Science News 05/12/2011

Ok the polyphenols, but which one? And how much?

It is all matter of variety and quantity. The blueberry juice is healthier than the single components that it contains. To get enough resveratrol we should drink many liters of wine a day

The blueberry juice as a whole is more effective than the single antioxidants that compose it. This is one of the interesting results of a research lead by Terri Camesano of the Worcester Polytechnic Institute.

As a first step the Worcester researchers studied protoanthocyanins, a component of blueberry which is active against pathogens, such as E. Coli. However, during the research, scientists noticed that the effect of the whole pool of component of blueberry was more effective that those of the single molecules one at the time. This has been proved by treating bacterial cultures with single protoanthocyanins or with 100% pure blueberry juice.

As for E. Coli, blueberries take advantage of the specific characteristics of this bacterium. As a matter of fact, E. Coli has protuberances that stand out its surface; these are used to couple with human cells. Blueberry (juice or single component) targets precisely these protuberances, by decreasing their length. This impairs the possibility of E. Coli to attack tissues.

Resveratrol is a great antioxidant against infarctions, strokes and diabetes, but one should take 150 mg of it a day to get a nutraceutic effect.
A glass of wine typically contains 1 mg of resveratrol; hence wine doesn’t have a high enough concentration of this compound to produce a real nutraceutic effect. Under medical supervision it could be possible to take resveratrol supplements in order to induce a lower energetic consumption, together with a fat reduction in the leaver and a sugar decrease in the blood.
Moreover, resveratrol can induce a 5 points decrease in the systolic pressure value.

di Ernesto Vania