Hawthorn Berries Nutrition Smoothie – Written by Ariane Lang, BSc, MBA and SaVanna Shoemaker, MS, RDN, LD — Clinically reviewed by Cathy W. Wark, R.D., CDE, Nutrition — Updated December 13, 2021
These nutritious berries have a sharp, tangy flavor and mild sweetness. They range in color from yellow to deep red (
Hawthorn Berries Nutrition Smoothie
For hundreds of years, people have used hawthorn berry as an herbal remedy for digestive problems, heart problems, and high blood pressure. In fact, the berry has been a key part of traditional Chinese medicine since at least 659 AD.
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Antioxidants help neutralize unstable molecules called free radicals that can damage your body when they are present in high levels.
Free radicals can come from certain foods. You are exposed to environmental toxins such as air pollution and cigarette smoke (
Polyphenols are associated with numerous health benefits due to their antioxidant activity, including reduced risk (
Although preliminary research in animals and cells is promising, more human studies are needed to evaluate the effects of hawthorn berries on disease risk.
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Summary Hawthorn berries contain plant polyphenols, which have antioxidant properties that have been linked to numerous health benefits.
Research has found that chronic inflammation is linked to many diseases, including type 2 diabetes, asthma, and certain cancers (
In a study on mice with liver disease, hawthorn berry extract significantly reduced levels of anti-inflammatory compounds, which reduced liver inflammation and injury (
In one study, researchers gave vitaxin—a compound found in hawthorn leaves—to mice with respiratory disease. This treatment reduced the production of molecules that trigger inflammation and reduced the inflammatory response of white blood cells (
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These promising results from animal and test-tube studies suggest that this supplement may offer anti-inflammatory benefits to humans. However, more research is needed.
Summary Hawthorn berry extract has demonstrated anti-inflammatory potential in test tube and animal studies. Still, research in humans is needed.
In traditional Chinese medicine, hawthorn berry is one of the most recommended foods to help treat high blood pressure.
Animal studies show that hawthorn may act as a vasodilator, meaning it can relax blood vessels by constricting them, ultimately lowering blood pressure (
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A 10-week study looked at the effects of taking hawthorn extract in 36 people with mild to high blood pressure.
Researchers found that those taking 500 mg of the extract daily had lower diastolic blood pressure — the lower number of blood pressure readings (
In a 2006 study, researchers gave 79 people with type 2 diabetes and high blood pressure 1,200 milligrams of hawthorn extract every day for 16 weeks. Those who took the squeeze had a greater improvement in blood pressure than those in the placebo group.
Still, more studies are needed to back up these findings. It is also important to note that consuming the extract is not the same as eating the berries.
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Summary Some research suggests that hawthorn berries can lower blood pressure by helping to dilate blood vessels. However, further study is needed.
Some studies show that hawthorn extract can improve blood cholesterol levels thanks to its flavonoid and pectin content. Pectin is a type of fiber that is involved in cholesterol metabolism
Imbalanced blood cholesterol levels — especially high triglycerides and low HDL (good) cholesterol — contribute to atherosclerosis, or the buildup of plaque in your blood vessels (
If plaque continues to form, it can completely block a blood vessel, leading to a heart attack or stroke.
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In one animal study, mice that received two doses of hawthorn extract had lower total and LDL (bad) cholesterol, as well as 28-47% lower liver triglyceride levels, compared to mice that received Extract not obtained.
Similarly, a 6-week study in rats showed that fasting triglycerides and LDL (bad) cholesterol levels significantly decreased when rats were fed hawthorn berry supplements.
Finally, a 6-month study in 64 people with atherosclerosis found that taking hawthorn extract at 2.3 mg per pound (5 mg per kg) of body weight significantly reduced the thickness of harmful plaque in the carotid artery. has happened
Although this research is promising, more human studies are needed to assess the effect of hawthorn extract on blood cholesterol.
Hawthorn Berry: Benefits, Side Effects & Dosage |
Summary Research in animals and humans suggests that taking hawthorn extract may help lower cholesterol and triglyceride levels. However, more human research is needed.
People have used hawthorn berries and extracts for centuries to treat digestive problems, especially indigestion and stomach aches.
