Bilberry Extract (Vaccinium uliginosum)Back to ingredients
From: Throughout Europe
Form: Plant extract
Food source: Bilberries
Benefits of Bilberries
- Skin health
What are Bilberries
Bilberries, or European Blueberries, were one of the first foods to be labelled a ‘superfood’ and there are good reasons for this. Bilberries are rich in a natural plant colouring agent called 'proanthocyanidin'. Proanthocyanidins are potent natural antioxidants, which fix harmful ‘free radicals’ (unstable molecules) in your body and provide a range of health benefits. The darker the berry, the more proanthocyanidins they contain, so Bilberries are a very good source of these natural antioxidants; in fact, Bilberries are thought to have some of the highest antioxidant levels for any common fruit or vegetable.
One of the biggest benefits provided by proanthocyanidins is protection for the collagen in your skin. Collagen is the stretchy, structural component of your skin which helps to prevent wrinkling or cracking and it requires antioxidant protection. Studies suggest that the antioxidative compounds within Bilberries may help protect the skin from stress and damage caused by a range of factors such as UV exposure, pollution and poor dietary choices. You may also enjoy reading ‘The truth about collagen’.
Bilberry helps maintain eye health, providing antioxidant support for the eyes and providing a natural defence against free radicals. It also protects against tired eyes and supports your retinal function.
The powerful antioxidants in Bilberries may also be beneficial for our cardiovascular health. Antioxidants work as anti-inflammatories, supporting stable vascular and vein health - promoting improved blood circulation in the micro-vessels that feed your skin. This is why studies suggest that Bilberries can reduce blood pressure, especially for postmenopausal women and may reduce the level of oxidised cholesterol.
The word ‘superfood’ is thrown around a lot these days, and the list of so-called superfoods seems to be growing every day. One thing that’s not in doubt though is that Bilberries definitely deserve the label and can offer us some serious health benefits.