What Is Bilberry Extract?
Bilberry extract is a supplement derived from the fruit of the bilberry plant (Vaccinium myrtillus). Bilberries are small, dark blue berries that resemble blueberries and are native to Europe, North America, and some parts of Asia. The extract is typically made by drying and crushing the bilberry fruit, then extracting its beneficial compounds using solvents like water or alcohol.
Bilberry extract is valued for its potential health benefits owing to its high concentration of antioxidants, specifically anthocyanins. Anthocyanins are a type of flavonoid pigment that gives bilberries their deep blue color and provides numerous health-promoting properties. These compounds have been studied for their potential effects on eye health, cardiovascular health, cognitive function, and overall antioxidant and anti-inflammatory activities.
Regarding eye health, bilberry extract has traditionally been used to support vision and alleviate eye fatigue. It is believed to enhance night vision, improve blood circulation in the eyes, and protect the retina from oxidative stress. Some studies suggest that bilberry extract may benefit conditions like cataracts, glaucoma, and macular degeneration.
Bilberry extract is also known for its potential cardiovascular benefits. It may help improve blood circulation, strengthen blood vessels, and reduce the risk of cardiovascular diseases. Additionally, bilberry extract’s antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties may contribute to its positive effects on heart health.
Moreover, bilberry extract is often associated with cognitive enhancement. It is thought to improve brain function, memory, and learning ability. The antioxidants in bilberries may help protect brain cells from oxidative damage and improve blood flow to the brain, positively affecting cognitive performance.
What Is The Active Ingredient In Bilberry Extract?
The active ingredients in bilberry extract are a group of flavonoid compounds called anthocyanins. Anthocyanins are responsible for the deep blue color of bilberries and are known for their potent antioxidant properties. These compounds are believed to be the primary contributors to the potential health benefits associated with bilberry extract.
Different anthocyanins are present in varying amounts in bilberry extract, but some of the prominent ones include:
It is the most abundant anthocyanin in bilberries and is responsible for its deep blue color. It is known for its potent antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties.
Delphinidin, an anthocyanin in bilberries, has been linked to cardiovascular health and protection against oxidative stress.
Malvidin is another prominent anthocyanin in bilberries known for its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects. It has been studied for its potential protective effects on eye health.
The CAS number, molecular formula, and molecular weight of Bilberry Extract can vary depending on the specific composition and extraction method used. Since Bilberry Extract is a natural product derived from the bilberry fruit, it is not a single compound with a fixed chemical composition. Instead, it is a complex mixture of various bioactive compounds, including anthocyanins, flavonoids, and other phytochemicals.
Cyanidin-3-glucoside: 449.39 g/mol
Delphinidin: 303.24 g/mol
Common Bilberry Powder Extract Specifications
Depending on the manufacturing process and intended use, bilberry powder extract is commonly available in various purities. Here are 2 common specifications of bilberry powder extract.
- Bilberry Powder Extract 95%
- Bilberry Powder Extract 98%
According to different grades, here are some other possible purities of bilberry extract powder as below.
- Standard Grade: This is the most common purity level, typically 95% to 98%. It indicates that the extract primarily comprises the desired active compounds, such as anthocyanins, while containing a small percentage of other constituents.
- High Purity Grade refers to a higher purity level, usually above 98%. High-purity bilberry powder extract is often obtained through more rigorous purification processes, resulting in a higher concentration of the desired active compounds and reduced impurities.
- Pharmaceutical Grade: Bilberry powder extract of pharmaceutical grade undergoes rigorous quality control measures to achieve maximum purity. It typically has a 99% or higher purity level, making it suitable for pharmaceutical applications, research, or specialized formulations.
|Fine powder with a dark purple color
|Typically standardized to contain 25% anthocyanins
|≥ 98% (free from contaminants and impurities)
|Typically 80-100 mesh
|MOQ (minimum order quantity)
|Available, such as capsules, tablets, pills, etc.
What Is The Best Natural Source Of Bilberry Powder?
The best natural source of bilberry powder is the bilberry fruit itself (Vaccinium myrtillus). Bilberry is a small, dark blue berry that grows in temperate regions, particularly in Europe, North America, and some parts of Asia. The fruit of the bilberry plant is rich in beneficial compounds, including anthocyanins, which are responsible for its potential health benefits.
The fruit is typically dried and then processed into a fine powder to obtain bilberry powder. This powder retains the natural compounds found in the fruit, making it a concentrated source of the beneficial components of bilberries.
What are the benefits of Bilberry Extract?
Bilberry extract has several potential health benefits, although more research is needed to understand its effects fully. Here are some of the commonly suggested benefits of bilberry extract:
- Eye Health: Bilberry extract is often touted for its potential benefits on eye health. It may help improve night vision, alleviate eye fatigue, and enhance overall visual function. The antioxidants in bilberry extract, particularly anthocyanins, are believed to protect the retina from oxidative stress and support blood circulation in the eyes. Bilberry extract has been traditionally used for conditions like cataracts, glaucoma, and age-related macular degeneration.
- Antioxidant and Anti-inflammatory Effects: Bilberry extract contains high levels of antioxidants such as anthocyanins and flavonoids. These compounds aid in reducing oxidative stress and counteracting harmful free radicals within the body. Bilberry extract may assist in maintaining cellular health and preventing chronic diseases by minimizing oxidative damage. Additionally, it possesses anti-inflammatory properties that may help reduce inflammation.
- Cardiovascular Health: The antioxidants in bilberry extract have been studied for their potential cardiovascular benefits. They may help improve blood circulation, strengthen blood vessels, and reduce the risk of cardiovascular diseases. Bilberry extract may also help regulate blood pressure and inhibit the oxidation of LDL cholesterol, thereby contributing to heart health.
- Cognitive Function: Some research suggests that bilberry extract may support cognitive function and memory. The antioxidants in bilberries may help protect brain cells from oxidative damage, enhance blood flow to the brain, and improve overall brain health.
- Anti-Diabetic Effects: Bilberry extract may have potential benefits for individuals with diabetes. Research has investigated its capacity to enhance insulin sensitivity, regulate blood glucose levels, and mitigate diabetic complications.
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What Is Bilberry Extract Manufacturing Process?
The manufacturing process for bilberry extract involves several steps. Bilberry extract is derived from the fruits of the bilberry plant (Vaccinium myrtillus). Here is a general overview of the manufacturing process.
Bilberry extract is often associated with potential benefits for eye health, including improved night vision, reduced eye fatigue, and protection against certain eye conditions.
Lutein powder and Bilberry extract is beneficial for eye health but offers different advantages.
Lutein is known explicitly for supporting macular health, while bilberry extract is associated with overall eye health and visual function. The choice between them depends on individual needs and preferences.
Bilberry extract contains various vitamins but in relatively small amounts. The most notable vitamins include vitamins C, A (in beta-carotene), and E.
Bilberry has a low mineral content. The substance contains small quantities of minerals, including manganese, potassium, magnesium, and calcium.
Bilberry itself is not a significant source of zinc. Zinc is generally found in higher quantities in other food sources like meat, shellfish, legumes, and seeds.
The FDA does not typically approve dietary supplements like bilberry extract. However, the FDA regulates the production and labeling of nutritional supplements to ensure their safety and accurate representation of ingredients. Choosing products from reputable manufacturers that adhere to good manufacturing practices (GMP) and meet quality standards is essential.