A new study has revealed that drinking cranberry juice might play a role in protecting against cardiovascular disease.
Researcher Rodriguez-Mateos of the University Duesseldorf said that cranberry juice was a rich source of phytonutrients, including proanthocyanidins, anthocyanins and phenolic acids.
In the study, researchers gave ten healthy male subjects, between the ages of 18-40 years, 450 ml of sweetened cranberry juice made from concentrate. The cranberry concentrate was prepared with water to concentrations ranging from 0 to 117 percent.
Blood and urine samples were collected for 24 hours following consumption to detect changes in plasma and urinary cranberry-derived polyphenols.
Across the board, all of the cranberry juices benefited flow-mediated vasodilation (FMD) – including 25 percent cranberry juice, equivalent to the commonly consumed cranberry juice cocktail. The highest concentration of cranberry-polyphenol juice also showed improvements in systolic blood pressure.
Defending the health of the circulatory system and improving vascular function, it not only reduced the chances of developing atherosclerosis, but played an important role in kidney function, hormone delivery and waste filtration.
Rodriguez-Mateos said that their results laid the groundwork to better understand the array of potential vascular and cardiovascular health benefits of cranberry polyphenols, adding that the significant improvements in vascular function from drinking two cups of cranberry juice suggested an important role for cranberries in a heart-healthy diet.