G is for GRAPES!
Grapes contain powerful antioxidants known as polyphenols, which may slow down or prevent many types of cancers including esophageal, lung, mouth, pharynx, endometrial, pancreatic, prostate and colon.
A study conducted in 2010 found that Concord grapes inhibit angiogenesis which can promote the growth of new blood vessels to feed and metastasize a cancerous tumor. Another study found that participants who regularly consumed Concord grape juice had more white blood cells in their bloodstream which can help fight off viruses, bacteria and other foreign invaders threatening your health such as cancer cells.
The most famous type of polyphenol is resveratrol which is found in red wine and improves heart health. This resveratrol is found in the skins of red grapes.
The mostly beneficially traits for our health come from a species of grapes known as VITIS LABRUSCA, a.k.a Concord grapes. These are often used to make grape jelly, juice, pies, grape flavored soft drinks, and candy.
Besides from being a good source of manganese and vitamin C, concord grapes have high levels of poly phenols. This is why this species of grapes has a very dark color.
Benefits of eating concord grapes:
Research shows that eating both the fruit and the juice of Concord grapes can have a significant impact on our health.
Lowers Blood Pressure
A study published in 2004 by “Biofactors”, stated that researchers from the University of Kyunghee in Korea discovered that a group of individuals who actively drank concord grape juice for eight weeks had a lowered blood pressure as compared to the group that was not drinking it. It was noted that this change was due to the high content of polyphenols in concord grape juice.
Promotes cardiovascular health
The antioxidants help minimize the damaging effects of the low-density lipoprotein (bad cholesterol) and help support healthy, clear arteries, reducing chances of thrombosis in the heart arteries.
Both wine and Concord grape juice are made from rich, dark, whole grapes containing polyphenols found naturally in the fruit. It appears that grape juice can help keep arteries flexible supporting healthy blood circulation throughout the body.
An emerging area looking to be promising for promoting cognitive functioning is the effect Concord grapes have on reducing memory decline in older adults. Researchers examined the effects of concord grape juice on memory, and according to findings reported in the issue of “British Journal of Nutrition”, participants with mild memory decline received concord grape juice for 12 weeks and it was found that they experienced improvements in memory.
Promotes a healthy immune system
Concord grapes are a rich source of vitamin C and polyphenols, both which may play a role in supporting a healthy immune system. One study found that when 100 percent Concord grape juice was fortified with vitamin C, it increased a type of immune cell—the gamma delta T cell—which sends signals to the immune system to respond.