Juice drinking has a rather complicated history. While some health gurus try drinking juices to “detoxify the body,” others say juice is loaded with too much sugar and too much of it can negatively affect your long-term health. In many cases, however, drinking a serving of certain types of 100% fruit juices can benefit your health in many ways by providing your body with the vitamins and antioxidants it needs — and cranberry juice is definitely one of them.
Plus, it’s not just for women! While drinking cranberry juice is a popular proposition for women’s health, there are other incredible benefits that all men can benefit from. Here are a few that will likely convince you to pick up a bottle on your next shopping spree. Then, for even more healthy drinking tips, check out our list of the 5 best juices to slow down aging.
Not only is cranberry juice nutritious and rich in vitamin C, but it is also known to be a great source of antioxidants.
“[They are] known as one of nature’s superfoods, containing tiny bioactive compounds called polyphenols, which over 50 years of research have shown to provide numerous health benefits,” says Audrey Perkins, senior manager at Ocean Spray with a Masters in Nutrition.
A report from advances in nutrition proves that cranberry bioactives can positively impact “blood pressure, glucose metabolism, lipoprotein profiles, oxidative stress, inflammation, and endothelial function.” Cranberry juice in particular is a powerful way to get antioxidants. A study out The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that consuming cranberry juice may improve the health of people with coronary artery disease.
If your mom ever told you to drink cranberry juice for your feminine health, she wasn’t wrong. This juice can actually have a positive effect on the health of your urinary tract and reduce the risk of infection.
“The unique combination of polyphenols in cranberries has non-stick properties that may help prevent certain bacteria from getting stuck in the body and help maintain urinary tract health for UTIs,” says Perkins.
Another study from the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition studied women who drank 8 ounces of cranberry juice daily and found that it reduced their risk of recurring UTIs by 40%. The FDA soon followed with a recommendation for women to consume cranberry juice regularly.
According to Perkins, following the recommendation of this study and consuming at least one 8-ounce serving of cranberry juice per day — like the Ocean Spray® Cranberry Juice Cocktail — can help reduce the risk of recurring UTIs in healthy women.
“The potent oxidative stress-reducing properties of cranberry polyphenols have been shown to reduce risk factors associated with cardiovascular disease and aid in heart health,” says Perkins.
A study from the British Journal of Nutrition confirms that consuming cranberry juice for study participants over a 60-day period resulted in improved cardiovascular risk factors due to the oxidative properties of cranberries.
Finally, according to Perkins, research suggests that consuming cranberry products may also help maintain a balance of good bacteria in your gut — which is important for reducing your risk of developing all sorts of diseases, including metabolic, heart -Circulatory diseases, immune and hormonal disorders, cancer, bone diseases, Alzheimer’s and more.
An animal-based study by colon shows the positive effects of polyphenol-rich cranberry extract, which has a positive effect on the microflora population in the intestine and reduces intestinal inflammation. Chronic inflammation increases the risk of many diseases, so it’s important to keep inflammation levels down in the body.
Kiersten Hickman is a freelance health and nutrition journalist. Continue reading