Smoothies are a delicious, convenient way to get the important fruits and vegetables you need for a healthy diet. But is a banana and blueberry smoothie the perfect combination? Researchers at the University of California, Davis, suggest that blending certain ingredients into smoothies can affect whether your body is fortified.
This research is today food and functionused smoothies to test how different levels of polyphenol oxidase, an enzyme found in many fruits and vegetables, affected the levels of flavanols in food absorbed by the body. . Flavanols are a group of bioactive compounds that are good for heart and cognitive health and are naturally found in common smoothie ingredients: apples, pears, blueberries, blackberries, grapes and cocoa.
“We are very hands-on about how common foods and food preparations, such as banana-based smoothies, can affect the availability of flavanols to be absorbed after ingestion. I tried to understand it on a sensible level,” said Javier Ottaviani, lead author and director of the Core Research Institute. Mars Edge, part of Mars, Inc., is an adjunct researcher in the Department of Nutrition at the University of California, Davis.
If you slice an apple or peel a banana, the fruit will quickly brown. This is caused by polyphenol oxidase (PPO), an enzyme naturally present in these foods. Browning occurs when food containing the enzyme is exposed to air or is cut or scratched. The researchers wanted to know if consuming freshly made smoothies made with a variety of his PPO-containing fruits affected the amount of flavanols available to the body.
banana vs berry
The researchers asked participants to drink a smoothie made with bananas, which originally had high PPO activity, and a smoothie made with mixed berries, which had a low PPO activity. Participants also took flavanol capsules as a control. After ingesting the smoothie samples and capsules, blood and urine samples were analyzed to determine the levels of flavanols present in the body. Researchers found that people who drank the banana smoothie had 84% lower levels of flavanols in their bodies compared to controls.
“We were really surprised to see how quickly the addition of one banana reduced the level of flavanols in the smoothie and the level of flavanols absorbed by the body,” said Ottaviani. “This highlights how food preparation and combination can affect the absorption of food compounds in foods.”
Last year, the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics published dietary recommendations advising people to consume 400-600 milligrams of flavanols daily for cardiometabolic health. Ottaviani suggests that people looking to consume these flavanols should combine flavanol-rich fruits such as berries with other ingredients with low PPO activity such as pineapple, oranges, mangoes and yogurt to make smoothies. said it should be considered.
He also said bananas are still the best fruit to eat or put in smoothies. For those who want to consume smoothies with bananas or other high PPO activity fruits and vegetables such as beet vegetables, it is advised not to combine smoothies with flavanol-rich fruits such as berries, grapes, cocoa.
The findings may spur future research into how other foods are cooked and their impact on flavanols. For example, Professor Ottaviani said that tea is a major dietary source of flavanols, and that depending on how it is prepared, different amounts of flavanols are available. for absorption.
“This is certainly an area that deserves more attention in the area of polyphenols and bioactive compounds in general,” said Ottaviani.
Jodi Ensunsa, Reedmond Fong, Jennifer Kimball, and Alan Crozier are all from the UC Davis Department of Nutrition, UC Davis Department of Internal Medicine, University of Reading, King Saud University, and Mars. Researchers also contributed to this study.
For more information:
Javier I. Ottaviani et al, Effect of polyphenol oxidase on flavan-3-ol bioavailability in fruit smoothies: a controlled, single-blind, cross-over study. food & function (2023). DOI: 10.1039/D3FO01599H
Quote: Get Maximum Health Benefits From Fruit Smoothies: Researchers Find Flavanol Levels Lower When Bananas Are Added (August 24, 2023) https://medicalxpress.com/news /2023-08-health-benefits-fruit- added smoothies taken on 24 Aug 2023.html
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