The blackberry is actually an ancient fruit, prescribed by the Ancient Greeks for gout, the Native Americans for stomach ailments. There are lots of health benefits of blackberries. Blackberries have recently been recognized as a leading source of compounds thought to produce health benefits for women, due to their high concentrations of phytoestrogens. Phytoestrogens, literally “plant estrogens”, have been of interest to the scientific community b/c of their possible roll in prevention of both breast and cervical cancer. Studies now indicate that berries may contain some of the highest levels of phytoestrogens. These compounds act as a natural form of estrogen.
Blackberries are considered to be an astringent because of their high tannin content. Studies show that tannins tighten tissue, lesson minor bleeding, and may help to alleviate diarrhea and intestinal inflammation. German health authorities recommend blackberries for mild infections including sore throats and mouth irritations. Traditionally, blackberries have been used to alleviate hemorrhoids because of their rich tannin content.
Blackberries abound in antioxidants, such as anthocyanin pigments, responsible for the purplish-black color of blackberries and may impart health benefits because of their antioxidant properties. Additional antioxidants in blackberries are vitamins C and E, and ellagic acid; all may provide protection against cancer and chronic disease. Cooking does not seem to destroy ellagic acid, so even blackberry jams and desserts retain ellagic acid health benefits. Interestingly, blackberries are a natural source of salicylate, an active substance found in aspirin.
The best benefit of blackberries are that they Blackberries are high in fiber and vitamin C. They are effective in the treatment of watery diarrhea, weak stomachs, inflamed throat, and laryngitis, as well as when applied externally in the treatment of wounds. Blackberries source of lycopene and ellagic acid, phytochemicals that prevent the cell damage that may lead to cancer. Blackberries are one of the few fruits that contain heart-protective vitamin E. Berries also strengthen blood vessels, protecting eyesight and reducing heart disease risk.