Archive for the ‘Blueberries’ Category

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Blueberries, Cocoa and Resveratrol Help Weight Loss

August 22, 2011
Natural Compounds From Fruits and Chocolate Assist Weight Loss Efforts

Natural Compounds From Fruits and Chocolate Assist Weight Loss Efforts

A wealth of new scientific evidence shines a critical light on the importance of natural foods and nutritional compounds in the fight against overweight, obesity and weight maintenance. Virtually all alternative health experts agree the current epidemic of weight control issues plaguing western society are the result of excess consumption of highly processed convenience foods that have replaced vegetables, fruits, nuts and seeds in the diet.

Three independent studies conclude that blueberries, resveratrol from red grapes and cocoa flavanols exert a potent effect on fat cell formation that can aid in weight loss and management goals when included as part of your daily diet.

Blueberries Inhibit the Formation of New Baby Fat Cells

Blueberries Inhibit Formation of New Fat Cells for Storage

Blueberries Inhibit Formation of New Fat Cells for Storage

Blueberries have been well documented for their cognitive and cardio-protective benefits, due in large part to the potent complex of anthocyanins that give the berry its deep blue color. Researchers reporting the results of a study to the Experimental Biology 2011 conference have found that blueberries may hold the key to resolving one of the largest threats to human health this century: overweight and obesity.

Scientists determined that extracts of the berry compound inhibited the formation of new baby fat cells (adipocytes) in a dose-dependent manner. Less adipocytes means there are fewer `containers` to store triglycerides from the blood, and ultimately a powerful mechanism to lower or help maintain body weight. Not only did blueberry extract supplementation reduce the number of adipocytes up to 73 percent, but the compound was also found to assist in the breakdown of lipids and fats for removal from the body.

Cocoa Polyphenols Slow the Breakdown of Carbohydrates to Fuel Weight Loss

Cocoa From Dark Chocolate Cuts Carbohydrate Brreakdown to Help Weight Maintenance

Cocoa From Dark Chocolate Cuts Carbohydrate Brreakdown to Help Weight Maintenance

Polyphenols from the cocoa plant have been shown to promote cardiovascular, skin and brain health in recent studies. Research published in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry provide evidence that extracts of the cacao bean, particularly the flavanol epicatechin is a potent inhibitor of enzymes that break down carbohydrates during digestion.

Study authors determined the compound exerted an effect in a dose-dependent fashion, noting “the more consumed, the greater the effect.” They were also careful to conclude that chocolate and cocoa are two very different terms with the distinction that cocoa is the non-fat component of cocoa liquor, and the carbohydrate-inhibiting effect is not seen when sugar-infused milk chocolate sources are used. A minimum cocoa content of 55% is necessary for health and weight management concerns.

Resveratrol, the bioactive compound found most commonly in the skins of red grapes is shown to reduce body fat formation by preventing the formation of fat tissue in a study published in the journal Nutrition and Metabolism. The compound is known to positively affect cognitive functions and extend natural lifespan by regulating the longevity gene SIRT1. Researchers explain that ingesting resveratrol at supplemental doses (50 mg per day) for a period of six weeks caused a significant reduction in the activity of enzymes linked to fat production in the body.

Effective weight loss and management requires a combination of lifestyle and dietary modifications. Natural foods and dietary nutrients such as blueberries, resveratrol and cocoa compounds provide a safe and powerful mechanism to achieve long-term weight reduction goals.

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Blueberry Extract Assists Weight Loss and Halts Atherosclerosis

August 1, 2011
Blueberries are Packed with Health Promoting Polyphenols

Blueberries are Packed with Health Promoting Polyphenols

Multiple nutritional studies have demonstrated that blueberries exert a powerful cardio-protective effect due to the high concentration of polyphenols found in the berry. Researchers from the Texas Woman`s University examined the role this amazing fruit plays in the initial development of fat cells that could have a significant impact on weight reduction efforts and obesity. The result of a study presented to the American Society for Nutrition found that blueberries inhibit the creation of new fat cells by altering lipid metabolism. A daily dose of fresh blueberries may hold the key to natural weight reduction.

