Hundreds of studies support the use of anthocyanins, both dietary sources and as supplements, for improving health and warding off disease. Anthocyanins have a wide range of biological activities including: redox/antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, anti-carcinogenic, fostering eye health, neuroprotective, prevention of LDL oxidation, improvement of capillary stability, supporting collagen, and increasing intercellular levels of vitamin C.
The following are some current findings:
A recent study examined the association between the intake of vegetables, fruits and berries (together and separately) and the risk of all-cause mortality and cause-specific mortality due to cancer and cardiovascular disease. Researchers found that men who consumed vegetables, fruit and berries more than 27 times per month had an 8-10 % reduced risk of all-cause mortality compared with men with a lower consumption, including a 20% reduced risk of stroke mortality; in addition, fruit consumption was inversely related to overall cancer mortality. The researchers concluded that consumption of vegetables, fruits and berries was associated with a delayed risk of all-cause mortality and of mortality due to cancer and stroke.2 Additional research shows that anthocyanins inhibit nuclear factor-kB activation, thus reducing the pro-inflammatory mediators that are linked to the initiation of degenerative diseases.
Enhance Heart Health
In 2010, a report in Nutrition Reviews evaluated studies on anthocyanins, and concluded that berries (either fresh, juiced, or freeze-dried) and purified anthocyanin extracts convey significant improvements in cardiovascular risk factors including LDL oxidation, lipid peroxidation, total plasma antioxidant capacity, dyslipidemia, and glucose metabolism.
According to the report, both healthy subjects and people with existing metabolic risk factors benefited from anthocyanins. Among other favorable actions, anthocyanins increase endothelial nitric oxide formation, decrease oxidative stress, and inhibit inflammation.4 In 2011, a study published in theAmerican Journal of Clinical Nutrition showed that anthocyanins also help to normalize blood pressure. Anthocyanins appear to help mitigate the effects of angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE), which causes arteries to constrict and raises blood pressure.In a subsequent study reported in 2012, researchers found that a higher intake of anthocyanins and flavones are inversely associated with less arterial stiffness, central blood pressure, and atherosclerosis.6
The evidence continues to mount for the benefits of anthocyanins and other flavonoid compounds. A 2013 review and analysis of studies reported that dietary intake of six classes of flavonoids, namely flavonols, anthocyanidins, proanthocyanidins, flavones, flavanones and flavan-3-ols, significantly decreases the risk of cardiovascular disease.
Defend Against Cancer
Promising research indicates that anthocyanins may help to protect against several forms of cancer. According to a laboratory study published in 2010 in Phytotherapy Research, anthocyanins extracted from blueberries were shown to inhibit the growth of breast cancer cells.8
In a 2010 study reported in Pharmacological Research, researchers at Ohio State University found that a variety of berries prevented esophageal cancer in rats exposed to a carcinogenic compound. The rats were fed a diet made up of 5% berries; although each of the different groups consumed a different type of berry, all types of berries were deemed equally effective at inhibiting tumor initiation and development.
Anthocyanins counteract the imbalance of oxidative and antioxidative factors, thus protecting health. Black currant (Ribes nigrum) contains high amounts of anthocyanins, with significant antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects. Research indicates that black currant juice could be of value in preventing and treating oxidative stress- and inflammation-driven cancers; a recent study demonstrated that black currant skin containing an anthocyanin-rich fraction inhibits the proliferation of liver cancer cells.
Protect Against Diabetes
Studies suggest that anthocyanins may lower blood glucose by improving insulin resistance, protecting β-cells, increasing secretion of insulin, and reducing digestion of sugars in the small intestine.In a long-term review reported in 2012 in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, researchers collected diet and lifestyle information from more than 200,000 adult men and women beginning in 1980 and continuing through 2003. After analyzing the data, the researchers determined that people who consumed the most anthocyanins were 15% less likely to develop type 2 diabetes, and those who ate the most blueberries were 23% less likely to develop type 2 diabetes.11A recent trial demonstrated that anthocyanin supplementation exerts beneficial metabolic effects in subjects with type 2 diabetes by improving dyslipidemia, enhancing antioxidant capacity, and preventing insulin
resistance.12 In another study, anthocyanin-rich foods were associated with lower insulin and inflammation levels in woman ages 18-76.13 Another study shows that anthocyanins may help to reduce obesity.
Support Neurological Health and Response
In a 2010 study published in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, researchers found that blueberry supplementation improves memory in older adults. Adults with early memory changes who were given wild blueberry juice for 12 weeks were found to have improved memory skills, as well as lower glucose levels and reduced depressive symptoms. Along with the antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects of blueberry anthocyanins, the researchers noted that, “anthocyanins have been associated with increased neuronal signaling in brain centers, mediating memory function as well as improved glucose disposal, benefits that would be expected to mitigate neurodegeneration.”
