Aronia ~ Super Fruits
We've long advocated berries, especially Acai and blueberries, for their wide range of health benefits for your heart and body.
That’s why they’re often noted as being an essential part of virtually any healthy diet.
But there’s a type of berry that’s not as well-known in North America, but is beginning to receive serious attention, and it could just be the healthiest kind of berry out there, which is why you'll want to consider adding it to your diet.
They’re called Aronia berries, or more commonly “chokeberries.”
They can be black or red in color, and the name of this super fruit stems from their bitter taste and astringency.
Along with the
cranberry, and other fruits and fruit juices, the chokeberry has several healthful properties.
Recent research has brought this super berry back into the spotlight, showcasing just how vital they can be to any healthful diet.
The research, presented in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, found that chokeberry extract tops the list of natural foods on the Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity (ORAC) scale, which gauges how well foods can protect us from illnesses that can affect the length and quality of our lives.
Topping the ORAC scale means that making chokeberries part of your anti-aging diet can lower your risk of chronic diseases, including cancer, Alzheimer’s disease, heart disease, metabolic disease, and stroke by a substantial amount.
A 2004 animal-modeled study showed that the antioxidant effects of chokeberry extract had a "gastro protective" effect in treating acute gastric hemorrhagic lesions in rats, suggesting it might be an effective natural treatment for severe stomach problems in humans, including ulcers.
A 2003 study has provided preliminary indication of defense against colon cancer.
If people would incorporate more fruit into their diet, and especially such high-antioxidant phenolics in fruits and fruit juices, as can be had from
chokeberries et al, they might actually obtain many of the benefits they need!
Native Americans used these berries for medicinal purposes, dyes for clothing, and for preserving meats and other foods.
Aronia berries have been proven to:
• improve circulation
• strengthen blood vessels
• suppress viruses
• act an anti-oxidant, anti-inflammatory, and anti-carcinogenic within the human body.
Given the amount of benefits chokeberries offer, it should come as no surprise that they’re an excellent source of
vitamins A, C, E, folate, and beta-carotene, as well as the minerals iron, manganese, and potassium.
Aronia berries also contain a ton of flavonoid antioxidants, including zeaxanthin, which reduces age-related damage caused to the eyes by ultraviolet (UV) rays, and several chemicals that act as free radical scavengers, preventing damage to DNA and changes to enzymes that lead to cancer.
Juice from this super berry contains a natural blend of polyphenolic antioxidants that combat the cell-damaging free radicals created in our bodies by stress, environmental pollution, medical x-rays, and other aspects of daily living (even exercise!).
Among those antioxidants are anthocyanins, which have been shown to help fight diseases caused by oxidative stress like certain types of cancer, cardiovascular disease, chronic inflammation, and liver function.
New research though, has shown that this super fruit:
• May offer protection for human blood vessels
• Contains rich amounts of flavonoids, polyphenols, anthocyyanis and powerful anti-oxidants
• Are a strong relaxing agent of the smooth muscle found in arteries
• Play a major role in keeping the blood pressure from becoming dangerously high
• Help prevent spasms in blood vessels
• Inhibit the development of blood clots and the early process of atherosclerosis
• Are very potent in helping relax the arteries, aiding blood flow, and protecting the coronary arteries from oxidant injury
• Have twice as much antioxidant power as cranberries and four times as much as pomegranates, strawberries, goji berries, and blueberries.
• And, are five to ten times more potent than cranberries for urinary tract health.
And that’s just chokeberries themselves; their skins contain additional vitamins, minerals, and dietary fiber, so be sure not to throw them away because they’re just as valuable.
The greatest benefit of including Aronia berries in your diet, in addition to also being low in calories (only 47 calories per 100 g. serving) and fat, is that they're one of the greatest natural sources of anthocyanis, a flavonoid antioxidant.
Published research in the journal Atherosclerosis found that the extract from chokeberries was able to eliminate particles of LDL (“bad” cholesterol) which were responsible for increasing the risk of a heart attack.
These super berries were also proven to reduce oxidative stress, which helps to reduce the amount of plaque in your arteries.
Just one 3.5-ounce serving contains more than 2,000 milligrams of oxidants, meaning it’s not hard to make them an effective part of your healthy diet.
When including them in your diet, be sure to wash them with warm water in order to remove the waxy coating they’re naturally
They can be added to muffins and breads.
They're also used in a variety of teas, syrups, juices, jams, and wines (remember, a glass a day is good for your heart)
that can be incorporated into your diet.
For the largest anti-aging diet benefits, eat foods that use the whole berry, although even the pieces are still good, and be aware that many chokeberry-based foods are high in sugar to mask the berry’s bitter taste.
Now, that's one powerful little berry!
Here's a marvelous recipe.
Aronia Banana Bread
Prep Time: 10 min.
Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes to 1 hour 15 minute
Makes 1 loaf of 16 slices
2 c. All-purpose Flour
1 tsp. Baking Soda
1/4 tsp. Salt
1/2 c. Butter
3/4 c. Brown Sugar
2 Eggs, Beaten
2 1/3 c. Overripe Bananas, Mashed
1 c. Superberries Fresh or Frozen
Preheat oven to 350˚F (175˚C).
Lightly grease a 9"x5" loaf pan.
In a large bowl, combine flour, baking soda and salt.
In a separate bowl, cream together butter and brown sugar.
Stir in eggs, mashed bananas and Superberries fresh-frozen aroniaberries until well blended.
Stir banana mixture into flour mixture; stir just to moisten.
Pour batter into prepared loaf pan.
Bake in preheated oven for 60 to 65 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into center of the loaf comes out clean.
Let bread cool in pan for 10 minutes, and then turn out onto a wire rack.
Now, let your family enjoy!
Natures Super Store
Super Fruits ~ Return
*** Our Featured Adverts ***