American Cranberry

Vaccinium macrocarpon Ait.

Arándano rojo americano
Part used

Ripe fruit.

Indication

Prevention and adjuvant treatment of urinary tract infections.

AFSSA (Agence Francaise de Securite Sanitaire des Aliments) recommends its use in cases of recurrent urinary tract infections, especially as a preventive means.

Properties

  1. Anti-blocking bacterial effect.

The most widespread medicinal use of American cranberry juice is for the treatment of urinary tract infections. Initially, it attributed to acidifying urine, which inhibits bacterial growth. In 1991, it was demonstrated that its mechanism of action is due to the inhibition of bacterial cell (especially Escherichia coli P-fimbriated) adhesion to urinary tract walls. These bacteria are responsible for 85% of symptomatic infections. There are preliminary studies that show the potential usefulness against Helicobacter pylori and bacteria causing dental plaque, gingivitis and periodontitis.

  1. Cardiovascular effects.

Some research suggests that American cranberry can play a beneficial role in maintaining cardiovascular health, reducing total cholesterol and LDL levels.

  1. Antioxidant effect.

Both American cranberry juice and its main constituents (proanthocyanidins, quercetin glycosides and flavonols different) are antioxidants.

  1. Other effects.

American cranberry juice has been shown to have an inhibitory effect on the production of various inflammatory proteins, which, together with its salicylic derivative content could be related to a possible anti-inflammatory effect.

  1. Traditional uses.

New England natives used it for wound treatment (as poultices), for urinary disorders, diarrhea and diabetes.