The increased consumption of fruits and vegetables and an increase in antioxidant capacity of human plasma

Known and proven is the positive effect of increased consumption of fruits and vegetables in the risk of chronic diseases, and positive influence on the antioxidant nutrients. So today is recommended 2-3 servings of fruits and 3-5 servings of vegetables daily. This scientific study would show the impact of increased consumption of fruits and vegetables to the overall antioxidant status and did this increases the antioxidant status of the human plasma.

Antioxidants are nutrients in our foods which can prevent or slow down the oxidative damage to the body. As the cells of the body use oxygen, at the same time produce free radicals that have harmful effects on cells, and thus to our organism. Heart disease, diabetes and cancer are due to damage caused by free radicals. Precisely Antioxidants operate against free radicals, clean the body from them and repair and reduce the damage they have done, and are useful for improving the immunity.

For the study is observed 36 persons, 18 young people (20-40 years) and 18 elderly people (60-80 years), 9 males and 9 females in each age group. Observed people were healthy, non-smokers, have not consumed alcohol and did not use antibiotics and supplements of vitamins and minerals for at least four weeks before the start of the observation. Observed people are divided into two groups, which had a control diet. Groups was 15 days on a controlled diet. Diet of group A and group B have 10 portions of fruits and vegetables daily. The difference was that the group B between day 6 and day 10 received two servings of broccoli per day. After 15 days, came a break of at least 6 weeks between re-switching to 15 days controlled diet. Antioxidant capacity in plasma (measured as oxygen radical absorbing capacity – ORAC) and alpha-tocopherol (vitamin B) was measured on the 1st, 6th, 11th and 16th days.

The results show that a daily intake of antioxidants from fruits and vegetables increases the total antioxidant status of the human plasma, and increased intake of 10 servings per day  significantly increases the total antioxidant status of the human plasma. The scientists who created the study emphasizes that these results are encouraging for further efforts to compel people on greater consumption of fruits and vegetables, especially knowing the other positive effects of the consumption of fruit and vegetables for human health.



[Cao 1998] Cao G, Booth SL, Sadowski JA, Prior RL. Increases in human plasma antioxidant capacity after consumption of controlled diets high in fruit and vegetables. The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition 1998;68:1081–7

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