The use of cranberries for children: benefits and possible harm
One of the most popular and effective folk medicines has long been considered a red wild berry - cranberries. It is a real panacea that can cure and eliminate many diseases, and is used in the treatment of both adults and children. But in order to derive only benefits for the baby from the fruits of culture, it is worth carefully familiarizing yourself with the features of introducing berries into the children's diet, which will be discussed in the article.
Cranberries - Key Features
Due to its rich vitamin composition, cranberries are a worthy competitor to many other berries and fruits. So, the supply of vitamin C allows her to compete with lemons, grapefruits and oranges. Read more about the beneficial properties and values of this healing berry read on.
Did you know? Cranberries have many popular names, which can lead to confusion, because you can’t always guess which berry is meant. So, folk healers call cranberries forest grapes, snowdrops, spring grass, cranes, northern lemon.
Despite the rich assortment of vitamins and minerals that distinguish the chemical composition of the fruits of the culture, it is relatively “poor” in nutritional value. So, in 100 g of red fruits contains only 28 kcal, which explains their popularity in dietetics. The proportions of the components that make up the nutritional value are as follows:
- protein: 0.5 g;
- fatty: 0.2 g;
- carbohydrate: 3.7 g (divided into glucose - 2.5 g, fructose - 1.1 g and sucrose - 0.2 g).
As for the chemical composition of berries, it is rich in:
- water: 89 g;
- ash: 0.3 g;
- organic acids: 3.1 g;
- fiber: 3.3 g;
- vitamin and mineral components;
- specific plant compounds.
The vitamin component is represented by reserves:
- tocopherol (E): 1 mg;
- thiamine (B1): 0.02 mg;
- riboflavin (B2): 0.02 mg;
- pyridoxine (B6): 0.08 mg;
- folate (B9): 1 mcg;
- niacin (PP): 0.05 mg;
- Biotin (H): 100 mcg;
- phylloquinone (K): 5 mcg.
- ascorbic acid (C): 15 mg.
Did you know? The original name for cranberries is the crane berry. This name is due to the fact that the inflorescences of the culture on long stems reminded people of this particular bird.
The mineral component (macro- and microelements) is represented by the following particles:
|strontium||~ 26 mcg|
The healing power of cranberry berries is also explained by the presence of specific plant compounds - bioflavonoids:
- flavonols: 349 mg;
- anthocyanins: 1059 mg;
- catechins: 374 mg.
Cranberry fruits are rich in bioactive compounds, including tannins, esters and antioxidants. Contained in cranberries and components such as:
- saturated fatty acids: 0.11 g;
- polyunsaturated fatty acids: 0.022 g Omega-3 and 0.033 g Omega-6;
- Citric, malic, quinic, benzoic, ursolic, chlorogenic, oleanolic, succinic and oxalic acids: 3.1 g.
Did you know? In England, cranberries got the popular name of the bear berry, as the British noticed that bears often enjoy the fruits of the bush.
Useful properties of cranberries
- Due to the fact that cranberry berries contain the lion's share of the periodic table, they are known for their healing beneficial properties:
- possess general strengthening and immunomodulating functions;
- act as a febrifuge;
- able to destroy pathogenic viruses and bacteria, to qualitatively eliminate the symptoms of flu and colds;
- inhibit the development of carcinogenic cells;
- Vitamins belonging to group B have a positive effect on the functioning of the nervous, digestive, and circulatory systems;
- tocopherol prevents anemia, is responsible for the quality delivery of oxygen to the cells, helps to improve appetite, supports muscle tone, protects cells from oxidative processes;
- the richness of the cranberry composition with vitamin-mineral substances effectively normalizes metabolic processes in the body: it removes free radicals and toxins, which is especially important for children who live in large industrial cities with polluted environments;
- the fruits of the plant are an effective means of combating diseases of the oral cavity (stomatitis, periodontosis), which often bring a lot of trouble to children and their parents;
- regular consumption of berries prevents the development of pathogenic flora in the genitourinary system;
- Cranberries are recommended for use in diseases of the bronchi: they are advised to combine it with honey;
- it is advisable to introduce cranberry fruits into the diet of a child if he suffers from dysbiosis, diabetes, and low acidity of the stomach.
Useful properties of cranberries for children
The richness and diversity of the vitamin-mineral composition of red forest berries give it many useful properties for the body of children. So, the berry is used to eliminate the symptoms of colds, problems with the digestive tract, to eliminate vitamin deficiency and increase immunity.
Important! Before introducing cranberries into the baby’s diet, be sure to read the contraindications and harm from using this product.
The child's body is very sensitive to the effects of medications, especially antibiotics, therefore it is recommended to treat the baby by resorting to folk remedies, among which cranberries occupy an honorable place. The effectiveness of its use in the fight against colds (adenovirus infections, influenza, acute respiratory viral infections, acute respiratory infections) consists in its properties to saturate the body with vitamin-mineral substances, to strengthen it, in the ability to preserve the strength and energy of a small organism in the fight against diseases.
Cranberries are a popular folk antipyretic. This effect of the berry is explained by diaphoretic functions and the ability to reduce intoxication. Fruits have powerful antiseptic properties, are a good expectorant, which is also important in the treatment of colds.
In order to eliminate the symptoms of colds, a drink is prepared that includes cranberry berries and water: pour a glass of fruit with a liter of boiling water and bring to a boil. Then cooled and filtered. Take the medicine throughout the day (3-5 times), like tea.
Important! Cranberries go well with honey, which only enhances the effect of this alternative medicine, so cranberry tea is recommended to sweeten with honey. And the child will be more willing to drink a sweet drink.
