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Best Cranberry Supplement: Choosing the Right One in 2024

Are you frequently bothered by recurrent urinary tract infections? You are not alone. It is estimated that 25-40% of women between the ages of 20 and 40 have had at least one urinary tract infection. While antibiotics are typically needed to treat the infection, those with recurrent infections often seek preventative measures.

Many individuals use cranberry supplements to help boost urinary tract health, but which product is the best for women? We have evaluated severals items and have developed our list of the top five best cranberry supplements on the market.

Best cranberry supplement: a shortlist

  1. HUM — best probiotic and cranberry supplement
  2. Nutricost — best overall organic cranberry supplement
  3. AZO — best cranberry supplement for urinary health
  4. Sports Research — best cranberry and vitamin supplement
  5. Nature Made — best cranberry supplement for women

How we compiled our list of the best cranberry supplements

The evaluation of supplements can be difficult, given the numerous different brands and lack of U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) regulation.

Therefore it is important to research each supplement to find cranberry tablets or capsules best suited for your needs. Luckily, we have gone through careful analysis and identified top supplements based on these factors:

Price-to-valueQualityProanthocyanidins (PAC) contentProduction methodAdditional ingredients
$12.49–26Use of independent lab testing and current Good Manufacturing Practices36 mg is considered an adequate dosage per dayOrganic vs. non-organicAddition of other active ingredients
  • Price-to-value. Identifying high-quality products that provide significant worth without breaking the bank.
  • Quality. Supplements subjected to third-party lab testing and manufactured in facilities certified to be compliant with current Good Manufacturing Practices (cGMP) were prioritized.
  • Proanthocyanidins (PAC) content. Studies show these comounds to be responsible for the potential effects of cranberry products on urinary health, making PACs an important component of cranberry supplements.
  • Production method. Using organic over non-organic sources of cranberries can limit exposure to pesticides and synthetic fertilizers.
  • Additional ingredients. Products containing additional components can provide additional benefits at the risk of an increased number of side effects.

Best cranberry supplement: an overview

Cranberries are bright-red berries that provide a tart treat packed with antioxidants. However, for many, cranberries are too tart or require sugar to make them more palatable. To experience the health benefits of the fruit, many turn to tablets or capsules containing dried, powdered cranberries that provide similar health benefits as the fresh variety.

With many different brands and formulations on the market, it can be difficult to select a high-quality product without having to pay a fortune. To aid in selection, we have provided our list of the top five cranberry supplements. However, before starting any supplement it is important to talk with your doctor to ensure it is safe given your current medications and health conditions.

1. HUM — best probiotic and cranberry supplement

HUM Private Party®

HUM manufactures its Private Party product to target urinary health and vaginal health with one capsule a day. The product contains 90 mg of cranberry extract (40% proanthocyanidins) and three lactobacillus strains known to promote a healthy vaginal microbiome.

Each HUM product undergoes testing during the manufacturing process and third-party validation of the final product. Testing ensures the high quality and purity of this product and the actual presence of the ingredients in the supplement.

Customers are impressed with the benefits of this product, not only on urinary health but also vaginal health. In addition, some have experienced digestive improvements while taking Private Party. However, not all individuals have experienced the same benefits with this product and there are criticisms of a bad aftertaste.

It can be purchased in a bottle, providing a 30-day supply for $26.

2. Nutricost — overall best organic cranberry supplement

Nutricost Cranberry Extract

Nutricost cranberry supplements are manufactured in the U.S. from globally sourced ingredients to contain 500 mg of organic cranberry extract in combination with 45 mg of vitamin C and 5 mg of vitamin E in each capsule.

To ensure purity and content, Nutricort utilizes quality testing and current cGMP to produce a high-quality product. This vegetarian-friendly product is also free from gluten and is non-GMO product.

Customers are impressed by the benefits provided by this supplement, as well as the potent strength of the extract. However, some customers have complained that the powder dries out and appears discolored.

Overall, this product is of high quality and backed with a 60-day money-back guarantee to ensure you are happy with the product. Also, a four-month (120 servings) supply is available for $13.46 with free shipping for Amazon Prime members.