Berries contain fiber that aids digestion by reducing constipation and acting as a prebiotic. Prebiotics are foods that nourish and promote healthy gut bacteria, which are vital to maintaining healthy digestion (
An observational study in people with slow digestion found that each additional gram of dietary fiber eaten was associated with a 30-minute reduction in the time between bowel movements.
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Additionally, a rat study observed that hawthorn extract dramatically reduced the gut transit time of food in the digestive system (
Additionally, research in mice shows that compounds in hawthorn berries can increase the production and activity of digestive enzymes—meaning they’re essential for digesting foods rich in fat and protein (
Summary People have used hawthorn berry as a digestive aid for centuries. It can help relieve constipation and increase the production of enzymes needed to digest foods rich in fat and protein.
Hawthorn berries can help prevent premature aging of the skin due to collagen degradation caused by excessive sun or ultraviolet light.
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A test-tube study found that a combination of hawthorn and ginseng extracts can prevent signs of aging by inhibiting the formation of wrinkles and increasing skin moisture.
Research suggests that this effect may be due to the antioxidant content of hawthorn berries. However, research in this area is limited, and human studies are needed.
Summary Some research suggests that hawthorn berries may help reduce the signs of aging as a result of their antioxidant content.
In an earlier study in 264 people with anxiety, a combination of hawthorn extract, magnesium and California poppy flower significantly reduced anxiety levels compared to a placebo. However, it is not clear what specific role hawthorn played (
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Hawthorn has fewer side effects than traditional anti-anxiety medications. This is one reason why scientists continue to research it as a potential treatment for central nervous system disorders such as anxiety and depression (
However, these studies used different species of hawthorn, not necessarily the berry specifically. More research is needed.
If you want to try a hawthorn supplement to help manage your anxiety, don’t stop taking your current medications, and talk to a healthcare professional first to make sure it’s safe for you. do
Summary Scientists are investigating hawthorn supplements as a potential treatment for anxiety. However, they have not yet been extensively researched for this purpose. More studies are needed on the effects of hawthorn berry on anxiety.
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Hawthorn berry is well known for its use in traditional contexts in the treatment of heart disorders, along with other traditional medicines. Heart failure is a condition in which the heart cannot pump blood properly.
Several studies have suggested that hawthorn berry may have beneficial effects without severe adverse effects in people with heart failure (
Studies mostly show improvements in heart function and symptoms of heart failure — such as shortness of breath and fatigue (
However, some evidence has suggested that hawthorn may be harmful in some cases of heart failure. One study found that taking it along with conventional treatments increased the risk of developing heart failure (
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Summary In some traditional medicine practices, people commonly take hawthorn berry along with other traditional medicines for heart failure. However, it can be harmful when combined with conventional medications for heart failure.
Hawthorn berries can be hard to find at your local grocery store. However, you can find it at farmers markets and specialty health food stores.
Hawthorn berry supplements usually contain the berry along with the leaves and flowers, although some include only the leaves and flowers.
Different brands and forms of hawthorn supplements have different dosage recommendations. Common doses are 250-500 mg three times daily. However, research has yet to determine the optimal effective dose (
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Keep in mind that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) regulates dietary supplements like hawthorn less stringently than over-the-counter or prescription drugs.
Look for products that have received the seal of approval from independent organizations that evaluate supplement effectiveness and quality, such as the United States Pharmacopeia (USP), NSF International, or ConsumerLab.
Summary You can eat hawthorn berries in several ways or take them as a supplement. However, appropriate doses are still undefined and further research is needed.
Many side effects have not been reported from taking hawthorn berries. Those present are mild to moderate.
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The most common side effects people have reported are sweating, headache, drowsiness, palpitations, lightheadedness, agitation, and gastrointestinal effects (
Although these are not life-threatening events, be sure to talk to a healthcare professional if you experience any of these symptoms.
Summary The side effects of using hawthorn berries are mild. These often include sweating, headache, drowsiness, palpitations, lightheadedness, agitation, and gastrointestinal effects.
Medicinal herbs are increasingly being used as alternative treatments for many diseases.