D-mannose is a glyconutrient. Glyconutrients are a type of sugar, which although similar to glucose behave quite differently in the body. Glyconutrients form part of the sugary coating on every cell in your body, and this coating is vital for ensuring proper cellular function.
D-mannose is found naturally in some fruit, including peaches, cranberries and apples. It plays an important role in the immune system, stimulating the production of cytokines – the immune system signallers which make you feel feverish and ill, but in doing so stimulate the immune system to fight whatever the problem is.
This simple sugar is of great interest when it comes to the prevention and treatment of urinary infections. D-mannose is the main active ingredient in cranberry juice, often drunk for urinary health, but minus the harmful sugar in that juice. D-mannose prevents bacteria from adhering to the walls of the urinary tract, thus keeping it in better health.
D-mannose is also thought to be a useful treatment for carbohydrate-deficient glycoprotein disorder, and it may perhaps also have potential for the treatment of depression, since cytokines and inflammation also play a role in some mood disorders.