Researchers at TWU set out to evaluate whether blueberries play a role in the development and differentiation of new baby fat cells or adipocytes that are the primary vehicle for fat storage in the body. In the past, studies have shown powerful natural polyphenols found in plants to inhibit the formation of fat cells and induce lipolysis, which is the breakdown of fats from cellular storage.

Blueberry Extract is Shown to Inhibit Baby Fat Cell Formation

Blueberries Help Prevent Baby Fat Cell Development

Blueberries Help Prevent Baby Fat Cell Development

The study used different concentrations of a wild blueberry extract performed on tissue cultures to determine the effect on fat cell initiation. The blueberry polyphenols showed a dose-dependent suppression of fat cell differentiation. Fat cells exposed to the highest polyphenol concentration showed a 73% decrease in lipid breakdown. Cells exposed to the lowest blueberry concentration exhibited a 27% decrease in lipids.

The lead study author, Shiwani Moghe, MS determined that blueberry polyphenols can inhibit a critical path leading to obesity at the molecular level and may play a significant role in blocking the development of new fat cells. The berry may also play a part in releasing fat from adipocytes that will help millions with the desire to lose weight. She noted “This is a burgeoning area of research. Determining the best dose for humans will be important. The promise is there for blueberries to help reduce adipose tissue from forming in the body.”

Blueberries Prevent Deadly Arterial Plaque and Atherosclerosis

Blueberry Extract Prevents Arterial Plaque Formation and Atherosclerosis

Blueberry Extract Prevents Arterial Plaque Formation and Atherosclerosis

Polyphenols from blueberries have been shown to be effective in the fight against arterial hardening or atherosclerosis. Researchers writing in the Journal of Nutrition found that regular blueberry consumption can help prevent harmful plaques and lesions from increasing in size in coronary arteries. A diet containing blueberries for 20 weeks was shown to reduce arterial plaque lesions from 39 to 58 percent, dramatically lowering risk for a deadly heart attack.

Blueberries have been a natural part of the human diet for countless generations and provide a tasty source of plant polyphenols that prevent coronary artery disease and can assist with weight loss efforts. Include four to eight ounces of fresh blueberries to your diet each day or take an organically produced concentrated extract supplement to naturally improve health and prevent fat cell development.

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Natural Nutrients Dramatically Lower Cancer Risk

April 13, 2011
Phytonutrients in Fruits and Vegetables Fight Cancer

Phytonutrients in Fruits and Vegetables Fight Cancer

Natural compounds commonly found in many fruits and vegetables are among the most powerful agents we have in our dietary arsenal to combat many forms of cancer. Flavonoids and proanthocyanidins have evolved as a protective mechanism for a variety of different plants and play a critical role in preventing disease in humans.

Our body uses these powerhouse nutrients to lower inflammation, reduce blood pressure and fight the aging effect of free radicals. New research shines a bright light on the cancer fighting capacity of flavonoids you need in your diet to provide optimal disease protection.

Study Finds Significant Risk Reduction for Many Cancer Lines

Natural Diet Lowers Colon Cancer Incidence by a Third

Natural Diet Lowers Colon Cancer Incidence by a Third

The results of a study published in the journal Nutrition and Cancer conducted in Italy over the past 20 years found that a high flavonoid diet played a key role in cancer prevention. Study participants with the highest intake of flavonoids and proanthocyanidins demonstrated a 44% lower risk of oral cancer and a 40% reduced occurrence of laryngeal cancer. Incidence of colon cancer was lowered by a third and reductions in breast, ovarian and kidney cancers were noted as well.

The study authors attributed the findings to the powerful antioxidant, anti-mutagenic and anti-proliferative properties of the dietary compounds commonly consumed by the participants in the study They conclude “The findings from this large network of Italian case-control studies have provided support for an apparent protective role of flavanones on upper aerodigestive tract cancers; flavonols, anthocyanidins, and proanthocyanidins on colorectal cancer; flavonols and flavones on breast cancer; isoflavones on ovarian cancer; and flavonols on renal cancer.”

Including Flavonoids in Your Diet to Prevent Cancer

Berries are Packed with Anthocyanins That Boost the Immune Response

Berries are Packed with Anthocyanins That Boost the Immune Response

Health conscious individuals will want to take advantage of these essential nutrients to achieve optimal disease protection. Include some of these flavorful options in your diet every day to lower your risk of many deadly cancer lines.