3. AZO — best cranberry supplement for urinary health

AZO® Cranberry Gummies

Azo is one of the most recognizable manufacturers of cranberry supplements and is marketed as the most trusted brand. We reviewed the AZO Cranberry Gummies, which contain 500 mg of a super-concentrated whole cranberry fruit powder, Pacran®.

While the website does not specifically address the manufacturing process or third-party testing, the AZO brand is well known for producing high-quality products backed by scientific research.

Customers are impressed with AZO's effects on their urinary health and the ability to receive regularly shipped products to their homes for free using the subscribe and save program. Some users have expressed displeasure with the taste and firmness of the gummies.

Each bottle contains a 36-day supply and costs $12.49, with an additional 10% savings when enrolled in the subscription plan.

4. Sports Research — best cranberry and vitamin supplement

Sports Research Cranberry Fruit Complex

Sports Research, founded in California, manufactures its Cranberry Fruit Complex to contain 500 mg of Pacran®, in addition to 100 mg of vitamin C and 4 mg of vitamin E.

Sports Research uses manufacturing facilities compliant with current cGMP and undergoes third-party testing to ensure its content and purity. Additionally, this product has been tested and approved as a non-GMO supplement that is also gluten-free.

Customers appreciate the high-quality nature of this product and the use of organic extra virgin olive oil as the vehicle for the cranberry extract. However, the softgel capsules have been noted to stick together and in some instances melt into a single block of pills.

When taken as recommended, each bottle provides a 45-day supply and is available for $18.86, which includes free shipping for Amazon Prime members. Additional savings are available with the Prime Subscribe and Save Program.

5. Nature Made — best cranberry supplement for women

With over 50 years of experience, Nature Made is a manufacturer known for producing quality supplements and vitamins. Each serving of Nature Made's cranberry supplement contains 500 mg of cranberry extract and 90 mg of vitamin C.

Nature Made manufactures most of its products in the U.S. using strict protocols and is known for producing high-quality supplements and vitamins. The website does not provide information regarding third-party testing, but other products by Nature Made are USP-certified for their high quality.

Customers like this product for its high quality and the addition of vitamin C to help boost the antioxidant potential of the supplement. However, users do not like the strong smell associated with the capsules or the bad taste they can leave in the mouth.

Nature Made offers this product in a bottle containing a 60-day supply. The supplement is available on Amazon for $20.99, including shipping for Amazon Prime members.

Comparing the best cranberry supplements

BrandPricePrice per ServingServing sizeDosage of cranberry extractAdditional ingredients
HUM$26$0.871 capsule90 mg3 strains of Lactobacillus
Nutricost$13.46$0.111 capsule500 mgVitamins C and E
AZO$12.49$0.352 gummies500 mgnone
Sport Research$18.86$0.422 softgels500 mgVitamins C and E
Nature Made$20.99$0.351 capsule500 mgVitamin C

Why use cranberry supplements?

While there are conflicting opinions on the health benefits of cranberries, there have been some encouraging studies linking cranberries to certain well-being improvements.

May boost urinary tract health

Cranberry consumption for urinary tract infections (UTI) is one of the most commonly suggested health benefits. While there are conflicting opinions on the effectiveness of the fruit, a meta-analysis has shown cranberries may be useful in lowering the occurrence of UTIs.

It is important to understand that cranberries do not treat infections. However, the proanthocyanidin contained within the cranberries may help reduce the attachment of bacteria to the urinary tract, potentially resulting in fewer urinary tract infections. To determine if cranberries are right for you, please discuss them with your healthcare provider.

May protect against oxidative stress

Chronic exposure to oxidative stress in the body is attributed to premature aging and the occurrence of chronic diseases. Ingesting powerful antioxidants may help boost the body's natural defenses against oxidative stress.

Cranberries are known to contain high levels of antioxidants that ideally should maintain their effectiveness during the manufacturing process into supplements.

Interestingly, dried, powdered cranberry extract used in supplements has been shown to contain higher levels of antioxidants than jellied and sauced cranberries. In small clinical trials, cranberry supplements have demonstrated the ability to potentially reduce oxidative stresses within the body.

