Q: Lately I've been seeing white cranberry juice in supermarkets. Does it have the same health benefits as the regular version?
— Ariel Bourbonnais, London, Ontario

A: One of the great benefits of drinking red cranberry juice is a reduced risk of urinary tract infections. Chemicals in the berries called proanthocyanidins appear to prevent bacteria in urine from sticking to the bladder wall and causing an infection. Although the white juice—which is less tart—hasn't been studied as much as the red, it's likely to offer the same advantage. What it lacks is the same amount of anthocyanin, a flavonoid that acts as an antioxidant and is responsible for the berries' red color. That's because the white juice is made from fruit harvested a few weeks early. However, the difference is probably minimal. Again, more research is needed, but if you prefer the milder taste, go with the white—you'll no doubt be drinking in good health.
As a reminder, always consult your doctor for medical advice and treatment before starting any program.


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