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8 Benefits and Uses of Maqui Berry That Can Improve Your Health

by Matt Weik, BS, CSCS, CPT, CSN

It should come as no surprise that various types of fruit should not only be a part of your healthy diet, but they also provide you with a wide variety of health benefits. We commonly hear people talk about the benefits of apples, oranges, and bananas, but have you ever heard of the maqui berry?

The maqui berry is a wild fruit native to Chile and Peru. It’s also known as the Chilean grape, maqui, or Camu Camu. The Mapuche people of Chile have used the maqui berry for centuries to treat many health conditions.

The maqui berry is a small dark purple fruit that grows on evergreen trees in South America. It contains anthocyanins, which are antioxidants that can help prevent cancer and heart disease.

In this article, we will look at eight benefits of the maqui berry to help you understand why you should include this fruit in your diet or at least benefit from its use in supplements.

Disclaimer: This article is for informational purposes only and is not meant to treat or diagnose any condition. It is recommended that you speak to your doctor or dietician prior to using maqui berry to ensure it will not interfere or interact with any medication or drugs you may be on or cause any adverse health conditions.

1.      Loaded with Antioxidants

The maqui berry is a ripe, dark purple fruit that’s loaded with antioxidants. These compounds help neutralize free radicals, which are the harmful molecules that attack cells and cause them to age and die. Antioxidants may also help protect against cancer, heart disease, Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s disease, and many other illnesses.

Maqui berry is said to be packed with up to three times more antioxidants than blueberries, blackberries, strawberries, and raspberries. To be precise, they are rich in a group of antioxidants known as anthocyanins.

In a 4-week study, people who took 162 mg of maqui berry extract three times on a daily basis had a significant reduction in blood measures of free radical damage in comparison to the control group.

2.      Immunity Booster

The benefits of maqui berry are not limited to its antioxidant capacity. The fruit also contains high levels of vitamin C, which is essential for boosting the body’s immune system and fighting off illnesses. It can help you stay healthy during cold seasons, which is why it is often used to make natural remedies for colds and flu.

3.      Promotes Healthy Skin

The antioxidants found in the maqui berry help fight free radicals, which can damage cells and cause diseases such as cancer, heart disease, macular degeneration, and Alzheimer’s disease. Antioxidants neutralize these free radicals before they can cause damage to healthy cells in the body. Flavonoids found in the maqui berry also help protect against sun damage by inhibiting blood vessel growth in cancer cells.

According to studies, maqui berries nourish healthy skin cells. The ellagic acid they have may even suppress the skin damage caused due to harmful UV rays by restricting the enzymes that break down collagen.

4.      Lower Blood Sugar Levels

One of the most important benefits of the maqui berry is that it can help lower blood sugar levels. This is because it contains many antioxidants and polyphenols, which are known to help prevent diabetes.

According to test-tube studies, compounds found in maqui berries may affect how the body breaks down and uses carbs for energy.

In a study of people with prediabetes, 180 mg of maqui berry extract daily decreased average blood sugar levels by 5%.

5.      May Support Eye Health

The maqui berry is an excellent source of vitamin C, which is essential for supporting healthy vision. Vitamin C helps to strengthen your eye muscles and improves blood flow to the retina, which helps to prevent vision problems like macular degeneration and cataracts.

A study using test tubes showed that maqui berry extract prevented light-induced damage in eye cells, a finding that suggests the fruit may be beneficial for eye health.

6.      Anti-Inflammatory Properties

According to studies, maqui berries have the potential to fight conditions linked with inflammation, which includes heart disease, type 2 diabetes, arthritis, and certain lung diseases.

In test-tube studies, maqui berry compounds have been shown to have potent anti-inflammatory effects.

In addition to that, test-tube studies of the concentrated maqui berry supplement called Delphinol suggest that maqui berries may decrease inflammation in blood vessels which makes it a potential supporter in restricting heart diseases.

7.      Maqui Berry Improves Brain Function

Maqui berry is packed with compounds that help promote cognitive health, including anthocyanins and polyphenols. These compounds have been shown to have neuroprotective effects, which means they can help prevent certain diseases of the nervous system, such as Alzheimer’s or Parkinson’s. They may also help protect against oxidative damage to brain cells caused by free radicals.

8.      May Promote a Healthy Gut

Maqui berry is a great way to promote a healthy gut. It contains several compounds that help maintain the integrity of the gut wall and prevent damage from toxins, infections, and other sources. The antioxidants in maqui berries also protect against free radicals, which can cause oxidative stress in the body and lead to inflammation throughout the body.

Studies show that plant compounds in the maqui berry may help reshape your gut microbiota, increasing the number of good bacteria.

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