Paresh Dandona, MD: Orange juice can help to reduce vascular inflammation
By: Felicia Breedy
Free radicals, also known as reactive oxygen species, can cause inflammation in blood vessel linings and contribute to an increased risk for heart attacks and strokes. New data from researchers at the University of Buffalo show that drinking orange juice with meals high in fats and carbohydrates helps to prevent blood vessel damage and reduces inflammatory stress. Orange juice, which contains large amounts of flavanoids, is a major antioxidant that can counter the effects of inflammation. Paresh Dandona, MD, the senior author of
this study, is the recipient of a Clinical Translational Research Award from the American Diabetes Association. In the March 31, 2010 edition of ScienceDaily Dr. Dandona states, “These data emphasize that a high-fat, high-carbohydrate meal is profoundly and rapidly proinflammatory, and that this process occurs at the cellular and molecular level.”
Study participants included three groups of normal-weight, healthy men and women between the ages of 20 and 40. Meals consisted of an egg muffin, sausage muffin, hash browns and orange juice in various concentrations. Analysis of blood samples after a meal showed that free radicals increased an average of 62 percent with water, 63 percent with glucose and 47 percent with orange juice. Thus, there was a decrease in the amount of free radicals when consuming the orange juice. There was also an increase in blood components known as toll-like receptors, which circulate on mononuclear cells. These play a role in the development of inflammation as well as obesity and insulin resistance. In addition, orange juice prevented an increase in an important mediator of insulin resistance known as SOCS-3, which contributes to type 2 diabetes.
Dr. Dandona emphasizes that vascular inflammation may become permanent if a person consumes high fat and carbohydrate foods regularly. As he states, “The choice of safe foods that are not proinflammatory may provide protection from the unending cycle of post-meal and cumulative inflammation. This choice may lower the risk of atherosclerosis and resistance to insulin.”
(Ghanim H, Sia CL, Upadhyay M, Korzeniewski K, Viswanathan P, Abuaysheh S, Mohanty P, Dandona P. Orange juice neutralizes the proinflammatory effect of a high-fat, high-carbohydrate meal and prevents endotoxin increase and Toll-like receptor expression. The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. 2010 Apr;91(4):940-9. Epub 2010 Mar 3.)
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