Bilberries May Improve Eye Health
Chinese researchers at Jinan University recently found that extracts from bilberry may improve eye health by reducing inflammation of the eye.
Their findings were published in the March 2010 issue of the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry.
Although the study used mice, the researchers say the findings show the benefits may be the same for humans. They found that supplementation with a bilberry extract increased antioxidant activity of the blood which resulted in less inflammation of the eye.
These findings build on a recent but growing body of science linking bilberry extracts to eye health.
One such study by Italian researchers found that combining bilberry with a pine bark extract may reduce the risk of glaucoma.
Glaucoma is a blanket term for a group of eye diseases that gradually lead to blindness. Over 2 million Americans suffer from the disease and there are few early symptoms so many people afflicted with glaucoma don't even realize they have it.
Beyond eye health, bilberries may also be effective at reducing inflammation in our bodies as well as metabolic disorders like diabetes.
Berries have far ranging health benefits because they tend to have high levels of protective phytochemicals and flavonoids. Some of these benefits include decreasing the risk of bladder disease as well as a variety of inflammatory diseases and even some cancers.