Aronia berries are native to North America. They are relatively low in sugar compared to other berries, with 7.6g of sugar carbohydrate content per 100ml. Aronia berries contain very high levels of polyphenols which act as antioxidants. They are considered a functional food due to containing beneficial plant compounds such as anthocyanins and catechins, which help to protect the cells in your body. Anthocyanins are water soluble pigments accounting for the dark blue and even black colour of the fruits. The high antioxidant content has been shown to reduce oxidative stress which causes damage to cells, for example sunburn.
Pectins contained in Aronia berries act as a fibre source and feed beneficial bacteria in our guts to promote health, good energy levels and immune function. The berries are also a source of tannins, which have significant capacity to scavenge free radicals that could otherwise damage intestinal cell membranes leading to oxidative stress and inflammation. Mineral salts, such as calcium, are higher in Aronia in comparison to other berries.
Immunity and Energy:
The beta-carotene content is converted to the active form of vitamin A in the body, which is also a powerful antioxidant needed to replenish other antioxidants and is involved in immune function and cell production turnover to replenish new cells. The vitamin C content provides immune support. The B2 and folate content (B9) also contribute to healthy cell turnover and energy.
The berries have been proven to support the liver and stomach, providing protection from microbes such as Staphyloccus, E.coli and exhibit anti-vital properties against influenza strains. The berries also prevent toxicity build up in the liver and kidneys from substances such as heavy metals.
Aronia may benefit conditions such as diabetes by lowering fasting blood glucose concentrations.
Brain Health and Cardiovascular Health:
Neurodegenerative diseases such as age-related decline and Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s, can be slowed via the phenolic compounds Aronia contains. Aronia extracts have shown to be effective in restoring efficient memory and improving learning.
Improvements in high blood pressure, capillary conditons and poor circulation were also found with the administration of Aronia berries. The mechanism is said to be similar to anti-hypertensive drugs including ACE inhibitors.
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