori bacteria that causes peptic ulcers from sticking to gastric mucous and stomach epithelium. A recent clinical trial using fresh and commercially prepared cranberry juices also showed a significant reduction in Streptococcus mutans, the bacteria that causes most dental cavities.
Ongoing research also suggests that the high levels of flavonoids in cranberry may naturally defend against atherosclerosis or clogging of the arteries by inhibiting low-density lipoprotein oxidation. Researchers at the University of Western Ontario are studying the potential anti-carcinogenic properties of cranberry and, while the laboratory results are preliminary, the compounds in cranberries show promise in lowering tumour development in mice that have been injected with human breast cancer cells.
Cranberries are also a natural remedy for intestinal infections. The fresh or dried berries have the advantage of passing through the digestive system without affecting it, and only begin to work when they reach the small intestine. Recent investigation would suggest that, in a decoction of berries, the disinfectant properties of members of the Vaccinium family are so powerful that they can sterilise bacteria in the colon.
Orally, Cranberry is used for prevention and treatment of urinary tract infections, neurogenic bladder, as a urinary deodorizer for people with incontinence, prevention of urinary catheter blockage, and to heal skin around urostomy stomas. Cranberry is also used for type 2 diabetes, chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS), scurvy, pleurisy, as a diuretic, antiseptic, antipyretic, and for cancer.
Cranberries healing properties for men
Cranberry is known to be rich in a compound known as quercetin which has anti-inflammatory properties in the body. And one study found that this can be effective in reducing the symptoms of prostatitis.
My favorite Cranberry Sauce Recipe
* 1 cup water
* 1/2 cup white sugar
* 1/3 cup raw brown sugar
* 1 (12 ounce) package fresh cranberries
* 1 orange, peeled and pureed
* 1 apple – peeled, cored and diced
* 1/2 cup raisins
* 1 cup chopped walnuts
* 1/4 teaspoon salt
* 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
* 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
In a medium saucepan, boil water and sugar until the sugar dissolves. Reduce the heat to simmer, and stir in cranberries, pureed orange, apple, raisins, walnuts, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Cover, and simmer for about 20-25 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the cranberries burst. Remove from heat, and let cool to room temperature.