Vaccinium subgenus oxycoccus, commonly to the Britons as cranberry, is an evergreen prostrate shrub, marked by dark brown to red woody stems that lay our roots to connect with the ground. It showcases small, leathery oblong to ovate leaves and pinkish-red flowers that transform into small and a bit drier berry fruits.
Cranberry plants are widespread across the cooler regions of the Northern Hemisphere. It is cultivated for commercial purposes in Central and Northern Europe. Traditionally, its leaves and fruit are employed for the treatment of infections of the bladder, stomach, liver, and other chronic conditions such as diabetes and wounds. Today, cranberry is a prime ingredient of many allopathic and herbal medicinal preparations that are indicated for the remedy of urinary tract infections (UTIs).
Cranberries are packed with a good load of antioxidants that reduce the recurrence of UTIs, improve heart health, control blood sugar levels, regulate immunity, support heart health, and protect against stomach ulcers, gum infections, dental cavities, and even cancer too.
Apart from being a hero in herbalism, cranberry is enjoyed in kitchens all across the world as a sauce, topping, and stuffing. It serves as a perfect ingredient to go in the cocktails, syrups, smoothies, pies, muffins, salads, and bread.