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9 Major Side Effects of eating too many cranberries

Cranberries are the fruit berries that belongs to the evergreen dwarf shrub. It belongs to subgenus Oxycoccus of the genus Vaccinium and is a commercial crop which gets cultivated in many American states and Canadian provinces. Cranberries are mostly used in the processed form as jam, sauce, and juice. They are a good source of many nutrients like vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, dietary fibers and phytonutrients etc. that provides a number of health and beauty benefits. Although cranberries are good for us and provide a number of benefits, it is advisable to eat them in moderation. This is because too much of everything is bad and same is true for cranberries. In this article, we will know about the major side effects of eating too many cranberries, but first, let’s take a look at the below-mentioned nutrition chart of cranberries.

Nutrition Chart of Cranberries

Nutrition Chart of Cranberries
Source-USDA

Side Effects of Eating Too Many Cranberries

Side Effects of Eating Too Many Cranberries
Source-Pixabay.com

(1) Too Much Dietary Fiber Is Bad For Stomach

Consuming cranberries on a regular and moderate basis has been found to be very beneficial for our stomach and helps in keeping our digestive system healthy.

This benefit of cranberries is due to the presence of dietary fibers in them. The dietary fibers present in the cranberries act as a natural laxative which means it improves bowel movement and ensures smooth elimination of stool from our system. This not only provides relief from constipation but also aids in treating various gastrointestinal problems such as abdominal pain, irritable bowel syndrome, bloating, gas, flatulence etc.

Although dietary fibers are good for our digestive health, it is advisable to consume them in moderation. This is because too much intake of dietary fibers can do more harm than the good. Some common digestive issues caused by the over intake of dietary fibers are the poor absorption of nutrients, intestinal gas, intestinal bloating, abdominal pain etc.

In addition to this, dietary fibers are also known to absorb excess water from our system. This property of dietary fibers makes them efficient in reducing the risk of diarrhea. However, if you are consuming too many dietary fibers without drinking plenty of water then this can lead to dehydration which may increase the risk of constipation in our system.

(2) Too Many Antioxidants Are Bad For Our Health

Cranberries are an excellent source of many antioxidants such as vitamin C, vitamin A and other antioxidant compounds such as phytonutrients, polyphenols etc. that provides a number of health and beauty benefits.

The antioxidants present in the cranberries fight with the free radicals of our body stabilize them and prevents them from causing oxidative damage to our cells. This reduces the risk of several types of cancers such as stomach cancer, colon cancer, abdominal cancer etc.

They also aid in removing toxins and other impurities from our system and thus helps in keeping our vital organs such as liver and kidneys healthy. Some other benefits provided by the antioxidants are improved cardiovascular health, make our immune system stronger, improves cognitive functions etc.

Although antioxidants are great for us and provide a number of benefits, it is advisable to keep a watch on the antioxidants intake. This is because the high level of antioxidants in our system is bad for us.

As per a research conducted by the National Cancer Institute, it was observed that smokers who took beta-carotene supplement ( an antioxidant) in large quantity were more likely to develop lung cancer in comparison to the individuals who didn’t. Another study, conducted by the Office of the Dietary Supplements found that high intake of vitamin E in our system can increase the risk of hemorrhagic stroke.

This negative effect of antioxidants is due to the fact that in excessive quantity, antioxidants start targeting the healthy cells ( along with the cancer cells), causes oxidative damage to them and thus increases the risk of several cancers.

(3) May Develop Allergic Reactions In Some Individuals

Being a good source of many nutrients such as vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, phytonutrients, and polyphenols etc., cranberries provides a number of health and beauty benefits.

However, not everyone can enjoy these benefits.

Although allergic reactions due to cranberry are rare, It has been found that some individuals might be allergic to cranberries and they should avoid consuming eating cranberries. Some common allergic reactions caused by the cranberries are skin rashes, itchiness, swelling of mouth, tongue, lips, and face, severe breathlessness etc.

Suggested Read- 19 Amazing Health Benefits of Cranberries

(4) May Cause Hypotension

Regular and moderate consumption of cranberries has been found to be very beneficial for providing relief from high blood pressure or hypertension. Hypertension or high blood pressure is a major health problem that affects millions of people around the world and is a leading cause of various cardiovascular problems such as heart attack, heart stroke, irregular heartbeat etc.

This benefit of cranberries is due to the presence of potassium in it. Potassium is a vital mineral that acts as a natural vasodilator which means it relaxes our blood vessels, improves blood circulation and thus helps in regulating high blood pressure.

Although cranberries are effective in keeping high blood pressure under control, it is advisable to eat them in moderation. This is because too much potassium in our system can lower our blood pressure to a very low level giving rise to hypotension.

Hypotension is a condition in which our blood pressure drops down below the normal level giving rise to symptoms such as fatigue, dizziness, nausea, blurry vision, loss of consciousness etc.

Additionally, if you are suffering from high blood pressure and already taking medication for the same, then consuming cranberries in excessive quantity may interfere with the blood pressure medication and may worsen the situation.

(5) May Increase The Risk of Hypoglycemia

Eating cranberries on a regular and moderate basis have been found to be very beneficial for the diabetic patients and for the individuals who are at the risk of developing diabetes.

