Gooseberry: what is it, benefits and how to use it?

Gooseberry is a red berry rich in several vitamins, minerals and antioxidant compounds. Consumption of it helps to protect heart and eye health, control diabetes and weight loss.

Furthermore, the nutrients found in it help to improve the skin’s appearance and keep it younger and healthier.

What is gooseberry?

Gooseberry is the popular name in Brazil for some fruits of the Ribes genus . They are divided into white, red and black varieties, the latter being better known as blackcurrants. Fruits are small and rounded and have a translucent skin. ( 1 )

They are sweet and very appreciated in the form of sauces, juices, wine or in nature and are rich in various antioxidants and essential nutrients. ( 2 )

Gooseberry is widely cultivated in cold European countries, where its consumption is quite popular. In Brazil, due to the unfavorable climate, it is not easily found.

What are the health benefits of fruit?

Each 100 gram serving contains 1.4 grams of protein, 14 grams of carbohydrates and various minerals such as calcium, magnesium, iron , potassium and phosphorus.

It also has large amounts of vitamins A and C, low caloric value and a good amount of dietary fiber . ( 1 )

Help with weight control

One of the main benefits of this fruit is that it helps you lose those extra pounds in a healthy and tasty way.

Calcium, found in the composition of the fruit, limits the absorption of fat and also acts as a thermogenic , increasing body temperature and caloric expenditure. ( 3 )

In addition, blackcurrant is low in calories. Which means that consuming it won’t make you ingest more energy than you need. ( 1 )

The presence of fibers increases the feeling of satiety and the expulsion of all the fat that has not been absorbed by the body. ( 4 )

Improves skin appearance

Yes, eating gooseberries also helps to make your skin firmer and more beautiful. This happens because of the nutritional composition of it, abundant in vitamin C .

The red variety, for example, has 41 ml of the vitamin, which is more than half of the daily indication for an adult person. ( 1 )

This micronutrient acts by stimulating the production of new body cells, especially those that produce collagen , which is a protein responsible for the skin’s firmness and elasticity .

Added to this, the consumption of this fruit also serves to prevent the appearance of the dreaded wrinkles and spots caused by exposure to the sun, as it stimulates cell renewal and healing . ( 5 )

Helps prevent heart disease

Gooseberry also has the benefit of protecting and stimulating the heart , reducing the risk of cardiovascular accidents and other heart problems .

This property of gooseberry is derived from the various antioxidant compounds found in the pulp. ( 6 )

All of these substances have in common the potential of “scavenging” molecules that cause cell damage, the so-called free radicals, preventing them from circulating freely throughout the body.

This serves to protect the heart cells from the action of harmful components, such as fat . Thus, the consumption of antioxidant foods can drastically reduce the risk of developing cardiovascular disease. ( 7 )

Allied to these substances are fibers, which prevent the absorption of ingested fat, reducing the risk of problems related to high cholesterol and clogging of the arteries . ( 4 )

Controls blood sugar levels

One more benefit of this powerful fruit is in controlling blood sugar levels.

Some compounds in the fruit are able to inhibit the release of enzymes responsible for transforming the ingested carbohydrate into sugar.

In the case of patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus, this is a mechanism that does not work properly and causes more glucose to be produced than is really necessary, which causes the disease.

Thus, the consumption of blackcurrant helps to regulate this action of the body, by inhibiting these enzymes, keeping the levels of sugar released under control . ( 8 )

But that’s not just why gooseberry is beneficial for diabetics . The large amount of soluble fiber in the fruit also hinders the absorption of carbohydrates, which are metabolized into sugar. What provides control of the disease. ( 4 )

How to consume?

The blackcurrant can be consumed in its natural state, used in the preparation of juices, jellies and sauces. It is also used in the form of syrups to prepare alcoholic drinks .

The fruit can still be consumed in the form of oil, which is sold in capsules, and which has all the benefits and concentrated properties.

Where to find

Despite the adverse conditions for cultivation in Brazil, the currant can be found in municipal markets or in internet stores in fresh versions , such as oil or syrup. 

Ellie Lauderdale

My name is Ellie Lauderdale, MD and I am USA based professional Nutritionist .

I am a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist and board certified specialist in sports dietetics who is trained in integrative medicine. I have worked with hundreds of clients, from those suffering with chronic disease to professional and olympian athletes. My goal is to help optimize you from the inside so that you can feel, perform, and look your best on the outside.

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