A 2012 study reported in the American Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease and Other Dementias found that eating more berries reduces cognitive decline in the elderly. In the study, researchers determined that blueberries and strawberries seem to offer the greatest benefits for protecting brain function.16
Ward Off Colds And Flu
Elderberries have long been used in herbal medicine to fight colds and influenza. In a 2009 laboratory study reported in Phytochemistry, elderberry anthocyanins were found to bind to H1N1 swine flu virus, blocking its ability to infect host cells. The researchers noted the elderberry anthocyanins acted in a way similar to that of the pharmaceutical drug oseltamivir (Tamiflu).17These are just a few of the recent findings of the numerous health benefits of anthocyanins. Because of their wide ranging protective properties, I recommend including anthocyanin-rich foods in your daily diet, as well as concentrated supplements of anthocyanins. One of my favorite ways of enjoying the benefits of anthocyanins is with a fruit smoothie that incorporates frozen or fresh berries, pomegranate juice, and concentrated fruit anthocyanins. The following recipe makes a delicious breakfast or snack:
The most important accelerator of skin aging is UV radiation exposure. A single exposure to intense radiation triggers various inflammatory pathways and oxidative damage, while repeated exposure leads to accelerated skin aging (photo-aging), thickened skin, and precancerous lesions. In addition, repeated exposure causes excessive formation of typically necessary enzymes called metalloproteinases (MMP), which when present at abnormally elevated levels, degrade skin collagen and elastin, leading to wrinkles (Rojo 2013).
Anthocyanins reduce MMP production (Wang 2008). They also protect against UV skin damage by inactivating highly reactive molecules such as free radicals and reactive oxygen species (ROS) formed during sun exposure that start a chain reaction producing significant cell and tissue damage. As well, they increase levels of Phase II detoxification enzymes (anti-oxidant proteins) including glutathione S-transferase, that help eliminate toxins, and reduce lipid peroxidation (fat damage) and DNA damage that can trigger cancer formation.
Is Anthocyanin good for you
Anthocyanins found in plants have a wide range of usage. Blue, red, and purple colored pigments extracted from flowers, fruits, and vegetables are traditionally used as dye and food colorant. Besides being used as natural colorants, some of the anthocyanin-rich flowers and fruits have been traditionally used as medicine to treat various diseases. On the other hand, plant anthocyanins have been widely studied for their medicinal values. Anthocyanins possess antidiabetic, anticancer, anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, and anti-obesity effects, as well as prevention of cardiovascular diseases (CVDs). Therefore, anthocyanins extracted from edible plants are potential pharmaceutical ingredients.
Anthocyanin benefits for hair
Hair Health: The rich variety of antioxidants, ellagic acid, and vitamins help battle hair loss, moisturize the hair, and prevent dandruff. Even study participants who only "moderately" adhered to the diet lowered their risk of Alzheimer's by 35%. Acai is an indigenous berry from the Amazon rainforest. Ripe pears contain natural sugar called glucitol, which nourishes the scalp, feeds the hair roots and keeps the hair follicles hydrated. I cannot verify the truth of this claim but it is certain that rose tea is a very rich source of the vitamin and that vitamin C has well understood antioxidant qualities. Plus, this … Randomized controlled trials show a possibility that spearmint may help with this condition, but further, longer studies are necessary .
It is a blue (or in rare instances, white) flower from Southeast Asia. As a gold open access journal, there are no barriers to accessing content. Enumerating the benefits of black rice Shilpa Arora, Macrobiotic Nutritionist and Health Practitioner, says" It is loaded with anti-oxidants especially anthocyanin which is great for diabetics, heart patients and helps brain activity. A key ingredient in Butterly Pea is Anthocyanin, thought to increase blood flow in the scalp and sustain and fortify hair follicles. Red cabbage is a nutrient-rich, cruciferous, or Brassica vegetable that’s related to cauliflower and kale. One such common health condition prevailing all over the world today is Diabetes. It’s sometimes called purple cabbage since its leaves are a dark purple-reddish color. This antioxidant-rich fruit stimulates the immune system and boosts energy.
The antioxidant activity of anthocyanins in food is well known. Numerous antioxidant assays have been proposed to measure the capacity of anthocyanins to prevent the oxidation process that naturally occurs. Different solvents, temperatures, and pH levels are applied in each assay, and these factors should be taken into account in order to obtain useful and reproducible results. The concentration and the structure of these compounds are directly related to their antioxidant capacity and their environment. However, the effectiveness of the anthocyanin ingestion against diseases is also influenced by its bioavailability.
Novel methodologies that simulate the digestion process have been developed in order to facilitate the current knowledge of anthocyanins bioavailability. Studies highlight the potential synergy effect between parent compounds and their derivatives (metabolites, conjugated products, and microbe-generated metabolites). The aim of this review is to provide an overview of advantages and disadvantages of the most common methods to determine the antioxidant activity of anthocyanins, chemical structure, and concentration of these compounds in different edible fruits, vegetables, and plants; their bioavailability after intake; as well as the main therapeutic effect described in the scientific literature.
How much anthocyanin per day
The risk of toxicity from the food supply is minute given the low bioavailability of anthocyanins. The Joint FAO/WHO Expert Committee on Food Additives has established an acceptable daily intake of 2.5 mg/kg per day for anthocyanins from grape-skin extracts but not for anthocyanins in general.
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