Berries and fruits are becoming more commonly recognized as important components of our diets, mainly due to the greater understanding of the benefits of antioxidants. This new excitement about berries has opened our minds to trying nontraditional and different fruits. One such fruit is the aronia berry.
Aronia berries are purple in color, similar in size to a blueberry and native to the United States. "Aronia" is the genus name, but you may already know this fruit by its common name, chokeberry.
The aronia berry is known to contain high concentrations of antioxidants and other beneficial compounds (Benvenuti, 2006). However, due to its harsh, sour taste, these super-berries have been limited in their use and overall customer approval (Kulling & Rawe, 2008). You can find aronia berries mostly in Europe in fruit syrup, juice, jellies, teas and wines. They are often combined with sweeter fruits, like apples, to make them more appealing.
One of the most important qualities of aronia berries is that they possess the highest antioxidant capacity of all berries and fruits (Kulling et al., 2008), coming in more than four times higher than blueberry juice, cranberry juice and red wine. Some reports suggest that aronia berries also may protect against colon cancer. Other studies have demonstrated that aronia berries may be useful in the prevention and control of diabetes.
Keep an eye out for this berry. There is a good chance that it is going to become more popular very soon in the U.S. once people realize its potential health impacts.