South America, including places like Patagonia, Argentina, and Chile, is home to a variety of berry species that are packed with nutrients. One example of this is a maqui berry, which is a dark purple–blackberry which has many things in common with other superfoods, like acai berry. The maqui berry is a type of nutrient-rich berry that is native to Southern Chile and it is made into dried powder and other supplements. The maqui berry is grown on a small–scale, fir tree in the Elaeocarpaceae family which is also known as Chilean wineberry.
Usually, people consume the maqui berry in powder or capsule form, but you can also drink the juice of maqui berry and eat the whole berries. The maqui berry offers a lot of health benefits for different parts of our bodies, including the central nervous system, cardiovascular and immune systems. The maqui berry is considered a functional food, because it is especially high in protective compounds, like ellagic acid, flavonoids, and delphinidin, and these components are also found in other superfoods, such as cherries, currants, pomegranate, red wine, and blueberries.
Many people say that maqui berry has a similar taste to blackberries. The maqui berry is smaller than blackberry and it has a lot of seeds inside. This type of berry can be eaten raw or you can cook it and they are often processed by drying and grinding them. The maqui berry does not have just antioxidant properties, but it also has antiviral and antidiabetic properties. High doses of maqui berry can lead to side effects, such as changes in blood sugar and indigestion.
Here are some health benefits of maqui berry:
May help reduces pain and arthritis symptoms:
The maqui berry can help to ease the inflammation, so it can be beneficial for people who suffer from rheumatoid arthritis and joint pain. Also, in traditional medicine, it has been used to reduce swelling, sore throat and dysentery, and a lot of other inflammatory conditions which are related to poor immune function. Also, the leaves of the maqui plant have been used to make dressings for a long time and they are applied to slow-healing wounds.
Helps maintain healthy skin and eyes:
Fruits and vegetables which are rich in antioxidants are good for defending the skin against age-related damage and other conditions, including skin cancer. Also, a high–antioxidant diet is a protection for the vision and it fights against the cellular damage which can harm your eyes. In one small study is said that the maqui berry can help in the treatment of dry eyes. Adults, who suffer from dry eyes, and who took 60 mg of maqui berry extract on daily basis in a period of sixty days have experienced significant improvements in symptoms.
After two months of supplementation, the maqui berry lead to increased tear fluid production and this has helped to reduce the dry eye irritation. Experts believe that the maqui berry can help to restore normal eye fluid protection due to its ability to fight against oxidative stress and this can damage the glands in your eyes.
Can promote cardiovascular health:
The maqui berry has powerful free–radical trapping potential and high antioxidant capacity. This can help to defend the body against the harmful effects of high cholesterol. In one study was said that the supplementation with maqui berry extract on daily basis in a period of 12 weeks can help to lower the bad cholesterol and increase the good cholesterol in adults, while at the same time, it can help to protect blood vessels against the damage due to oxidative stress and inflammation.
Supports metabolic health:
In some studies is said that the maqui berry has a positive effect on carbohydrate metabolism and glucose metabolism, which is possible due to the high amounts of delphinidin. In some studies are shown that in adults who have type 2 diabetes, maqui berry can help to normalize the fasting blood glucose and insulin levels. It has been found that the delphinol in the maqui berry is generally well – tolerated and it is unlikely to cause adverse effects against people who have metabolic problems.