Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Not All Antioxidants Are Created Equal

Date:
June 28, 2007
Source:
USDA/Agricultural Research Service
Summary:
They've been said to stall aging, ward off disease and wage internal war against the harmful free radicals that pummel our bodies every day. But just how well do antioxidants--those all-powerful compounds often found in richly colored fruits and vegetables, such as blueberries, blackberries and red cabbage--actually perform inside the human body?

Eating fruits, like those pictured above, could boost levels of antioxidants in our blood and lead to a lower risk of chronic degenerative disease.
Credit: Photo by Scott Bauer

They've been said to stall aging, ward off disease and wage internal war against the harmful free radicals that pummel our bodies every day. But just how well do antioxidants—those all-powerful compounds often found in richly colored fruits and vegetables, such as blueberries, blackberries and red cabbage—actually perform inside the human body?

Nutritionists with the Agricultural Research Service (ARS), the U.S. Department of Agriculture's chief scientific research agency, recently tackled this question. Their findings appear in the current issue of the Journal of the American College of Nutrition.

Led by Ronald Prior, an ARS chemist who works at the Arkansas Children's Nutrition Center in Little Rock, the researchers investigated how the consumption of different fruits affected volunteers' antioxidant status.

They did this by measuring the plasma (blood) antioxidant capacity (AOC) of volunteers who'd just ingested blueberries, cherries, dried plums, dried-plum juice, grapes, kiwis or strawberries.

The series of ARS studies confirmed what many antioxidant experts have long suspected: that the free-radical-busting compounds found in foods are quite complex, with some apparently being easier to absorb and utilize than others.

For instance, the researchers found that despite their high antioxidant content, plums did not raise plasma AOC levels in volunteers. According to Prior, one of the major phytochemicals in plums is chlorogenic acid, a compound not readily absorbed by humans.

As for the wild blueberry, a larger-than-average serving of this much-heralded antioxidant source was needed to boost plasma AOC levels. A noticeable climb in AOC wasn't detected until volunteers consumed at least a half-cup serving of the berries.

The volunteers' consumption of grapes and kiwifruit both led to noticeable spikes in plasma AOC. But it's not clear yet which compounds were responsible for the increased levels.

Alternatively, when volunteers were asked to consume a shake containing protein, carbohydrates and fat, with no antioxidants, their blood antioxidant levels dropped.

While additional research is needed to determine if elevated plasma AOC levels translate to a lower risk for chronic degenerative disease, the current ARS study is an important first step in efforts to establish recommendations for antioxidants in the diet.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by USDA/Agricultural Research Service. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

USDA/Agricultural Research Service. "Not All Antioxidants Are Created Equal." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 28 June 2007. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/06/070628063531.htm>.
USDA/Agricultural Research Service. (2007, June 28). Not All Antioxidants Are Created Equal. ScienceDaily. Retrieved August 20, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/06/070628063531.htm
USDA/Agricultural Research Service. "Not All Antioxidants Are Created Equal." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/06/070628063531.htm (accessed August 20, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Raw: World's Oldest Man Lives in Japan

Raw: World's Oldest Man Lives in Japan

AP (Aug. 20, 2014) A 111-year-old Japanese was certified as the world's oldest man by Guinness World Records on Wednesday. Sakari Momoi, a native of Fukushima in northern Japan, was given a certificate at a hospital in Tokyo. (Aug. 20) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Ebola-Hit Sierra Leone's Freetown a City on Edge

Ebola-Hit Sierra Leone's Freetown a City on Edge

AFP (Aug. 19, 2014) Residents of Sierra Leone's capital voice their fears as the Ebola virus sweeps through west Africa. Duration: 00:56 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
101-Year-Old Working Man Has All The Advice You Need

101-Year-Old Working Man Has All The Advice You Need

Newsy (Aug. 19, 2014) Herman Goldman has worked at the same lighting store for almost 75 years. Find out his secrets to a happy, productive life. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Researcher Testing on-Field Concussion Scanners

Researcher Testing on-Field Concussion Scanners

AP (Aug. 19, 2014) Four Texas high school football programs are trying out an experimental system designed to diagnose concussions on the field. The technology is in response to growing concern over head trauma in America's most watched sport. (Aug. 19) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins