Monday, December 14, 2009

Cranberries for Christmas!

Even in Wintertime there are plenty of delicious seasonal foods to enjoy. One of these is none other than the sensational cranberry. Not only are they absolutely beautiful, they are also full of phytonutrients and antioxidants that make them one of the world's healthiest foods.

Cranberries are great sources of vitamin C, fiber, manganese, and vitamin K. They also help to prevent urinary tract infections, protect against macular degeneration, improve blood vessel function, and have a positive impact on cholesterol. They do even more than all this, but there just isn't enough space to list all the great research results!

These cute little berries are also super easy to integrate into our diets. Cranberry juice is always a good choice (and can be diluted with water, especially if it contains added sugar). Dried cranberries can be sprinkled into oatmeal, cold cereal, and other grains. They are also great in all sorts of baked goods, and can usually be used in place of raisins. Mix them with lightly roasted nuts for an easy snack and throw the fresh (or dried) version into salads. If you have a blender, you could also experiment with blending cranberries along with other ingredients to make all sorts of tasty concoctions. I recently saw a great recipe for cranberry-pear relish that I just might try out this year!

I hope you get to enjoy these festive berries this year!

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