Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Health: polyphenols on a plate

02.04.2007
Polyphenols have much better antioxidant properties than vitamins, and have been the object of growing interest on the part of nutritionists, epidemiologists, agrifood firms and consumers over the past decade or so.

Their main advantage is that they protect against numerous diseases such as cancer or cardiovascular disease. In particular, they help fight the formation of free radicals in the human body and thus slow cell ageing. They are found in many common consumer products, primarily in fruit and vegetables but also in processed products such as chocolate, tea or wine.

Nobody knew until now the precise total polyphenol content of different foods or the level of consumption in France. A composition table compiled by CIRAD and its partners now goes some way towards providing an answer to those questions. The table was produced under the French Research Ministry's Nutrialis programme. Researchers studied 162 samples from 24 vegetables and 71 samples from 28 fruits. The total polyphenol content of 85 tea samples was also analysed.

It is not always the fruits and vegetables with the highest polyphenol contents that are the most consumed

It is strawberries, lychees and grapes that have the highest polyphenol contents, but vegetables are not far behind, particularly artichokes, parsley and brussels sprouts. Moreover, the total amount consumed plays a considerable role. As Pierre Brat, a CIRAD biochemist, points out: "If we look at total polyphenol content in apples, they rank fifth compared to other fruits, but the extent of their consumption places them first!". Likewise, in terms of vegetables, potatoes rank just 19th, but their massive consumption means that they account for almost 60% of the polyphenols obtained from vegetables.

This was the aim of the table compiled by CIRAD and its partners: to set product composition against consumption. The working method used to do this is in itself a tangible result of the study. In effect, the researchers had to select a range of fresh fruits and vegetables that was representative of consumption in France. To this end, they took account of the different varieties eaten, the different production sites and countries and where those fruits and vegetables are purchased. Total polyphenol content was then analysed using a technique adapted from a chemical colorimetric assay method: the Folin Ciocalteu method. The researchers then established a relation between the result obtained and consumption levels. In this last stage, the team's links with the Agence française de sécurité sanitaire des aliments (AFSSA) proved crucial, since the researchers were able to use two AFSSA databases: one on food consumption - Suvimax - and the other - Secodip - on fresh fruit and vegetable purchases. Moreover, AFSSA will be making the table available to researchers and the general public on its website shortly.

Researchers are preparing to analyse the polyphenol content of processed products

This research is now continuing under a new project, Phenobase, coordinated by the Centre technique de la conservation des produits agricoles in Avignon, in which CIRAD is also involved. The aim is to supplement the composition table, this time by looking at the so-called "processed" products included in the daily diet in France.

Both these products have called upon CIRAD researchers' expertise, notably in terms of citrus fruit treatments. The method developed under the Nutrialis programme, for its part, is currently being disseminated to CIRAD's partners in developing countries.

Helen Burford | alfa
Further information:
http://www.cirad.fr/en/actualite/communique.php?id=673

More articles from Agricultural and Forestry Science:

nachricht Researchers discover a new link to fight billion-dollar threat to soybean production
14.02.2017 | University of Missouri-Columbia

nachricht Important to maintain a diversity of habitats in the sea
14.02.2017 | University of Gothenburg

All articles from Agricultural and Forestry Science >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Breakthrough with a chain of gold atoms

In the field of nanoscience, an international team of physicists with participants from Konstanz has achieved a breakthrough in understanding heat transport

In the field of nanoscience, an international team of physicists with participants from Konstanz has achieved a breakthrough in understanding heat transport

Im Focus: DNA repair: a new letter in the cell alphabet

Results reveal how discoveries may be hidden in scientific “blind spots”

Cells need to repair damaged DNA in our genes to prevent the development of cancer and other diseases. Our cells therefore activate and send “repair-proteins”...

Im Focus: Dresdner scientists print tomorrow’s world

The Fraunhofer IWS Dresden and Technische Universität Dresden inaugurated their jointly operated Center for Additive Manufacturing Dresden (AMCD) with a festive ceremony on February 7, 2017. Scientists from various disciplines perform research on materials, additive manufacturing processes and innovative technologies, which build up components in a layer by layer process. This technology opens up new horizons for component design and combinations of functions. For example during fabrication, electrical conductors and sensors are already able to be additively manufactured into components. They provide information about stress conditions of a product during operation.

The 3D-printing technology, or additive manufacturing as it is often called, has long made the step out of scientific research laboratories into industrial...

Im Focus: Mimicking nature's cellular architectures via 3-D printing

Research offers new level of control over the structure of 3-D printed materials

Nature does amazing things with limited design materials. Grass, for example, can support its own weight, resist strong wind loads, and recover after being...

Im Focus: Three Magnetic States for Each Hole

Nanometer-scale magnetic perforated grids could create new possibilities for computing. Together with international colleagues, scientists from the Helmholtz Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf (HZDR) have shown how a cobalt grid can be reliably programmed at room temperature. In addition they discovered that for every hole ("antidot") three magnetic states can be configured. The results have been published in the journal "Scientific Reports".

Physicist Dr. Rantej Bali from the HZDR, together with scientists from Singapore and Australia, designed a special grid structure in a thin layer of cobalt in...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Booth and panel discussion – The Lindau Nobel Laureate Meetings at the AAAS 2017 Annual Meeting

13.02.2017 | Event News

Complex Loading versus Hidden Reserves

10.02.2017 | Event News

International Conference on Crystal Growth in Freiburg

09.02.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Positrons as a new tool for lithium ion battery research: Holes in the electrode

22.02.2017 | Power and Electrical Engineering

New insights into the information processing of motor neurons

22.02.2017 | Life Sciences

Healthy Hiking in Smart Socks

22.02.2017 | Innovative Products

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>