Aronia berries or Aronia melanocarpa are a type of small, round dark fruits that are primarily native to North America but are now more popular among people who want to live healthily. The berries are also called chokeberries, belonging to the family Rosaceae.
Aronia berries are considered an excellent source of micronutrients and have antioxidant properties among all other fruits. The high levels of vitamin C, polyphenols, anthocyanins, and proanthocyanidins provide a lot of health benefits, help fight against free radicals, and have a great impact on human health and well-being.
Aronia berries can be eaten as fresh fruit or can be used as an ingredient in recipes, such as juices and pies. The berries are a strong astringent and can leave the mouth feeling dry and sandpaper-like. Hence, it may not be advisable to eat them all at once.
These berries benefit many important systems of the body including immune health, cardiovascular function, and brain health, and have an anti-diabetic action.
What is the nutritional value of Aronia berry?
The nutritional value of Aronia berries includes:
- Aronia berries are low in calories and fats (100 grams of fresh berries provide about 50 calories).
- They are rich in antioxidants, such as polyphenols, flavonoids (such as carotenes, lutein, anthocyanin, about 1,480 mg per 100 grams of fresh berries), and proanthocyanidins (664 mg per 100 grams)
- A plentiful source of vitamins and essential nutrients, such as vitamin C, A, and E, beta-carotene, folate, and minerals (such as potassium, iron, and manganese). About 35 percent of daily recommended levels of vitamin C are in 100 grams of fresh Aronia berries.
7 health benefits of Aronia berry
Possible health benefits of Aronia berries include:
- Help reduce the risk of cancer:
- Studies have shown that Aronia berries have the strongest potential of reducing cancer risk.
- The antioxidants present in the berry, especially anthocyanins, help stop colon cancer cells from proliferating and growing, thereby reducing their growth by up to 60 percent.
- When the extracts are taken by women with breast cancer, it reduces oxidative stress on the body and reduces the generation of free radicals into the blood.
- Prevent or reduce the risk of chronic diseases:
- They are high in polyphenol antioxidants, which are known to maintain good health and have the potent ability to prevent chronic diseases, including diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and metabolic disorders.
- Help lower blood pressure:
- Aronia extracts have been shown to relax the tissue on the walls of blood vessels and help improve blood flow, thereby reducing the possibility of developing cardiovascular diseases.
- Many cardiovascular diseases reduce the ability of the blood vessels to relax, resulting in the hardening of arterial walls. They help reduce blood pressure and may help combat high blood pressure in the arteries.
- Improve heart health:
- Rich in antioxidants, Aronia berries help lower bad cholesterol and increase good cholesterol and improve heart function.
- Intake of Aronia berry juice, about 250 mL daily, decreases the bad cholesterol levels (low-density lipoprotein).
- Help manage diabetes:
- Aronia berries, as well as their juice and extract, are widely consumed to manage diabetes.
- Studies suggest that these berries can improve glucose metabolism and regulate sugar levels by reducing insulin resistance.
- Improve Immune function:
- Aronia berries possess immunomodulatory properties that can support and strengthen the immune system.
- Extracts from the berries have been shown to help prevent harmful bacterial activity by decreasing its protective biofilm production and viral diseases.
- The berry extract exhibited strong antibacterial activity against harmful bacteria, such as Escherichia coli and Bacillus cereus.
- Ellagic acid and myricetin in Aronia berry extract may protect against the influenza virus.
- Reduce the risk of urinary tract infections:
- Studies show a strong reduction in urinary tract infections in patients who had Aronia berry juice regularly.
- The berries inhibit the body's release of inflammatory substances, such as cytokines and interleukins, and reduce the inflammatory response.
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Istas G, Wood E, Le Sayec M, et al. Effects of aronia berry (poly)phenols on vascular function and gut microbiota: a double-blind randomized controlled trial in adult men. Am J Clin Nutr. 2019 Aug 1;110(2):316-329. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/31152545/
Valcheva-Kuzmanova SV, Belcheva A. Current knowledge of Aronia melanocarpa as a medicinal plant. Folia Med (Plovdiv). 2006;48(2):11-7. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/17408071/
Borowska S, Brzóska MM. Chokeberries (Aronia melanocarpa) and Their Products as a Possible Means for the Prevention and Treatment of Noncommunicable Diseases and Unfavorable Health Effects Due to Exposure to Xenobiotics. Compr Rev Food Sci Food Saf. 2016 Nov;15(6):982-1017. https://ift.onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1111/1541-4337.12221
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