May have benefits on cholesterol

Cranberry supplementation has been shown to potentially have beneficial effects on cholesterol levels, in particular high-density lipoproteins (HDL). However, there is a limit to the benefits of cranberry supplements in increasing these levels and studies have been conflicting. Therefore, further research is needed to confirm the relationship between cranberry supplements and HDL levels.

If you are considering adding a cranberry supplement to your overall diet for the purposes of heart health, it is recommended that you talk to your healthcare provider to determine if it is safe, especially if you're taking any medications.

May reduce blood glucose levels

Studies have evaluated the use of cranberry supplements for the purpose of reducing blood sugar levels in patients with Type II diabetes. In a small study involving 58 male patients, a glass of cranberry juice every day for 12 weeks was shown to have a positive impact on blood glucose levels in these patients.

Additional studies still need to be conducted to see if this effect can be transferred to cranberry supplements or if the effects are specific to the intake of the juice.

Suppose you are currently taking medications to treat diabetes - in that case, it is important to have a discussion with your healthcare provider before using cranberry supplements or juice to ensure your blood sugar levels do not drop too low.

Types of cranberry supplements

For many, cranberries' taste profile is off-putting, making it difficult to add them to the diet. Therefore, patients have turned to supplements to help increase their cranberry intake and obtain health benefits. Here, we discuss the options for cranberry supplementation and the benefits and disadvantages of each type.

  • Capsules and tablets are available for those who prefer pre-measured dosages that are convenient to take on the go. However, these may not be a good option for those with difficulty swallowing pills.
  • Gummies provide many of the benefits of capsules in terms of pre-measured dosages and convenience, with the added benefit of being better for those with difficulty swallowing pills. However, the flavor of the gummies may be a disadvantage for some.
  • Liquid extract is another option available for those with difficulty swallowing pills, but the flavor profile of these extracts may not be palatable and require dexterity for proper dosing.

Key ingredients to look for in cranberry supplements

Urinary health benefits seem to be due to the dose of proanthocyanidins, especially type A, contained within the supplement. This compound is thought to inhibit bacterial binding within the urinary tract, allowing the body to flush them out during urination. Many supplements will standardize the dose based on proanthocyanidin content.

It is recommended one obtain at least 36 milligrams per serving. However, some researchers state that the optimal dose is still in discussion.

Many other compounds are present in cranberries that provide antioxidant properties. These compounds include phenolic acids, anthocyanins, flavones, flavonoids, and organic acids. The content of phenolic compounds depends on agricultural practices, geographic locations, and harvest time. Thus manufacturers need to obtain quality cranberries from trusted sources.

How to use cranberry supplements effectively

The effectiveness of cranberry supplements depends on the consistency in which the supplements are used. Therefore, selecting an easy-to-remember time that can be incorporated into your routine is best for boosting the effectiveness of cranberry supplements.

Cranberry supplements can be taken along with a meal or on an empty stomach with a full glass of water.

Is it ok to take cranberry pills every day? Long-term studies have not been conducted to determine the safety of daily usage for longer than 6 months. Taking cranberry supplements using dosages of 250 to 1350 mg daily for up to six months is generally considered safe.

Possible side effects and considerations of cranberry supplements

Main side effects include diarrhea and upset stomach, especially with high doses. Rarely, some people may experience severe allergic reactions to cranberries.

Because UTIs are common during pregnancy, women often ask, can you take cranberry pills while pregnant? While a Norwegian study showed no increased risk of adverse effects during pregnancy, it is advised to talk to your doctor before using cranberry supplements, as there is still no general consensus on whether it is safe to take them during pregnancy or when breastfeeding.

Patients with a history of kidney stones should avoid cranberry supplements - even though the evidence is inconsistent, it's better to stay on the safe side. In addition, cranberry supplements may potentially interact with blood thinners such as warfarin and should be discussed with your doctor before starting.

Best cranberry supplement – conclusion

Cranberries are known to provide a powerful antioxidant punch, but many do not find their tartness palatable, at least on a daily basis.

When selecting a cranberry supplement, confirm the dosage of proanthocyanidins provided per serving. This compound may help boost urinary health when taken at 36 mg daily.

While cranberry supplement benefits still require additional studies to confirm their health benefits, these supplements may be worth trying if deemed safe by your healthcare provider.

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