How do you take your cranberries? Cranberry juice is probably the most popular cranberry product, but cranberries are a lot more versatile than that. You can actually cook with cranberries, and it is a delicious way to enjoy the health benefits of cranberries. Most of the time we associate cranberries with health problems such as cystitis. Scientists first thought that these little acidic berries mobilized its acid to lower the chance of infection, or to control bacteria. Now, we know that it contains a substance that stops the bacteria from sticking to the cell walls. This stops the bacteria from multiplying. If, we could isolate the substance, it could be used to treat all sorts of bacterial infections.
In the future, we are likely to see more natural health supplements based on cranberries. We are still fighting a huge problem of antibiotic resistance. Scientists are not developing a lot of new antibiotics as they are not cost effective. Also, more and more scientists are beginning to turn to nature to find the answers. If, we can find out why natural substances or compounds work, it might just be better for us and make us healthier in the long run. Cranberries may have the answer to the way we deal with bacterial infections in the future.
In the meantime, it might be a good idea to add cranberries to your diet. Be careful with cranberry juices as many of them contain excess sugar, and that can stimulate bacterial growth instead. There is no reason why you shouldn’t invest in some freshly squeezed natural cranberry juice. Another alternative would be pomegranate juice which contains a very similar substance to cranberry juice.
Can cranberries do anything else for my health?
It is hard to say but many people with inflammatory disease claim that they feel better after drinking cranberry juice. It is somewhat surprising as cranberry juice is so acidic. More research is needed to find out what is going on here, but it could possibly mean that cranberries contain another element that we don’t know about. Alternatively, it may be the same substance that can help to improve urinary health, can help us to improve joint health. We need to know more before we say for certain.
Pot-roast chicken with cranberries
It is about time we learned how to cook with cranberries. A favorite winter recipe in our family is Pot-roast chicken with cranberries. Unfortunately, I cannot buy fresh cranberries, so frozen ones will have to do in my case.
This is what you need:
1.4 kg fresh chicken
225 grams of cranberries
1 tablespoon brown sugar
Juice of at least two oranges
salt and pepper to taste
4 sprigs of rosemary
1 table spoon honey.
Choose a roasting with a lid and where the chicken fits in snugly. Place the chicken in the tin, and add the cranberries all around. Mix the rest of the ingredients together and then pour over the chicken and the cranberries. I personally place the rosemary among the cranberries. Cook for about 1 hour and 20 minutes in a 190 Celsius oven. Save the cooking juices as they make a very delicious gravy or sauce. Lots of vitamin C from the cranberries, protein and zinc from the chicken.
This is one of those dishes which takes next to no time to prepare at home, and taste delicious. A nice addition might be some roast sweet potatoes, and you may even want to spoil your family with fresh kale and artichoke hearts to make it a truly healthy meal.
There is a lot more to cranberries than just the juice and cranberry sauce at Christmas and Thanksgiving. Cooking with cranberries is easy, and you may even want to add them to your cakes with a little bit of extra sugar, or Stevia as a healthy sugar replacement.
We should all try to vary our diets more, and adding fresh berries such as cranberries can really go along way towards doing so.
It will also teach your kids that fruit and vegetables can be incorporated in your diet in all sorts of way, and there is no need to be traditional. There are some interesting flavor combinations, and most of the time we worry too much about experimenting. Learn how to enjoy the health benefits of cranberries in many different ways.