While we primarily focus on blood sugar health, we think it is essential to cover a range of health news. After all, nothing happens in a bubble! Your whole body needs to be taken care of. We think improving health through diet and exercise is a wonderful way to take control of your lifestyle and reach your long-term goals.
We’re always looking out for ways to boost heart health. A new clinical trial found that freeze-dried whole cranberry powder can aid heart health when taken regularly. The fruit has long been known to help the urinary tract and gut health. This new study makes cranberries even more appealing.
The study found that men who consumed nine grams of whole cranberry powder daily saw significant improvements in blood vessel and heart function after a month. Nine grams of powder is equivalent to 100 grams of fresh cranberries. The researchers saw significant improvements in the participants’ heart function just two hours aft eating the cranberry powder and lasting results after eating it for a month. That means there are both immediate and long-term benefits.
“Our findings provide solid evidence that cranberries can significantly affect vascular health even in people with low cardiovascular risk,” said Christian Heiss, a study co-author from the Univ. of Surrey.
It must be noted that some of the funding for the research came from The Cranberry Institute. However, it was carried out at reputable universities and was published in the journal Food & Function.
One of the biggest risk factors for heart disease is not eating enough fruits and vegetables. Polyphenols from berries have been linked to heart health benefits. Cranberries have unique proanthocyanidins with different properties than polyphenols found in other fruits. This may be why there were such dramatic results. Eating a diet rich in fruits and vegetables can support heart health. Berries can play a vital role in that. This study suggests cranberries could be a go-to option.
While this does require more study, these results suggest that cranberries have even more health benefits than we realized. Obviously, high-sugar cranberry sauce, cranberry juice and other sugar-laden cranberry products are not your best choices. You can take powdered whole cranberries, like the people in this study did, or add cranberries to smoothies or salsa. Or make your own cranberry sauce with noncaloric sweeteners and enjoy a taste of the holidays any time to boost heart health!