Raspberries are one of the most amazing foods on the planet. Not only are they loaded with dietary fiber, but they’re packed with amino acids, Vitamin C, and ketones that can encourage fat burning. Plus, they’re absolutely delicious!
However, it turns out the black version of raspberries are the better choice. While red raspberries are more common, black raspberries offer some pretty awesome benefits.
Black raspberries may look a lot like blackberries, but that’s due to their color (the result of anthocyanins). Black raspberries have smaller cells, aren’t as shiny as blackberries, and are less tart. However, it’s not all about the flavor and appearance—it’s really the health benefits that set these little berries apart.
We all know that berries are loaded with antioxidants. For example:
Cranberries are loaded with polyphenols that can inhibit breast cancer cell growth and reduce stomach ulcer risk
Acai berries are rich in antioxidants that can kill off human cancer cells, triggering a self-destruct response
Cherries contain quercetin, a powerful anti-cancer flavonoid
Blueberries have antioxidants that slow cellular damage and reduce the effects of aging on the body
Black raspberries are no exception to this rule! They’re rich in antioxidants—in fact, they have three times the amount of antioxidants you’d get in blueberries.
The antioxidants can offer some absolutely amazing benefits, as you’ll see by the research below:
Fighting Oral Cancer – One study used a concentrated black raspberry gel (10% freeze dried black raspberries) to target oral pre-malignancy—essentially malignant cancer cells growing in the mouth and throat, often as a result of smoking.
With daily application of the concentrated gel, “41% of subjects showed a decrease in lesional grade, 23% an increase in histologic grade and the remaining 35% no change in histologic grade”. The gel also suppressed the genetic loci that encouraged the malignant cells to become squamous cell carcinoma, a form of cancer.
Another study found that black raspberries also suppressed the pro-cancerous inflammation, encouraging cellular death of cancer cells.
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Fighting Esophageal Cancer – One study used black raspberry gel to treat Barrett’s esophagus, the only lesion that is a known precursor to one of the most worrisome types of esophageal cancer. Over 6 months, participants were given black raspberry powder. The powder helped to eliminate many of the compounds that could lead to cancer, and metabolizing enzymes were also affected.
Bonus: After taking the black raspberry powder for 6 months, the total cholesterol levels of the patients improved, indicating that the raspberries could help treat cardiovascular disease.
Fighting Colorectal Cancer – Another study used black raspberry powder to inhibit the growth of colorectal cancer tumors. 20 colorectal cancer patients were enrolled in the study, and they took the powder for 9 weeks. Positive changes were noticed after just 4 weeks, including positive alterations to the cancerous and normal intestinal tissues. The antioxidants in the black raspberry powder altered the cancer cells at a molecular level, leading to a positive outcome thanks to its ability to inhibit cancer growth.
Some pretty amazing benefits, aren’t they? As you can see, black raspberries are a fascinating food and supplement, one that would make a good addition to any healthy diet.
Not only can the black raspberries encourage better overall health (thanks to the fiber, vitamins, and antioxidants they contain), but these 3 studies show that black raspberries can specifically target cancer cells. The antioxidants in the black raspberries are able to trigger apoptosis, or cellular death, of cancer cells.
The downside: black raspberries aren’t as common as red raspberries. Most of the black raspberries come from the American Northwest, specifically in Oregon. However, they can be found around the Midwest and Eastern Unites States. They’re available online and in select stores, as well as in farmer’s market during the berry season.
However, you can also find black raspberry powder online and in specialty stores. These powders are made with black raspberries that have been freeze-dried and ground into a fine powder. You’ll find the powders contain the concentrated nutrients that were used in the above-mentioned studies.
If you’re looking for a solution to combat or prevent cancer, it may be a supplement worth considering. Studies have proven that freeze-dried black raspberries have the same anti-inflammatory effects as fresh berries, making them a potent source of important antioxidants.
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