NEW YORK: Drinking low-calorie cranberry juice cocktail may help lower the risk of chronic diseases, including heart disease, diabetes and stroke, says a study. Cranberries provide a rich source of protective compounds called polyphenols, which support the body’s natural defences and help achieve a balanced lifestyle to improve health.
To find the effectiveness of polyphenol-rich cranberries, researchers from the United States Department of Agriculture provided eight weeks’ worth of meals to 56 healthy adult volunteers, average 50 years of age. “At the start and end of the experiment, the researchers measured things, such as blood pressure, blood sugar levels, blood lipids, as well as C-reactive protein, a marker of inflammation,” said Christina Khoo, director of Research Sciences at Ocean Spray.
One group drank a glass of low-calorie cranberry juice twice daily. The other group drank a placebo beverage with similar colour and flavour. Individuals drinking two glasses of low-calorie cranberry juice a day improved across all the said measures. It’s a change that adds up and could be associated with a 10 per cent lower risk of heart disease and a 15 per cent lower risk of stroke.
“These findings suggest that polyphenols help protect our bodies, and may be adept at keeping a large number of ailments at bay,” Khoo said. The study appeared in the Journal of Nutrition.
Published in The Express Tribune, July 2nd, 2015.