This benefit of cranberries is because of its low glycemic index. Being a low glycemic in nature, cranberries ensure that it releases sugar into the bloodstream at a slow rate and doesn’t causes a sudden spike in the blood sugar level, and thus aids in managing diabetes.

Additionally, the dietary fibers present in the cranberries reduce the rate at which sugar gets absorbed into the bloodstream and thus helps in keeping blood sugar under control.

Although cranberries are good for diabetic patients, it is advisable to consume them in moderation. This is because eating too many cranberries may lower our blood sugar to a very low level giving rise to hypoglycemia.

Hypoglycemia is a condition in which our blood sugar drops down below the normal range and gives rise to symptoms such as excessive sweating, excessive hunger, fainting, lightheadedness, nausea, vomiting, blurred vision, anxiety etc.

Also, if you are a person with diabetes and already taking medication for the same, then it is advisable to consume cranberries in moderation as excessive intake of cranberries may interfere with the diabetes medication and may worsen the situation.

(6) Eating Cranberries During Pregnancy And Nursing Stage

Cranberry is a powerful source of many nutrients such as vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, dietary fibers, phytonutrients, and polyphenols etc. and presence of these compounds make them very beneficial for us.

Pregnancy is an important stage in every woman’s life and at this stage, it is very important for the woman to ensure that she is eating a healthy diet. This is because what she eats not only determines her health but also the health and wellness of the fetus developing in her womb.

Cranberries have been found to be very beneficial for the pregnant women because of the abundance of nutrients such as vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, phytonutrients, and polyphenols etc. in them. The antioxidants present in the cranberries protect the mother and as well as the fetus from the oxidative damage caused by the free radicals.

Other nutrients like vitamins and minerals provide nourishment to the pregnant woman and the fetus and thus helps in maintaining a healthy pregnancy.

Although cranberries are good for pregnant and nursing women, it is advisable to stay on the safe side and eat cranberries in moderation and only after having a word with the doctor.

Suggested Read- 22 Wonderful Beauty Benefits of Cranberries For Skin And Hair

(7) Not Good For Individuals WIth Aspirin Allergy

If you are allergic to aspirin medication then you should avoid consuming cranberries in excessive quantity. This negative effect of cranberries is because of the significant amount of salicylic acid present in the cranberries. The salicylic acid present in the cranberries acts similar to the aspirin and if you are eating cranberries or drinking cranberries juice in excessive quantity then it can trigger aspirin allergy.

(8) May Cause Stomach Inflammation ( Atrophic Gastritis)

Cranberries have been found to be very beneficial for our stomach and aids in keeping our digestive system healthy.

The dietary fibers present in the cranberries act as a natural laxative, improves bowel movement and thus reduces the risk of constipation and also provides relief from other gastrointestinal problems like abdominal pain, irritable bowel syndrome, gas, bloating, flatulence etc.

The antioxidants present in the cranberries protect our digestive system and related organs like pancreas, gallbladder etc. from the oxidative damage caused by the free radicals, and thus reduces the risk of colon cancer, abdominal cancer, pancreas cancer etc.

Although cranberries are great for our digestive health, it is advisable to eat cranberries or drink cranberry juice in moderation. This is because cranberries might increase the rate at which vitamin B12 gets absorbed by the people with low level of stomach acids. Vitamin B12 is a vital nutrient that aids in the production of a digestive enzyme in our body and thus helps with the digestion and metabolism. High level of vitamin B12 leads to high level of digestive enzyme in our stomach, and this can lead to irritation of the inner lining of the stomach giving rise to Atrophic Gastritis or Hypochlorhydria.

(9) May Increase The Risk of Kidney Stones

Cranberries are a good source of many nutrients like vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, phytonutrients, dietary fibers, polyphenols etc. and presence of these compounds make them very beneficial for us.

The antioxidants like vitamin C, vitamin A and other relevant compounds like phytonutrients, polyphenols etc. present in the cranberries not only protects our vital organs like liver and kidneys from the oxidative damage caused by the free radicals but also aids in the proper elimination of toxins from our system.

When there are fewer toxins in our system, it reduces the burden from kidneys and allows them to function optimally.

In moderate quantity, cranberries are good for kidneys, but excessive intake of cranberries or cranberry juice may have an adverse effect on the kidneys. It has been found that consuming too many cranberries or drinking cranberry juice in high quantity may increase the risk of kidney stones.

This disadvantage of cranberry is because of a large amount of oxalate present in them. The oxalate present in the cranberries binds with the calcium present in our body, and thus give rise to kidney stones. If you have a history of kidney stones, then it becomes even more important to consume cranberries or cranberry juice in moderate quantity.

Reference(s)

https://food.ndtv.com/health/9-cranberry-benefits-powerhouse-of-antioxidants-heart-healthy-and-more-1278346

https://www.organicfacts.net/health-benefits/fruit/health-benefits-of-cranberry-juice.html

http://www.stylecraze.com/articles/amazing-health-benefits-of-cranberries/

https://www.nutrition-and-you.com/cranberries.html

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cranberry

https://www.webmd.com/vitamins-supplements/ingredientmono-958-cranberry.aspx?activeingredientid=958&activeingredientname=cranberry

Disclaimer

The information contained in the post is for general purpose only and shouldn’t be considered as a medical advice or as an alternative to medical advice. Although I’ve tried my best to keep the information contained in this post as accurate and updated as possible, I make no guarantee of the accurateness of the same.

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