A glass a day of cranberry juice, can reduce cholesterol levels and slash the risk of a heart attack.
The fruit juice also raises levels of "good" cholesterol, in the blood by eight percent, which can protect the body against cardiovascular disease.
Scientists believe it as good as a glass of red wine, for health benefits. It improves circulation by increasing the levels of high density lipoproteins-"good" cholesterol-- which carry fatty particles in the blood stream away from the heart. A twelve week study, by a canadian team at laval university, in quebec, followed 30 men aged between 18 and 70 who where slightly overweight. In the british journal of nutrition, rearcher, dr charles couillard said, "we found that by consuming a daily glass of light cranberry juice, the good cholesterol, found in the blood increased. An increase in hdl cholesterol is a sign that the arteries are clearing up accumulated cholesterol, which is positive for heart health."
the findings follow studies showing cranberry juice, can ward off urinary tract infections, and cut the risk of gum disease, and stomach ulcers.
But dr couillard added. " to maximise the benefits of drinking cranberry juice, you will need to get more active, and eat less fat."
a recent laboratory study at the william harvey research institute, at st bartholomews hospital, in london found that cranberry juice helped prevent atherosclerosis.
June davison, of the british heart foundation said. " it is well established, that eating a diet that includes a wide range of fruits and vegetables is good for your heart, and can lower your risk of coronary heart disease."
" you should aim to eat at least five portions of fruit and vegetables a day, one of which can come from 100 per cent fruit juice."
I've heard that flax is really good for your heart health too. On one site I read that flaxseed can improve blood flow and moderate blood clotting. Apparently the Omega-3 in flax make red blood cells less likely to form clots which can cause a heart attack or a stroke.