Chokeberry health benefit by Ray Sahelian, M.D.
March 25 2014

Chokeberry is native to eastern North America and are often found growing in swamps or damp woodlands. The hardy chokeberry shrub reaches about 2-4 meters in height and withstands salt and swampy conditions. The plant produces very bitter dark purple fruit clusters that are often used in jam and wine making. Chokeberries have been an important and integral part of the native Indian diet for hundreds of years. For more info on berries.
   Chokeberry fruit juice and anthocyanins derived from the fruits have been studied intensively, particularly in Bulgaria and eastern Europe. Chokeberry appears to have compounds that are protective to the liver, have blood sugar stabilizing properties, anti-tumor, and have anti-inflammatory activity.

Nutritional content
Chokeberry contains a high concentration of flavonoids and antioxidants. Chokeberry berries are full of flavonoids, trace minerals and phenolic phytochemicals, including anthocyanins, of which it contains one of the highest of any known plant (several times higher than cranberry juice). Some of these specific substances include cyanidin-3-galactoside, epicatechin, quercetin, caffeic acid, delphinidin, malvidin, petunidin, pelargonidin, and peonidin.

Chokeberry health benefit
Chokeberry fruits are one of the richest plant sources of phenolic substances, mainly anthocyanins--glycosides of cyanidin. Anthocyanins are water soluble pigments accounting for the dark blue and even black color of the fruits. The main active ingredients of chokeberry melanocarpa fruit are phenolic substances, mainly flavonoids from the anthocyanin subclass. Chokeberry may be helpful in blood sugar control and reduction of cardiovascular risk factors..

Combination therapy of statin with flavonoids rich extract from chokeberry fruits enhanced reduction in cardiovascular risk markers in patients after myocardial infraction (MI).
Atherosclerosis. 2007; Naruszewicz M, Laniewska I, Millo B, D?uz.niewski M. Department of Pharmacognosy and Molecular Basis of Phythotherapy, Medical University of Warsaw, Ul. Banacha 1, Warszawa, Poland; Center for Atherosclerosis Research, Pomeranian Medical University Szczecin, Poland.
 This was a double-blind, placebo-controlled, parallel trial. Forty-four patients (11 women and 33 men, mean age 66 years) who survived myocardial infraction and have received statin therapy for at least 6 months (80% dose of 40mg/day simvastatin) were included in the study. The subjects were randomised to receive either 3x 85mg/day of chokeberry flavonoid extract or placebo for a period of 6 weeks. The study extract was a commercially-available product of the following declared composition: anthocyans (about 25%), polymeric procyanidines (about 50%) and phenolic acids (about 9%). Compared to placebo (ANOVA and Tukey's test), flavonoids significantly reduced serum 8-isoprostans and Ox-LDL levels, as well as hsCRP and MCP-1 levels. In addition, significant increase in adiponectin levels and reduction in systolic and diastolic blood pressure by a mean average of 11 and 7.2mmHg, respectively were found.

Hypoglycemic and hypolipidemic effects of Chokeberry fruit juice in streptozotocin-induced diabetic rats.
Methods Find Exp Clin Pharmacol. 2007. Valcheva-Kuzmanova S, Kuzmanov K, Tancheva S, Belcheva A. Department of Preclinical and Clinical Pharmacology and Biochemistry, Medical University, Varna, Bulgaria.
Chokeberry fruit juice is rich in phenolic antioxidants, especially flavonoids from the anthocyanin subclass. The aim of the present study was to investigate the influence of chokeberry fruit juice on plasma glucose and lipids in diabetic rats. Chokeberry fruit juice significantly decreased the streptozotocin-induced abnormalities in blood glucose and triblycerides  in diabetic rats and might be useful in prevention and control of diabetes mellitus and diabetes-associated complications.

Chokeberry side effects
No major chokeberry side effects have yet been reported.

Chokeberry availability
You can buy chokeberry from ingredient suppliers as chokeberry powder or a 2 to 1 chokeberry extract.