Scientific name of raspberry is Rubus fruticosus and it is from rose family. This plant dates back to prehistoric times and it is believed to grow for the first time in parts of East Asia. Archaeological evidences show that the inhabitants of the caves of Paleolithic ate raspberry and has been part of human diet for many years. This plant probably has been transported by immigrants or animals to different parts of the world. Based on documentation that have been recorded by Paladios (the first bishop of Ireland Christians) raspberry was not cultivated and used for some reason until the 4th century BC. This fruit was a fertility symbol in the Greek myths during the Hellenistic period (from the third century BC to the first century AD). In the Greek stories it was said that the raspberry was white at first but dry-nurse of Zeus dyed this fruit with blood by putting thistle in their finger and after that raspberry became red. Raspberry was a popular fruit among people at medieval so that they used raspberry juice in artwork as color. For the first time in thirteenth century AD, King of first Edward encouraged people to cultivate raspberry all over the UK. Raspberry was imported by European immigrants to America.
1. Regulating Blood Pressure
A research in order to consider raspberry effect on reducing blood pressure in laboratory mice was performed. Mice treated by raspberry extract with 2 daily doses of 100 mg/kg and 200 mg/kg for 5 weeks. At the end of experiment serum density of nitric oxide, super oxide dismutase and plasma endothelin were determined. The results have shown that use of extract of this fruit especially in high dose significantly reduced blood pressure in mice. These results also showed that extract of raspberry increased nitric oxide and serum super oxide dismutase and reduced plasma endothelial. This raspberry property is dose dependent and is due to increase nitric oxide activation and improve function of vascular endothelial through the antioxidants of this plant. Raspberry is rich in poly phenol that these ingredients have potential cardiovascular protective effect. Polyphenols cause blood vessels to through the release or increase of biological activity of nitric oxide.
2. Promoting Weight Loss
A research was done for considering ketone of raspberry on losing weight and metabolism in laboratory mice. Mice received a high-fat diet with a dose of 0.5% and 1% and 2% of raspberry ketone for ten weeks. Raspberry ketone is aromatic compound of this fruit and their structures are similar to capsaicin and synephrine; and prevents gaining weight and creating fat tissue in liver. This compound increases norepinephrine and thus increases fat metabolisms. Findings of this experiment have shown that the compound of raspberry ketone increases fat metabolism and helps to lose weight and treat fatty liver. It seems this mechanism is caused by changing of fat metabolism or increasing fat metabolism as a result of increased norepinephrine. Researchers in another research (which it has been published in 2010) have shown that raspberry ketone increases level of Adiponectin hormone so with increasing fat burning, weight is reduced.
Researches have shown that antioxidants and tannin of raspberry prevent from creation of inflammation in stomach, intestine, bones and cardiovascular system also prevent degeneration collagen (the main protein of connective tissue) and help to restore cells. The other research has shown that the Ellagic acid of raspberry is anti-inflammatory and prevents activity or excessive production of some enzymes as cyclooxygenase-2. Based on animal studies, ellagic acid also inhibits unwanted or excessive inflammation.
Laboratory studies on mice have shown that extract of this fruit has more powerful anti-inflammatory properties in comparison with aspirin. Ingredients of raspberry help to reduce inflammation through inhibiting enzyme of hyaluronidase. The other research has shown that tannin is the reason why the hyaluronidase enzyme is inhibited. Compound of cyaniding -3-o-glycoside of raspberry extract has anti-inflammatory effects by inhibiting production of nitric oxide.
Sanjivani and colleagues did a study that based on that the Ellagitannin of raspberry extract caused reducing inflammation in stomach of laboratory mice. The results have been proved that compound of ellagitannin of this extract has protective effect against inflammation of stomach of mice. Ellagitannin inhibits TNFa. The necrosis factor of alpha tumor (or TNFa) is one of the most mediators in creating symptoms of acute inflammation in human body. On this basis the consumption of raspberry extract reduces the risk of ulcer.
4. Healing Wounds
A research in journal of diabetes and metabolism of Iran investigated the effect of raspberry on improving wound in the solar year 1394. In this research the effect of raspberry extract on wound healing in diabetic male mice was investigated. Anthocyanin of raspberry has unique antioxidant properties and antimicrobial properties such as the ability to prevent excessive growth of bacteria and fungi in the body. This fruit is rich in malic acid, tannin and antioxidants such as A, C, B and K that all of these compounds have anti-inflammatory effects and heal the wound. Raspberry is also rich in flavonoid that this compound has effective antioxidant properties on neutralize oxygen free radicals and has high power in restoration diabetic wounds. The results of experiment on mice have been shown that raspberry extract stimulates collagen making, it forms bunches of larger diameter collagen and therefore add to the healing rate of the wounds.
A research for evaluation antibacterial effects of alcoholic extract of raspberry was done in vitro (in vitro) in medical university of Tabriz. The results showed that raspberry extract was effective on two-way (both sides) of bacteria of staphylococcus aureus and listeria and candida fungus. So alcoholic extract of raspberry has showed its powerful effects on antibacterial and antifungal. Using this plant at higher densities and other methods of extraction will make its effects clearer. Due to the antibacterial effects of this plant on bacteria it can be used in antibacterial products in the pharmaceutical and food industries.
Studies by Dr. Daniel Nixon from cancer institution of America have shown that ellagic acid of raspberry prevents the cancer. This research showed that a cup of raspberry contains 40 mg of ellagic acid increases density of this acid in the body and results in the loss of cancer cells growth through the process of apoptosis (cell death). This process significantly prevents the growth and spread of cancer cells without damaging the body`s normal cells. The findings show that raspberry can prevent cancers of colon, breast, skin, prostate, esophagus and pancreas. Ellagic acid with removing free radicals protects body against different cancers.
7. Regulating Blood Glucose Levels
Researches have shown that two compounds of Rheosmin and Tiliroside of raspberry are useful for diabetic people. Tiliroside stimulates production of adiponectin in body. Adiponectin helps to maintain sugar and insulin level in patients with type-2 diabetes and has a key role in regulating blood sugar and lipid. Rheosmin also increases metabolism of body fat. In addition to natural glucose of raspberry fructose does not require insulin for metabolism.
Flavonoids: Anthocyanins (Cyanidin-3-Glucoside, Pelargonidin-3-Glucoside);
Flavonols: Kaempferol, Quercetin, Myricetin;
Simple phenolics: Hydroxybenzoic acids (Ellagic, Gallic) and Hydroxycinnamic acids (caffeic, coumaric, chlorogenic), Glutamic acid, Arginine, Leucine.
Raspberry was used as meal for 8000 years ago and then used as a medicine. The Romans used brewed raspberry leaf to treat various diseases. Hippocrates prescribed the brewed stem and leaves of this plant to eliminate problems and prenatal pains. Traditionally they used this fruit to treat gum inflammation (infection), throat pain and mouth ulcers and used raspberry juice to treat asthma and respiratory problems. The nature of raspberry is cool and dry and is a laxative and diuretic plant that purifies the blood. It is useful for heart strengthening and in addition to febrifuge it also works to treat constipation. In traditional Chinese medicine raspberry is used to treat urinary incontinence and strengthened the kidneys.