Touted as the newest superfood, aronia is a deciduous shrub that belongs to the Rosaceae family. The shrub yields round, edible berries with dark violet rind and reddish flesh. Aronia berries are native to Eastern North America. The berries can be eaten raw or processed. They are renowned for their high levels of antioxidants. The berries are loaded with polyphenolic compounds including anthocyanins, caffeic acid, epicatechin, delphinidin, and cyaniding-3-galactose. In fact, aronia berries contain three times more antioxidants than blueberries! Curious about the many health benefits of this superfood? In today’s post, we are giving you 6 reasons to nosh on aronia berries:
Promotes Weight Loss
A 100 gram serving of dried aronia berries contains 16.9 grams of insoluble fiber. Fiber is an essential nutrient that promotes weight loss. It also improves digestive processes and even keeps the heart strong. Because insoluble fiber takes longer to process in the gut, you feel fuller for longer. When you feel full, you are less likely to graze on unhealthy foods. And when you make better food choices, you lose weight. Apart from promoting weight loss, aronia berries also lower cholesterol level. It also regulates bowel movement and prevents digestive disorders.
Protects from Cancer
Aronia berries are teeming with cancer-fighting antioxidants. A regular diet rich in aronia berries cuts the risk of developing cancer. According to a study by the Department of Nutrition and Food Science at the University of Maryland, anthocyanin prevents cancerous cells from multiplying. The researchers tested three fruits that contain this compound: grapes, bilberries, and aronia berries. They found that aronia berries contain the highest level of anthocyanin among these fruits. The same study found that the berries could shrink malignant tumors!
Protects from Infections
Aronia berries are also loaded with antiviral, antibacterial and antifungal agents. These compounds protect from inflammation and infections. The berries strengthen the immune system, protect from common colds and various bacteria. A team of Bulgarian researchers found that aronia berries kill type A influenza virus. The same study found that aronia berries trigger bacteriostatic activity against Staphylococcus aureus.
Aronia berries are packed with vitamin C. Vitamin C acts like an antioxidant, preventing free radical damage and common colds and flu. Finally, the berries are also loaded with quinic acid. This compound kills UTI-causing microbes.
Keeps the Heart and Arteries Healthy
Consuming aronia berries regularly cuts the risk of cardiovascular diseases. Apart from regulating blood pressure, the berries also prevent the formation of plaques that clog the arteries. This minimizes the chances of strokes, heart attacks and thrombosis.
Regulates Insulin and Blood Sugar Level
Apart from being low in sugar and carbohydrates, aronia berries regulate blood sugar level. It also boosts the production of insulin in the body. This allows the body to process sugar effectively. The berries also contain epicatechin, delphinidin, and cyaniding-3-galactose – anti-diabetic nutrients that keep the nerves healthy.
Collagen is a protein that keeps the skin younger-looking. As we age, the collagen level in the body decreases. This leads to wrinkles, dry, dull skin. The vitamin C in aronia berries boosts the collagen production in the body. It restores skin vitality and elasticity as well as promotes luminosity.