Cranberries – Festive & Super Healthy!

by Her Happy Balance on November 5, 2013

It is official, I am proclaiming the months of November and December as national cranberry months! I would also like to announce that from now on, all work weeks will be 3 days or less! And no more taxes! Okay fine, I have no control over those last two things (a girl can dream) but the cranberry thing should really start to catch on 😉 Cranberry cookies, cranberry sauce, and garlands of cranberries are in our near future. Today I want to share with you some of the health benefits to these beautiful berries.

Cranberries

1 – Cranberries contain proanthocyanidins (PACS) which help maintain bladder health. These PACS have a mild antibiotic affect and help prevent bacteria from attaching to the lining of the urinary tract, thus preventing UTIs.

2 – High in antioxidants. Antioxidants combat free radicals which cause DNA damage.

3 – Contain many phytonutrients like quercetin and phenolic acid. These phytonutrients have been shown to help reduce inflammation of the cardiovascular and digestive system. In conjunction with the digestive system, cranberries can decrease gum inflammation, thus lowering risk of periodontal disease.

4 – May help with immune function. Some studies have linked cranberries to a decrease in cold and flu-like symptoms.

5 – May have anti-cancer properties. Cranberries have been linked to apoptosis (cell death by rupture) of tumor cells.

Most of the health benefits of the cranberry can only be attained from eating the whole berry. Pressed juices (besides being loaded up with additional sugars) do not contain the cranberry “pulp” or left over berry where the nutrients reside. Try using the whole berry whenever possible. One way of accomplishing this is by creating a cranberry and orange chutney/relish. You can serve it as a side to a meal, as a sauce for a sandwich, or as a dip for pita chips.

Cranberry Chutney

You can find the above relish and similar pins on my Autumn Pinterest board.

Thoughts??
Are you a cranberry eater?
I’ve always LOVED cranberry juice, but now I’m getting onto eating them in other forms as well.
Any amazing cranberry sauce recipes in your family?
Ever tried cranberries in a smoothie?
I foresee holiday-themed smoothies in my future!

Source of cranberry facts.

Comments on this entry are closed.

Jessie November 5, 2013 at 8:17 am

Interesting. I never knew some of those facts about cranberries. I don’t eat them often, but maybe it would be good to add into my diet from time to time.

Have a fantastic day!

Her Happy Balance November 6, 2013 at 11:11 am

Sneak them into things, like on top of salads 🙂 hope you have a fantastic day, as well!!!

Chelsea @ A Fit LittleOne November 5, 2013 at 9:52 am

I’ve only ever had them dry, defiantly not the best way to eat them since there is so much sugar in them, and I still don’t like them. I want to try them whole, a smoothie sounds amazing!!! I might have to try that sometime!!!

Meghan @ fitnesscrEATures November 5, 2013 at 10:02 am

Lesleeeeeee panda poo bear face! This is so adorable! Cranberries are totally festive and wonderful, but I must confess, I’ve only ever had them in their sugary juicy form. That stuff makes a great mixer (what’s the name of that fancy drink that is basically cranberry and vodka that you mentioned the other day?).
How was that Trader Joe’s juice? Does that stuff have some of these benefits?
How do you eat them if you buy them raw? I just know nothing about these little suckers but they are totally pretty so I’m willing to give them a try. Have a good day at work!

I’m with you on the 3 day work week. Shall we start a petition on change.org? :O
<3<3<3

Alex @ Cookie Dough Katzen November 5, 2013 at 12:01 pm

Cranberry smoothies sound good. I had my fair share of cranberry vodkas in college so I haven’t tried the juice in a while. 😉

Hannah @ CleanEatingVeggieGirl November 5, 2013 at 4:56 pm

I LOVE dried cranberries…I am seriously addicted! 😉

Davida @ The Healthy Maven November 5, 2013 at 8:08 pm

I honestly don’t think I’ve ever eaten a fresh cranberry! I’ve definitely eaten craisins and cranberry juice for those efibgeirbebveivevb UTIs ugh <–can you tell my displeasure? but never fresh. Remind me to change that k?

Her Happy Balance November 6, 2013 at 11:00 am

Girl, let’s not even get started on those, but I TOTALLY feel ya, THE WORST.

Kristina @ Damn Ten Pounds November 5, 2013 at 10:13 pm

Hi. I totally vote you in as an elected official. You have some policies I can really get behind 🙂

A cranberry smoothie sounds delish! I don’t eat them at all except for Thanksgiving. Ryan bought a bag from Costco thinking they were the kind of thing you could just pop in your mouth and eat. Wow, was he wrong!

Her Happy Balance November 6, 2013 at 10:59 am

Right?! Someone needs to do something about this 5-day workweek. It just doesn’t work for me 😉 And yeah I’ve definitely tried eating the berries alone and they are quite tart! Maybe if we cut them up and sneak them into a chicken salad that would help. Sneak them in wherever you can 🙂

Heather @Pinkaholic Fitness November 6, 2013 at 4:07 pm

Wow, I would have never known about some of those facts!

Thanks for sharing sweets! : )

Stephanie @ My Freckled Life November 6, 2013 at 4:45 pm

Yummm!!! I absolutely LOVE all things cranberry. Tart fruits (cranberries, pomegranates, raspberries, etc) are definitely my favorites. I didn’t know some of these things about cranberries though. Guess it gives me a reason to eat even more!

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