They taste great on their own, but cranberries can jazz up your main course too. By Estelle Low
Cranberries are proven to be effective in the prevention of urinary tract infection symptoms. Photo: ariwasabi / 123rf.com
One of the greatest health problems faced by women? Urinary tract infection (UTI).
According to the SingHealth Duke-NUS Academic Medical Centre, 20 per cent of women aged 20 to 65 will experience at least one UTI attack per year, and approximately 50 per cent of women will experience UTI at least once during their life. Worse still, UTI can occur repeatedly, no matter how many times you’ve had it before.
UTI arises when bacteria enters the urinary tract and reaches the bladder. It’s usually detected when symptoms like painful urination and discoloured urine are observed. To treat, the doctor may prescribe pain meds and antibiotics. He may also advise you to have some cranberries.
That’s a welcome suggestion, since cranberries are so much more palatable (and healthier) to consume than antibiotics. Long-term use of antibiotics may lead to drug resistance.
Research has shown cranberries to be helpful in preventing UTI, as they contain a unique combination of compounds that prevent bacteria from causing infection. A study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that drinking 240ml of cranberry juice every day reduces symptomatic UTI by nearly 40 per cent in women with recurrent UTIs.
Short of snacking on them and sipping cranberry juice, you can load up on the benefits by adding cranberries to your dishes. (Also read: 7 Best Foods For Your Vagina)
Ocean Spray, which supplies cranberry products, shares one clever way to do it. You’ll turn a predictable meal into something that looks like it came out of a conscious dining restaurant: photogenic and unexpectedly delicious!
Recipe: Grilled Salmon with Five-spice Cranberry Relish
Grilled salmon with five-spice cranberry relish. Photo: Ocean Spray
570g salmon fillet, 2cm to 3cm thick
2 tbsp soya sauce
2 tbsp orange juice
1 tsp honey
1 cup Ocean Spray Cranberry Juice Cocktail (available in leading supermarkets)
¾ cup Ocean Spray Craisins Original Dried Cranberries (available in leading supermarkets)
¼ cup finely chopped onion
1 tsp orange peel
¾ tsp five-spice powder
1. Combine relish ingredients. Cook over medium heat until mixture boils, stirring occasionally. Reduce heat; simmer 6 to 8 minutes or until onion is tender and mixture thickens. Cool.
2. Combine soya sauce, orange juice and honey; mix well. Add salmon, skin side up. Cover; refrigerate for 30 minutes.
3. Heat grill. Carefully oil grill grate and inside surface of grill basket. Place salmon in basket, skin side down; brush top with marinade. Fasten top of basket.
4. Place basket on grill, skin side up; cover grill. Cook for 5 minutes over medium heat. Turn basket so skin side is down; cover grill. Cook for 4 to 8 minutes or until flesh is opague and flakes easily with fork. Remove salmon from basket and place on serving plate. Slice into 4 pieces and serve with relish.