Volume 3 Number 2 May 2005

 

Review Articles
77 Soya administration and cognitive function in post-menopausal women
SANDRA E FILE, SARAH ELSABAGH AND DAVID E HARTLEY[ABSTRACT]
85 The use of dietary antioxidants and mitochondrial Co-factors to promote successful aging
ELIZABETH HEAD, CARL W. COTMAN, STEVEN C. ZICKER AND NORTON WILLIAM MILGRAM[ABSTRACT]
95 Plant genomics and plant breeding: At the root of human nutrition
SIMONA BAIMA[ABSTRACT]
113 Anthocyanins and anthocyanin-rich extracts in biology and medicine: biochemical, cellular, and medicinal properties
DILIP GHOSH[ABSTRACT]
125 Phenolic compounds in olive oil and olives
D. BOSKOU, G. BLEKAS AND M. TSIMIDOU[ABSTRACT]
Research Articles
137 A dietary supplement with bean extract decreases body weight, body fat, waist circumference and blood pressure in overweight and obese subjects.
G. STØA BIRKETVEDT, B. LANGBAKK AND J. FLORHOLMEN[ABSTRACT]
143 Book Review

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Current Topics in Nutraceutical Research, Volume 3, Number 2, pp. 77-84 (2005)

Soya administration and cognitive function in post-menopausal women
SANDRA E FILE, SARAH ELSABAGH AND DAVID E HARTLEY

ABSTRACT: Four recent studies have investigated the effects of soya on cognition in post-menopausal women, with treatment periods ranging from 6 weeks to 12 months. This review assesses evidence as to whether there are any cognitive benefits from soya administration, and whether they are specific to particular cognitive processes. It also considers whether the age of the women and/or the duration of treatment is of importance to the reported effects. Overall, there is little evidence to suggest that soya can improve attention. There were signiĄcant improvements in shortterm non-verbal memory (delayed matching to sample) only after 6 weeks of treatment. With longer treatments, effects were only at marginal levels of signiĄcance and thus they may become less pronounced with longer treatment. Alternatively, they may be limited to a younger age group of post-menopausal women (50-59 years). In contrast, long-term memory was improved after 12 weeks (picture recall) to 6 months (category generation) of treatment, suggesting that different cognitive functions may improve after different time-periods of soya administration. The most robust effects of soya were in the executive functions of mental flexibility and planning, in which improvements were seen at 6 weeks to 6 months and 6-12 weeks, respectively. The results from these studies indicate that both memory and executive functions can be improved as a result of soya treatment. This would be particularly useful in postmenopausal women, as this is a group in which declining cognitive performance is a common complaint. However, it will be important to determine whether cognitive benefits will persist with longer-term treatment.

 

 

 

Current Topics in Nutraceutical Research, Volume 3, Number 2, pp. 85-94 (2005)

The use of dietary antioxidants and mitochondrial Co-factors to promote successful aging
ELIZABETH HEAD, CARL W. COTMAN, STEVEN C. ZICKER AND NORTON WILLIAM MILGRAM

ABSTRACT: Progressive accumulation of oxidative damage to proteins, lipids and nucleotides may lead to neuronal dysfunction and cognitive decline in humans and animals. One of the primary sources of free radical species that can damage macromolecules is the mitochondrion. This review focuses on evidence of beneficial effects of antioxidant supplementation on cognitive function obtained from both human clinical trials and studies of animal models. Human observational studies and clinical trials variably report improved cognition with supplement use and reduced risk for the development of pathological aging. Further, a combination of antioxidants provides superior protection than administration of single compound supplements. In rodent models, administration of either antioxidants or mitochondrial cofactors improves behavioral and neuronal function outcome measures, with combined supplement approaches producing larger effects than single item supplements. Our work shows that long-term feeding with a diet rich in a broad spectrum of antioxidants leads to improved cognition, in a canine model of cognitive aging. We have also found that long-term maintenance on the enriched diet has neuroprotective effects manifest later in life. Collectively, the results from human and animal studies suggest that the intake of a broad spectrum of antioxidants, particularly through an enriched diet, may promote successful cognitive aging.

