Blueberry as functional food and dietary supplement: The natural way to ensure holistic health
Blueberry (Vaccinium sp.), a fruit crop belonging to family Ericaceae is regarded a repository of functional phytochemicals. Its components, phenolic acids (caffeic, chlorogenic, ferulic, p-coumaric, and cinnamic acids) and flavonoids (anthocyanidins) have been credited to confer manifold healthy properties. The berries have been evidenced to impart relief from obesity, diabetes, retinal injury, heart, liver, stomach and kidney inflammation, tumours, microbial infection, cognitive decline and bone loss. Consumer interest in these berries is reflected in the slew of fortified-foods. The nutraceutical potentials of these nutrient powerhouses warrant deeper investigation for their optimal exploitation. This literature review elucidates the probable modes of biological actions, current status and future scopes of blueberry for prcessed food and dietary supplement development. Relevant information has been mined from PUBMED, SCOPUS and Google scholar database and assembled into an insightful account.