To strengthen immunity
Wild berry is widely known in immunology, since it can quickly increase and strengthen the immunity of a child and an adult. The whole secret is that the berry is a rich source of ascorbic acid. It is also considered a powerful natural antiseptic.
The fruits of the culture contain many enzymes that do not allow microbes, viruses and bacteria to pass through cell membranes, which also serves to enhance immunity. For this, cranberries can be consumed both fresh (enough handfuls for a day), and as part of various means. Since the child does not always like sour red fruits, it is recommended to make a delicious cranberry “vitamin bomb” from them.
To do this, mix 0.5 kg of cranberry fruits and apple slices and grind well in a blender or grind.Then add the kernel 1 walnut, previously chopped. Pour the resulting mixture into a syrup of honey and water (1 kg and 0.5 l, respectively) and boil for 30 minutes. The resulting medicine should be placed in a glass container and stored in the refrigerator. The daily norm is 1 tbsp. l The medicine should be washed down with warm water.
Important! To cook such a “vitamin bomb” is necessary on low heat, otherwise the ingredients will lose their useful properties.
With vitamin deficiency
In early spring, late autumn and winter, cranberries take on the functions of a real lifesaver, since it is not always possible to buy overseas fruits and vegetables because of their sky-high price, and there are practically no home sources of vitamins at such a time, except apples and carrots. Cranberries can be stored year-round: just soak it in water - it will not lose its healing properties. It can be eaten separately, a handful a day, or as part of medicinal mixtures, for example, folk medicine men recommend chopping 0.5 kg of forest fruits with 1 lemon and add half a glass of honey to the resulting composition. Such a medicine is added to tea (2 tbsp.) 1-2 times a day.
In case of digestive disorders
If a child has malfunctions in the digestive system, cranberries can help to eliminate them, since they can improve intestinal motility, increase the secretory functions of the stomach and pancreas, help enrich the intestinal microflora, and improve appetite. Berries have anti-inflammatory and enveloping functions. In order to get this whole list of benefits, it is enough to eat a handful of fruits daily.
At what age can I use
It is generally accepted that fresh cranberries are introduced into a child’s menu only when they reach the age of 3. You can do this earlier, even starting from 6 months (if the baby is breast-fed) or 7.5 months (to children with HB), but only after consulting a pediatrician (who, most likely, will not allow to risk the baby’s health) and making sure the fact that the baby does not suffer from individual intolerance to this product.
It is necessary to introduce such a component into the child’s diet moderately, 1-2 drops of juice in the first days and gradually increase the dose to 30 g per day.
Children who are not yet 3 years old are given only that berry that has undergone heat treatment: for 2-3 minutes it must be placed in boiling water. Then it is added to the vegetable or fruit puree, which the baby eats daily.
Important! If the child has signs of allergies, skin irritations, symptoms of diarrhea, immediately stop giving the baby cranberries and the products in which it is contained.
Contraindications for the use of cranberries in children and possible harm
- Cranberries are strictly contraindicated in children with:
- individual intolerance to berries;
- poor blood coagulation;
- increased acidity of the stomach;
- liver diseases
- problem teeth;
- urinary tract diseases
- Irrational use of forest fruits is fraught with harm and side effects:
- exacerbation of gastric diseases;
- the formation of stones or sand in the kidneys, gall bladder;
- destructive effect on the teeth.
To diversify the child’s menu and not force him to eat sour berries, you can make compote, fruit drink or kissel from it.
Did you know? There is an original way to check the ripeness of cranberries: it needs to be thrown onto a hard surface. A ripe fruit should bounce.
To prepare a tasty, fragrant, and most importantly, healthy cranberry compote you will need:
- cranberry berries: 400 g;
- water: 2.5 l;
- granulated sugar: to taste.
Initially, you need to make sugar syrup, then add the prepared berries to it and boil for 10 minutes. Then the capacity is removed from the stove. Cranberry compote is ready, it remains to wait until it cools.
Video: how to make cranberry compote
Cranberry fruit drink
Children really like cranberry juice made from:
- berries of culture: half a glass;
- water: 1 cup;
- sugar: 100 g.
From the fruits you need to squeeze the juice and set it aside for a short while. Put the remaining cake in a pan, add water and sugar to it and boil for 10 minutes. Then the resulting broth must be filtered and pour cranberry juice into the liquid. Delicious fruit drink is ready to eat.
To make cranberry jelly you need to take:
- 300 g of berries;
- 300 g of sugar;
- 150 g of potato starch;
- 2 liters of water.
Important! To prevent an unattractive white foam film from appearing on the surface of the jelly, sprinkle it with powdered sugar.
- Berries must be crushed and squeezed their juice.
- Cake is sent to the pan, juice - in the refrigerator.
- 1.75 liters of water are added to the cake and boiled.
- While the mixture is boiling, it is necessary to dilute the starch in the remaining water.
- Remove the boiled mixture from the stove and strain.
- The liquid is again sent to the pan and boiled with sugar.
- Add diluted starch to a boiled compote, pouring it in a thin stream and constantly stirring.
- After adding starch, the jelly should boil for 1-2 minutes.
- The pan with jelly must be removed from the stove and add cranberry juice to the finished drink.
You can use cranberry jelly both warm and chilled.
Video: how to cook cranberry jelly
As a result, we can say the following: treatment can be delicious and without concomitant harm to health, because pharmacy medicines, in addition to treating one disease, can cause another. Folk healers know many natural medicines, one of which is cranberry. Means prepared from this berry will become not only useful, but also a tasty medicine for the child.