Archive for the ‘Berries’ Category

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Nutrient in Grapes and Berries Lower Heart Disease and Cancer Risks

May 18, 2011
Potent C3G Nutrients Helps Prevent Cancer and Heart Disease

Potent C3G Nutrients Helps Prevent Cancer and Heart Disease

The reddish and purple pigments that give many fruits, vegetables and berries their appealing color continue to shine as super functional nutrients that help prevent disease. The journal Molecular Cancer found that a special anthocyanin found in the skins of deeply colored vegetables and berries known as Cyanidin-3-glucoside (C3G) is a powerful antioxidant that can sacrifice itself to blunt the effect of health-damaging free radicals.

Grapes, blueberries and black currants provide a potent source of C3G anthocyanins. Extensive scientific research is uncovering the specific mechanism that this nutrient exerts on our genes as a potent antioxidant and anti-inflammatory agent. C3G is shown to protect against many deadly age-related conditions including cancer, heart disease and metabolic syndrome.

C3G From Grapes Protects DNA Genetic Strands to Prevent Cancer

C3G Protects DNA Strands to Avert Cancer

C3G Protects DNA Strands to Avert Cancer

As improved techniques evolve that are capable of revealing the efficacy of specific compounds at the molecular and genetic level, C3G is beginning to shine as a potent influence on DNA strands that effect the production of free radicals. Researchers have found that this natural nutrient is able to prevent the formation of new free radicals and can neutralize the damaging effect of those already formed.

A high intake of fruits and vegetables is associated with a reduced incidence of cancer, largely due to polyphenols in the anthocyanin family including C3G. The result of a study published in Nutrition and Cancer provides insight into the powerful protective mechanism exhibited by anthocyanins toward developing cancer cells. C3G was shown to inhibit the action of special oncogenes (genes that lead to cancer formation), known to be the first stage in tumor genesis.

Further research identifies the link between C3G and suppression of the master inflammatory switch called NF-kB. Inflammation is a leading cause for cancer initiation and this functional compound has been shown to sacrifice itself as it inhibits the effect of NF-kB to prevent the formation of many tumor types.

C3G From Berries Fights Free Radicals to Avert Heart Disease

C3G Found in Red Grapes Fights Free Radicals to Prevent Heart Disease

C3G Found in Red Grapes Fights Free Radicals to Prevent Heart Disease

C3G is also an important player in preventing heart disease and the events that lead to a potentially fatal heart attack. Nitrogen-based free radicals are known to attack the inner endothelial lining of the coronary arteries, causing the surface to become resistant to the continual demands necessary to react quickly to changes in blood pressure. C3G neutralizes the effect of these damaging free radicals and helps to restore the normal elastic integrity of the delicate arteries that supply blood to the heart.

Results from the European EPIC study show that eating at least 8 servings of fresh fruits and vegetables each day can lower the risk of all-cause mortality by 22%. Anthocyanins such as C3G are one example of essential nutritional compounds found in natural foods that have been identified with a specific action shown to lower the risk of chronic disease. Health conscious individuals will want to ensure they eat at least 10 daily servings of vegetables and fruits (especially berries highly concentrated in C3G) to ward off many of the common diseases associated with aging.

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Blueberries Lower Heart Disease and Hypertension Risk

March 16, 2011

(Article first published as A Handful of Berries Each Day Lowers Blood Pressure and Risk of Heart Disease on Technorati.)

Anthocyanins in Berries Help Lower Blood Pressure

Anthocyanins in Berries Help Lower Blood Pressure

Bioactive compounds found in the full spectrum of berries, and especially blueberries are shown to lower blood pressure and prevent hypertension, according to a study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. The results provide fresh proof that this great tasting source of beneficial phytonutrients can lower the risk associated with a heart attack.

“Our findings are exciting and suggest that an achievable dietary intake of anthocyanins may contribute to the prevention of hypertension,” said lead author Professor Aedin Cassidy of the Department of Nutrition at the University of East Anglia’s Medical School. Approximately one-quarter of all adults worldwide and as many as one in three Americans suffer from hypertension, a leading cause of heart disease and death from a heart attack.

Anthocyanins in Berries Reduce Risk of Hypertension

Experts Recommend Blueberries to Lower Heart Disease Risk

Experts Recommend Blueberries to Lower Heart Disease Risk

The team of scientists followed nearly 200,000 men and women over a period of 14 years and assessed their intake of flavonoids from a variety of natural foods including apples, orange juice, blueberries, red wine, and strawberries. They found that the group consuming the highest amount of anthocyanins (found mainly in blueberries and strawberries in the US) were 8% less likely to develop hypertension over the period of the study.

