Updated: Dec 10, 2020
Bilberry is a shrub belonging to the Ericaceae family and one of the richest natural sources of anthocyanins. The dried, ripe fruit and leaves are used to make medicine.
•Maintaining Eye Health
Bilberry is largely known for its benefits in helping promote eye health. Several studies have examined the ocular benefits of bilberries. In one study, a combination of bilberry anthocyanins (a type of antioxidant) and vitamin E had a 97 percent success rate in preventing cataract progression. In another study, bilberry was found to help fight against endotoxin-induced uveitis (inflammation of the uvea).
•Maintaining Heart Health
Consuming this tiny fruit may provide big benefits for your heart. According to one study wherein participants consumed moderate amounts of bilberry for eight weeks, researchers noted that the berries helped decrease HDL (good) cholesterol levels, and helped improve platelet function and blood pressure. The antioxidants in bilberry may thin your blood.
Lowering the Risk of Cancer and DNA Damage The berry family is rich in anthocyanins that can help lower your risk of cancer and protect your DNA from damage. In a 2004 study, researchers discovered that consuming anthocyanin-rich foods can help inhibit key regulators that can lead to cancer, as well as helping reduce tumor growth.
•Reducing Inflammation Inflammation is your body’s defense mechanism when it deals with disease and eliminating pathogens. However, when it becomes chronic, it can affect your quality of life. In this regard, the anthocyanins of bilberry can help reduce your risk of unwanted inflammation. In a study published in The Journal of Nutrition, researchers noted that participants who consumed anthocyanin-rich bilberry extracts helped inhibit factors that stimulate inflammatory response in their bodies. They went on to suggest that anthocyanin foods may have a positive effect on alleviating chronic inflammatory diseases.
•Controlling Diabetes In Europe, bilberry is one of the most popular natural choices to help control diabetes and provide relief from its symptoms. The compounds in bilberry can help lower blood sugar levels by stimulating insulin secretion.
Different Use of Bilberry- extract, dried powder or raw.
Raw: Bilberry can be simply eaten raw for a quick snack.
Tea: Bilberry can be enjoyed as a warm cup of tea.
Pie: You can create a delicious pie by using bilberries as the filling.
Juice: The berries can be turned into a juice that you can enjoy any time of the day.
Jam: Simply boil the berries in water and a natural sweetener to make a delicious jam that you add to your favorite foods.