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Luscious, Healthy Cranberries

Oct 9, 2007
Luscious cranberries impart a deliciously tangy flavor to any dish, from barbecues and sauces to beverages and pies. Add cranberries to everyday relishes for mouth watering results.

Buying and Storing Cranberries

Fresh cranberries are available in plenty from September to December. They are shiny and plump and range in color from light red to dark red. Berries with brown spots or those that are shriveled are best avoided.

Fresh cranberries will last up to eight weeks if sealed in a plastic container and stored in the refrigerator. However, if you'd like to have cranberries all year round, they can be put in an airtight bad and frozen for up to one year. Cranberries should ideally be frozen without washing. You can wash them just before using. Do not thaw frozen cranberries when ready to use, instead follow the directions given in your recipe.

Cooked cranberries can be kept in a covered container in the refrigerator and will last up to one month. Cranberries cooked in alcohol can last in the refrigerator many months.

The Many Health Benefits of Cranberries

Besides being a flavorful addition to any meal, cranberries are also loaded with nutrients. Cranberries are high in fiber and have only 25 calories per 1/2 cup, making them a wonderful low-fat, high-fiber meal choice. Cranberries offer more than 10% of the recommended daily allowance of Vitamin C and are also a source of calcium, iron and phosphorus.

Studies show that cranberries and cranberry products contained significantly high levels of antioxidant phenols and other phytonutrients that are credited with protecting the body against cancer, heart diseases and several other adverse conditions.

Cranberries also contain significantly high levels of flavonoids and polyphenolic compounds, which offer a natural defense against atherosclerosis.

Certain compounds present in cranberries decrease the incidence of tumor development and are potential cancer fighters. Preliminary studies indicate the strong possibility that cranberries could offer the brain protection against neurological damage including loss of cognitive and motor function.

Cranberries are very effective in helping prevent the incidence of urinary tract infection, by not allowing bacteria to stick to the urinary tract lining. They also lower the incidence of dental plaque formation by reducing bacterial adhesion to teeth.

Recent research also shows that certain compounds that are present in cranberries inhibit the adhesion of certain bacteria to the stomach lining, thus preventing the incidence of peptic ulcers.

Studies also show that daily intake of cranberry juice could potentially increase HDL or good cholesterol levels and reduce LDL or bad cholesterol levels.
About the Author
Learn about the health benefits of himalayan goji berry juice at http://www.gojicapital.com/
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