Bilberry Jam Has Amazing Anti-Aging Properties

For over a thousand years, European herbalists have recommended bilberry to treat many ailments.

A close relative of the cranberry, bilberry fruits contain flavonoid compounds called anthocyanidins. Flavonoids are plant pigments that have excellent antioxidant properties. This means that they scavenge damaging particles in the body known as free radicals and have been shown to help prevent a number of long-term illnesses such as heart disease, cancer, and an eye disorder called macular degeneration.

Bilberry's modern reputation as a healing plant was sparked during World War II, when pilots noticed that after eating bilberry preserves, their night vision was sharper than usual. Later research revealed that bilberries are powerful antioxidants, capable of protecting cells in the eye and other parts of the body against damage caused by free radicals.

Bilberries are truly an anti-aging superfood, improving memory, slowing aging processes in the body, and improving coordination and balance. Bilberry fruits are beneficial for sore throat, diarrhea, in treating night blindness, daytime vision impaired by glare, liver- and biliary problems, inflammation of the intestines, and gastric ulcers. Bilberries help prevent macular degeneration, a condition in which the light-sensitive area in the center of the retina breaks down. It may also help slow the progression of cataracts, a clouding in the eye's lens, and lower the effects of diabetic retinopathy, a degenerative eye disease that affects people with diabetes. Bilberry fruits help prevent and even reverse some damage caused by Alzheimer’s disease. 

They are helpful for discomforts that are improved with enhanced circulation, like varicose veins, poor circulation, and hemorrhoids. Bilberries are packed with antioxidants that help prevent heart problems and tumors. Dried bilberries are beneficial for stomach and intestinal problems. Bilberry leaf tea is helpful on the occasions of urinary tract infections, kidney stones, diabetes, and diarrhea.

In medieval times, people ate bilberries mixed with honey to relieve diarrhea and menstrual cramps. Recently, an expert herbal remedies panel (Commission E) in Germany endorsed bilberry as an effective diarrhea treatment.
This fruit and its extracts have marvelous anti-aging properties. Bilberry was first studied for its effects on poor night vision. Indeed, regular use of the fruit results in quicker adjustment to darkness and glare and improved visual acuity both at night and in bright light during the day. Bilberry may be useful in the prevention and treatment of glaucoma since it strengthens connective tissue and prevents free radical damage.

In the control of diabetes short term, one’s blood sugar is lowered and long term, one’s circulatory system is preserved. Connective tissue is not destroyed and capillaries function more normally.

In other chronic degenerative diseases, like rheumatoid arthritis, the inflammation and pain are reduced while damage to connective tissue is kept to a minimum.

Several human clinical studies have been found in the literature investigating possible new uses for bilberry, particularly visual dysfunctions, including those caused by impaired microcirculation and diabetes mellitus. 

Bilberry fruit preparations have been investigated for their effects on vision acuity in dim light, on patients with pigmentary retinitis when taken with beta-carotene, on night vision in normal subjects, on patients with diabetic retinopathy when taken in combination with beta-carotene, on patients with significant hemeralopia (diminished vision in bright light), on patients with macular degeneration, diabetic retinopathy, retinal inflammation, or retinitis pigmentosa, and on patients with progressive myopia. Additional studies also investigated bilberry's effects on the progression of cataract formation in patients.

Bilberry may be an effective treatment for certain types of cancers. In a study, the fruits extract was shown to inhibit new blood vessel formation. The
antioxidants contained in bilberry were shown to slow vascular endothelial growth factor. This molecules chemical job is to signal new growth. Invasive cancers use the process of blood vessel formation to increase blood supply, thereby supplying specific nutrients needed for tumor growth and subsequent invasion of surrounding tissue. 

The fruit was also shown to slow the growth of colon cancer cells in test tubes. This is all believed to be due to the antioxidant activity of the flavonoid anthocyanin. The fruit did not interfere with the growth of normal healthy colon cells in the test.

Iris Erlund of the National Public Health Institute in Helsinki, Finland recently (Feb 2008) conducted a two month study of berries' effect on heart health. The researchers concluded:
"In conclusion, we found favorable changes in platelet function, blood pressure, and HDL cholesterol after the consumption of berries for two months."
Bilberry fruit contains high concentrations of tannins, substances that act as both an anti-inflammatory and an astringent. The latter quality in particular may help wounds heal more quickly.
The anthocyanidins of bilberry have considerable pharmacologic activity. They are especially used as anti-aging substances. These bitter compounds inhibit collagen destruction, scavenger free radicals, reduce capillary permeability, increase bloods circulation to peripheral blood vessels and the brain, reduce inflammation and pain and relieve muscle spasms. It is one of the most popular over-the-counter drugs in Europe.

It is so effective that a single dose it said to improve one’s night vision within hours.

Bilberry fruits contain sugars, organic acids, essential acids; vitamins C, B1, B2, PP, and carotene; the minerals manganese and iron; tanning agents, pectins, and fibers. They contain neither fats nor cholesterol and provide only 80 Kcal per glass. Bilberry leaves contain tanning agents, organic acids, vitamin C, glycosides, and mineral salts.

This is an important fruit to add to one’s daily diet for amazing anti-aging properties. Be sure to buy jam that has no added sugar.

Difference Between Bluberries and Bluberries

Bilberry is a name given to several species of low-growing shrubs in the genus Vaccinium (family Ericaceae) that bear tasty fruits. The species most often referred to is Vaccinium myrtillus L., also known as blaeberry, whortleberry, whinberry (or winberry), myrtle blueberry, fraughan, and probably other names regionally.

Blueberries are flowering plants in the genus Vaccinium, sect. Cyanococcus. The species are native to North America, eastern Asia and Northern Europe. They are shrubs varying in size from 10 cm tall to 4 m tall; the smaller species are known as "lowbush blueberries", and the larger species as "highbush blueberries". 

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