A more in-depth analysis showed that consumption of blueberries in particular conveyed the highest degree of protection against developing high blood pressure with a 10% lower incidence for those eating the fruit once a week. Dr. Cassidy noted “Our findings are exciting and suggest that an achievable dietary intake of anthocyanins may contribute to the prevention of hypertension”. Hypertension is a leading risk factor for heart attack, and this finding could translate to a significant reduction in the number of people suffering a cardiovascular event.

A Daily Dose of Berries Can Prevent Heart Disease, Stroke and Dementia

Berries Also Lower Risk of Stroke, Diabetes and Dementia

Berries Also Lower Risk of Stroke, Diabetes and Dementia

Nutrition researchers will now begin to identify the different sources of anthocyanins as well as the ideal dose necessary to prevent hypertension. Most berry varieties are packed with flavonoids and anthocyanins that have been shown to lower the risk of chronic illness from heart disease, stroke, diabetes and premature brain aging.

Extensive scientific studies now exist showing how berry consumption, and especially blueberries help to prevent diseases of the brain that result in cognitive decline and dementia. The special compounds that give berries their deep purple and reddish colors are able to cross into the brain where they exert a powerful effect to thwart functional decline.

We now have evidence that berry consumption can prevent hypertension and lower heart attack risk. Until exact standards are developed, nutrition experts advise eating one-half to a full cup of berries several times a week to protect the heart and the brain.

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Berries Help to Prevent Colon Cancer

February 19, 2011

(Article first published as Choose Raspberries and Purple Fruits to Ward off Cancer on Technorati.)

Berries Contain Powerful Anitoxidant Compounds Known as Anthocyanins

Berries Contain Powerful Antioxidant Compounds Known as Anthocyanins

Colon cancer is the third leading cause of cancer deaths. This devastating disease is on the rise as our typical diet of processed foods continues to kill. A diet void of essential nutrients is the driving force behind this largely preventable disease.

Researchers continue to uncover the critical link between a diet packed with natural plant based phytonutrients and cancer prevention. You can add these important foods to your dietary arsenal and dramatically lower your risk of disease.

Study Shows a 45% Reduction in Colon Cancer Risk

Berries Reduce Colon Cancer Risk by 45%

Berries Reduce Colon Cancer Risk by 45%

Research conducted at the University of Illinois and published in the journal Cancer Prevention Research show that a diet supplemented with black raspberries lowered the incidence of colorectal cancer by 45%. The study authors conclude that the high polyphenol content of the raspberries are likely to influence digestive gene targets and may be of benefit to other digestive cancer lines as well.

Black Raspberries Shown to Reverse Gene Damage

Berry Compounds Prevent Damage to DNA Strands

Berry Compounds Prevent Damage to DNA Strands

A second study published in Cancer Research demonstrated that there are over 2000 genes that are responsible for regulating digestive health. These genetic targets are down regulated with a diet of processed foods, hydrogenated fats and sugar to favor the initiation and development of cancer. Supplementing with a concentration of freeze-dried black raspberries was shown to return 462 of those genes to a normal state.

The study author concluded, “We have clearly shown that berries, which contain a variety of anticancer compounds, have a genome-wide effect on the expression of genes involved in cancer development”. Researchers have shown that the active compound found in black raspberries inhibits tumor development by suppressing the activity of a protein needed for the disease to progress. Further, black raspberries reduce levels of dangerous systemic inflammation that lower tumor formation by 50%.

Anthocyanins are Powerful Antioxidants

Black raspberries aren`t the only member of the berry family known to prevent disease. Research has concentrated on the antioxidant capacity of berries and how anthocyanins can reduce the risk from diseases ranging from diabetes and dementia to stroke and heart disease. Information published in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry explains that berry compounds have a significant biological activity that has been shown to be a powerful inhibitor of cancers of the digestive tract.

The researchers tested the chemo-protective properties of anthocyanin-rich extracts (ARE`s) to determine which exhibited the highest antioxidant power. They found that purple corn, chokeberry, bilberry, purple carrot and grapes were at the top of the list. Anthocyanins impart the deep purple color to these foods that make them such powerful agents against cancer.

Members of the berry family and foods rich in anthocyanins have been consumed by our ancestors for generations. These potent compounds provide us with an important tool to prevent many diseases that result from our poor western diet. Be certain your diet includes a source of anthocyanins to dramatically lower your risk of digestive cancers.