Merry Christmas everyone! This time of year is joyous and celebratory for many around the world because of the giving and receiving, time spent with loved ones, and lots of tasty treats.
One of the super foods consumed by most people this time of year is the cranberry sauce. However, many take the convenient route and open up a can and plop it onto the porcelain dish.
Cranberries are native to the cooler climates of the northern hemisphere and are farmed in acidic bogs. Wouldn’t it be incredible to wade through a lake of cranberries in rubber overalls? I would love that!
Research shows that cranberries are effective for preventing urinary tract infections although not enough evidence to suggest cranberries treat UTIs. There is some evidence to suggest cranberries help:
Benign Prostate Hypertrophy, H.Pylori, Kidney Stones, Memory, Metabolic syndrome, Type II Diabetes, Urinary odor, Chronic fatigue and Cancer.
Cranberries do improve immune cell function and can also boost white blood cell activity! Anthocyadins and proanthocyanidins are prevalent phytochemicals and part of the protective element of the cranberry fruit.
These phytochemicals and the fructose in the cranberry inhibits bacteria from attaching to urinary tract cells. Anthyocyandins and proanthocyanidins are most prevalent in the fresh fruit.
Anthocyandins and proanthocyanidins are significantly decreased in dried cranberries and canned cranberries.
Since cranberries are native to the Northern Hemisphere, Native Americans have used it in ancient medicine therapy for kidney stone prevention and blood detoxification.
For prevention, best to use the cranberry concentrate since it does not contain added sugars and you can drink one ounce per day. If you do not have sugar sensitivity than taking 1 ounce of the juice cocktail, three times per day is also sufficient.
A note for those taking prescription medications and medical conditions: Caution with warfarin and talk with your cardiologist before taking regular doses of cranberry products. Diabetes- elevated blood glucose levels solution: unsweetened or artificially sweetened products. Can decrease urine pH
D-Mannose. In: Natural Medicines Database. Somerville, MA: Therapeutic Research Faculty; c 1995-2015. https://naturalmedicines-therapeuticresearch-com.buproxy.bastyr.edu/databases/food,-herbs-supplements/professional.aspx?productid=1114. Assessed on February 19, 2015.
Gaby AR. Nutritional Medicine. Concord, NH, Fritz Perlberg Publishing; 2011:800.
Kranjčec B, Papeš D, and Altarac S. D-mannose powder for prophylaxis of recurrent urinary tract infections in women: a randomized clinical trial. World J Urol. 2014;32(1): 79-84. doi: 10.1007/s00345-013-1091-6.
Vandana S, Ichikawa M, and Freeze HH. Mannose metabolism: More than meets the eye. Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2014; 453(2): 220-228. doi:10.1016/j.bbrc.2014.06.021.