But there’s something else: All PACs aren’t born equal. Some manufacturers use very little cranberry and obtain PACs from other cheaper sources such as grape seeds and peanut skin . But, of course, this isn’t the same stuff obtained from cranberries and the PACs are as effective.
So, even if a cranberry product contains the recommended amount of PACs on paper, it still may not do you any good, at least not the kind you’ll get from real cranberry. “In fact, many suppliers overestimate the actual PAC content because the numbers are obtained by using unreliable test methods,” says Lukawski. “The most reliable testing method is DMAC for measuring soluble PACs, and Butonal BCHL for measuring insoluble PACs. Only a few authentic suppliers use those,” Lukawski added.
What’s more: Adulterated cranberry products can also adversely affect your health, especially if you’re allergic to certain ingredients such as peanuts.
Why suppliers or manufacturers adulterate cranberry products
Herbal dietary supplements such as cranberry generally don’t undergo the kind of rigorous testing to which pharmaceutical drugs are subjected by the Food and Drug Administration . So, in essence, there’s a lack of product standardization . This encourages unscrupulous manufacturers to adulterate cranberry products.
And as in most other cases of adulteration, cranberry suppliers and manufacturers who adulterate their products do so to make more profit and compete against others. And let’s be honest, who doesn’t like cheap stuff? But here’s the deal: Quality cranberry costs money and it’s totally worth it. “After all, your health is an investment, not an expense!” Lukawski says. Based on efficacy, you can take two capsules per day containing 500 mg of organic Cran Naturelle cranberry or take 15 to 20 capsules per day of non-standardized cranberry supplements
How to identify quality cranberry products
Chemical tests that help to identify quality cranberry products are too expensive and pretty much inaccessible to the average consumer.
But here’s one place to start: product color . Ripe cranberries are crimson red. Brown may indicate over-processing. This isn’t fool proof, though, as some manufacturers have been reported to source their red pigment from cheaper sources such as red peanut, mulberry fruit and hibiscus calyx.
You may also want to empty the capsule and taste the powder. If it doesn’t have cranberry’s sour, mildly acidic flavor, then it’s not the real stuff. So, do yourself a favor by walking away. Return the cranberry product to the retailer for a refund.
Fruit d’Or is speaking out about adulterated cranberry products
To help protect consumers’ health, Fruit d’Or is outspoken about the adulterated cranberry products flooding the market. It is also transparent about getting its own cranberry ingredients, such as Cran Naturelle, reviewed by various independent experts and confirmed to be quality cranberry. “Fruit d’Or is the only company in the world offering controlled quality from farm to table and consistency from lot to lot. They’re leading the way with higher quality testing standards such as polyphenol