More than ever before people are looking for ways to live a healthy and happy life, for longer. A key to this ambition is a combination of heart and cognitive health. We know that exercise is brilliant for both, but what else can we do to help ourselves?
One way to further support these goals is by boosting our intake of anthocyanins. Anthocyanins are naturally occurring plant pigments that give certain fruit and vegetables their deep purple, blue and red colours.
The haskap is growing its reputation as the new superberry, because it is ultra-purple. Each berry actually contains twin purple-blue berries inside, wrapped in an outer purple-blue skin, housing a deep crimson flesh.
As a result of their abundant vibrant colour, haskaps contain at least 3 to 4 times more anthocyanins than blueberries and have one of the highest recorded anthocyanin values of any berry; berries from our farm contain an average of 1108 mg anthocyanin per 100g fresh fruit. (A.B.K. De Silva and H.P. V. Rupasinghe, 2019, unpublished data)
Haskap berries also have a unique anthocyanin profile, with one specific anthocyanin called cyanidin-3-glucoside, known as C3G, making up 85% of the total anthocyanin content.
Research suggests that eating a diet rich in anthocyanins may be associated with reducing the risk of many chronic diseases including high blood pressure, heart attacks, type 2 diabetes, and cognitive decline as we age.
Scientists from Reading University recently published a ground-breaking clinical study looking at the acute effects of three haskap berry doses and placebo in older adults. The results showed improvements in memory (word recall and recognition) and lower diastolic blood pressure, with higher haskap doses being more effective. The positive blood pressure result was probably caused by dilation of blood vessels, as observed in previous anthocyanin studies.
At Haskapa, we are continuing to work with scientists around the world to research the potential positive effects of haskap berries and further investigate the power of purple. You could say it’s a subject that's close to our heart.
Bell, L. & Williams, C.M. Eur J Nutr (2018). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00394-018-1877-9