Rose hips have been known for their medicinal value long before vitamin C was discovered, but now we've learned new science on rose hips.
After a rose loses its petals, the roundish-shaped fruit that remains is called a rose hip. A clinical study of rose hip powder concluded that consumption alleviates osteoarthritis due to its anti-inflammatory and cartilage-protective properties. Studies also show that rose hips help reduce symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis as well. Regular consumption can increase mobility up to 25% while decreasing pain significantly. The anti-inflammatory effects can also be helpful to athletes and bodybuilders.Rose hips are a good source of antioxidants. In one study they removed the ascorbic acid (Vitamin C) from rose hip extract and found that the remaining product increased protection against oxidative stress. This study showed that it was not the vitamin C providing the antioxidant activity.A double blind study concluded that daily consumption of 40 grams of rose hip powder for only 6 weeks can significantly reduce cardiovascular risk in obese people by lowering systolic blood pressure and plasma cholesterol levels.There are numerous varieties of roses; some that yield larger pulpy hips and others that yield small ones without much pulp. Rose hips come in different colors as well.The vitamin C levels vary in rose hips. Laboratory tests of rose hips and products made from them have found a wide range of vitamin C content, ranging from 0.03 to 1.3%.In one study they found that the vitamin C content increased in the same species of rose as the altitude that the plant was grown in increased.Rose hips can be eaten raw if the person is very careful not to get one of the seeds in their mouth. The seeds are not poisonous but are surrounded by hair like fibers that can stick to your throat and be quite annoying and difficult to remove.The larger pulpy hips are the ones that I enjoy eating when they are ripe. The way I do it is by very carefully nibbling off the thin outer layer and then discarding the center part that contains the seeds. One can also cut open the hip and scoop out the seeds leaving the outer fruit for eating.The easiest way to consume rose hips is to buy rose hip powder and spoon some into a smoothie. I have been using rose hip powder in my smoothies for many years. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25371599 http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19818588 http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22829958 http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22166897 Ziegler SJ (1986). "Fast and Selective Assay of l-Ascorbic Acid in Rose Hips by RP-HPLC Coupled with Electrochemical and/or Spectrophotometric Detection". Planta Medica 52 (5): 383–7. doi:10.1055/s-2007-969192.PMID17345347. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4450003/ Read more about antioxidants!