Black, Green and White Tea: All members of the tea family are packed with a special group of flavonoids known as flavonols (catechin, epicatechin, epigallocatechin, epicatechin gallate). Research has shown that these powerful flavonoids work directly on replicating DNA sequences to prevent mutations that lead to cancer initiation. Drink 2 to 4 cups of fresh brewed tea daily.

Garlic, Leeks and Onions: Quercetin is the key flavonoid in this family of vegetables. Known for its ability to spark the immune system into action, quercetin is rapidly taking its place at the top of the antioxidant pyramid. Some people have trouble eating garlic and onions due to the sharp taste so supplementing may be a good option.

Blueberries, Acai Berries and Grapes: Humans have been eating berries and grapes since early in our history. The flavonoids in these foods have been shown to help our immune system attack and destroy rogue cancer cells before they have a chance develop and become malignant. Enjoy 1 to 2 servings of these super foods for maximum cancer protection.

Diet is our most powerful agent in the fight against many diseases. Adding natural foods including those packed with flavonoids gives our body the ammunition to fight many dangerous lines of cancer so we can live a life free of disease.

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Berries and Grape Seed Promote Brain Health

February 9, 2011

(Article first published as Berries and Grapes Improve Memory and Brain Health on Technorati.)

Super Nutrients Shown to Protect Against Memory Loss

Super Nutrients Shown to Protect Against Memory Loss

Cognitive decline is unnatural. Millions of aging adults consider an impaired capacity to think, reason and form new memories as the inevitable course of declining health. By accepting brain aging as normal, we condemn our senior years and live in constant fear of whether we will remember our family and friends or retain our personal identity.

Loss of cognition as we age is not normal. There is no programmed switch that diminishes our ability to reason and remember events, names and faces. The brain is susceptible to many of the damaging effects of inflammation, free radicals and insulin resistance that lead to chronic illness. Blueberries and grape seed extract show great potential in the fight against brain aging and cognitive decline.

Blueberries are a Powerful Brain Antioxidant

Blueberries are a Powerful Brain Antioxidant

Blueberries are a Powerful Brain Antioxidant

The human brain performs millions of electrical and chemically mediated actions every second and generates a large number of free radicals in the process that can damage normal neuronal function. Any natural agent that can neutralize the effect of free radicals will provide necessary protection and prevent brain aging.

Anthocyanins and flavanols are natural protective compounds found in high concentration in blueberries and are known to be able to cross the critical blood-brain barrier and influence brain function. The result of research published in the journal Nutrition shows that dietary supplementation with blueberries for as little as 30 days can slow and even reverse the decline in mental function associated with age. The study authors concluded “this illustrates a surprisingly prompt and powerful effect of an antioxidant dietary intervention.”

Blueberries Enhance Critical Neuronal Communications

Researchers know that blueberries and other members of the purple berry family are linked with lowered incidence of age-related dementia and Alzheimer`s disease. While the exact mechanism of action is not fully understood, prior studies have shown that the active compounds in berries exert their effects on learning and memory by enhancing existing neuronal connections, improving cellular communications and stimulating neuronal regeneration.

Grape Seed Extract Can Rebuild Brain Cell Networks

Grape Seed Extract Imporves Brain Structure Integrity

Grape Seed Extract Improves Brain Structure Integrity

Grape seed extract is a significant source of naturally occurring phenolic compounds that are known to bolster the structural integrity of brain cells and brain cell networks. Research provided by a study published in the journal Phytotherapy Research documents the ability of grape seed extract to stimulate the production of new brain cells. Researchers were able to show that compounds in grape seed extract activated genes that controlled cellular rejuvenation. Additionally, grape seed extract strengthened existing brain cell connections in the memory control center of the brain (hippocampus).

Loss of memory and the ability to learn and form thoughts are functions that should not be lost as we age. Cognitive decline can be prevented by eating a diet void of processed foods, sugars and damaging hydrogenated fats. Eat a cup of wild blueberries each day and supplement with grape seed extract to provide critical antioxidant support and prevent the assault from free radical damage.