Cranberry - Very Useful Herb for Urinary Infections and Many Other Health Problems

Cranberry

Vaccinium macrocarpon Ericaceae.


Native to peat bogs and forests in North America) the cranberry is a slow-growing shrub. Now widely cultivated, the dark green leaves are topped by pinkish white flowers towards the end if May. The fruit used in folk remedies since the 16th century or earlier - is a small ,~reenish berry, that turns dark red as it ripens.


Parts used

  • Fruits
  • The berries are gathered when ripe in September.
  • They are consumed fresh, dried, or as juice and are also used to make capsules and tablets.

Constituents

Cranberry berries contain glucose and fructose, many essential minerals and several organic acids, including vitamin C. They are also rich in antioxidant anthocyanins and proanthocyanins.


Medicinal uses

Cranberry is recommended to complement the use of antibiotics in the treatment of repeated urinary infections. Scientific tests have demonstrated that it is the proanthocyanins, along with the fructose, in cranberry juice that prevent bacteria such as E. coli from colonising the cells of the bladder and urinary tract. It has been noted that cranberry reduces the odour of urine - an asset for elderly people who suffer from incontinence.Cranberry juice is also used to prevent the bacterial build-up on teeth, which leads to plaque and tooth decay.


Its vitamin C, along with various antioxidant minerals found in the berries can help to ward off colds and flu.


CAUTIONS

  • When using to treat a urinary infection, it is advisable to combine cranberry preparations with conventional pharmaceutical remedies, such as antibiotics.
  • People who suffer from an enlarged prostate gland or from an obstruction of the urinary tract should always consult their doctor before using any preparations that contain cranberries.
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PREPARATION AND DOSAGE

For internal use


TO TREAT recurrent urinary infections


DRY EXTRACT (400mg capsules or tablets) Take 1 capsule twice a day with plenty of water. FRESH UNDILUTED JUICE Drink 500ml twice a day. This treatment must be prolonged. TO PREVENT plaque and tooth decay JUICE Make up a solution of 3 parts cranberry juice to 7 parts water. Drink 0.5-1 litre a day.


Cultivation

Cranberries can be grown from cuttings or seeds, and are best suited to damp, acidic soil. Although the plant can become dormant to survive extreme cold, frosts will kill off any buds. Warmth and sunny conditions are needed to ripen the fruit fully.


IF SYMPTOMS PERSIST CONSULT A DOCTOR



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