Edible berries: bioactive components and their effect on human health

Nutrition. 2014 Feb;30(2):134-44. doi: 10.1016/j.nut.2013.04.007. Epub 2013 Sep 4.


The importance of food consumption in relation to human health has increased consumer attention in nutraceutical components and foods, especially fruits and vegetables. Berries are a rich source of a wide variety of non-nutritive, nutritive, and bioactive compounds such as flavonoids, phenolics, anthocyanins, phenolic acids, stilbenes, and tannins, as well as nutritive compounds such as sugars, essential oils, carotenoids, vitamins, and minerals. Bioactive compounds from berries have potent antioxidant, anticancer, antimutagenic, antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory, and antineurodegenerative properties, both in vitro and in vivo. The following is a comprehensive and critical review on nutritional and non-nutritional bioactive compounds of berries including their absorption, metabolism, and biological activity in relation to their potential effect on human health.

Keywords: Blackberries; Blueberries; Human health; Phytochemicals; Raspberries; Strawberries.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Anti-Infective Agents / pharmacology
  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents / pharmacology
  • Antimutagenic Agents / pharmacology
  • Antineoplastic Agents / pharmacology
  • Antioxidants / pharmacology
  • Carotenoids / analysis
  • Flavonoids / analysis*
  • Fruit / chemistry*
  • Health Promotion*
  • Humans
  • Oils, Volatile / analysis
  • Phenols / analysis*
  • Stilbenes / analysis
  • Trace Elements / analysis
  • Vitamins / analysis
  • Volatile Organic Compounds / administration & dosage
  • Volatile Organic Compounds / analysis


  • Anti-Infective Agents
  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents
  • Antimutagenic Agents
  • Antineoplastic Agents
  • Antioxidants
  • Flavonoids
  • Oils, Volatile
  • Phenols
  • Stilbenes
  • Trace Elements
  • Vitamins
  • Volatile Organic Compounds
  • Carotenoids