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Diet & Nutrition Foods > Maqui Berry

Another poor man’s food promoted as a cure all

Maqui or Chilean Wineberry is a small evergreen tree that grows 4–5 m in height in the wilderness of the Chilean Andes and adjacent regions of southern Argentina, it’s botanical name is Aristotelia chilensis, a species of the Elaeocarpaceae family. Maqui is sparsely cultivated and most maqui on the market is harvested by the rural poor who are paid a token amount for their labour.

Maqui berries are harvested in late summer; April/May and they are traditionally used as a supplement to the native diet where they were be eaten raw or dried, or processed into jam. The berries that reach the cities are sold as juice, an astringent or as an ingredient in processed foods or beverages.

Since their discovery by marketing companies, they have been made into dietary supplements, mainly due to interest for colour and anthocyanin content although anthocyanin is very low compared to other berries. There is some evidence that maqui extract may be used to treat diarrhoea, inflammation and fever.


References:
Wikipedia

 



 

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