 

 

 

Current Topics in Nutraceutical Research, Volume 3, Number 2, pp. 95-113 (2005)

Plant genomics and plant breeding: At the root of human nutrition
SIMONA BAIMA

ABSTRACT: The production of more abundant and more nutritious food has been the main goal of all human populations since man started to raise crops and livestock. To reach this goal man has always modified the genetic content of the cultivated species. Recent advances due to the application of a functional genomics approach to the study of plant gene regulation, biochemistry and secondary metabolism is now providing the opportunity to intervene on the plant germplasm to modify targeted characteristics with greater precision and rapidity through marker assisted breeding or genetic engineering. Moreover, the same global approach and molecular profiling techniques can be exploited as tools for the assessment of the nutritional value and the absence of unintended effects in foods produced from new varieties. Interestingly, an increasing number of transgenic products under study are aimed at improving the nutritional quality and at increasing nutraceutical content and bioavailability in crop plants as a convenient alternative to supplementation and fortification. In addition, new varieties with very high or very low levels of a specific compound can be used by nutritionists and epidemiologists as valuable tools to investigate the biological activity and the nutritional value of single molecules present in the food matrix. Selected examples are presented to illustrate potential and limitations of agricultural biotechnology application and how system based plant genomic studies can help nutrition and health improvement.

 

 

 

Current Topics in Nutraceutical Research, Volume 3, Number 2, pp. 113-124 (2005)

Anthocyanins and anthocyanin-rich extracts in biology and medicine: biochemical, cellular, and medicinal properties
DILIP GHOSH

ABSTRACT: Anthocyanins are the largest group of watersoluble pigments in the plant kingdom, known collectively as flavonoids. More than 8000 flavonoids, and 500 anthocyanin structures had been reported by the year 2000 and more are continually being isolated. Anthocyanins are believed to display an array of beneficial actions on human health and well-being. Due to our increasing understanding and awareness of the potential beneficial human health effects, research on anthocyanins has recently intensified. During the past two decades an increasing number of studies have investigated the diverse protective effects elicited by anthocyanins present in various fruits and vegetables. These effects include protection against cancer, ischemic heart disease, diabetes, inflammation, allergy, and autogenesis. Other physiological effects are continually being investigated. The aim of the present article is to summarize the known bio-medicinal properties of anthocyanins and anthocyanin-rich extracts and our current understanding of their functional mechanisms.

 

 

 

 

Current Topics in Nutraceutical Research, Volume 3, Number 2, pp. 125-136 (2005)

Phenolic compounds in olive oil and olives
D. BOSKOU, G. BLEKAS AND M. TSIMIDOU

ABSTRACT: Over the past three decades accumulated laboratory and epidemiological studies have lead to the consensus that the consumption of virgin olive oil helps prevent chronic diseases and that many of the health benefits can be attributed to the presence of polar phenolic compounds. The latter are mainly tyrosol and hydroxytyrosol and their derivatives (aglycones of oleuropein and ligstroside, deacetoxy and dialdehydic forms of the aglycones), hydroxytyrosol acetate, the lignans pinoresinol and 1-acetoxypinoresinol, luteolin, apigenin and phenolic acids. In table olives free hydroxytyrosol and tyrosol prevail. The levels of total phenols and individual phenols profiles in the raw olives and the extracted oil depend on agronomic factors, maturity of olives, processing, packaging and storing. Health benefits attributed to olive oil phenols have been linked to their antioxidant properties and their potential to scavenge radicals and reactive species. Attempts to understand better the biological role of these biophenols focus on mechanisms related to improvement of in vivo antioxidant defences, biochemical markers for the assessment of oxidant stress and metabolism in the body.

 

 

 

 

Current Topics in Nutraceutical Research, Volume 3, Number 2, pp. 137-142 (2005)

A dietary supplement with bean extract decreases body weight, body fat, waist circumference and blood pressure in overweight and obese subjects.
G. STØA BIRKETVEDT, B. LANGBAKK AND J. FLORHOLMEN

ABSTRACT: Dietary supplements have frequently been reported to decrease body weight in short-term studies, but few studies have examined dietary supplements and changes in body weight while testing the impact on blood pressure in long-term studies. The aim of this study was to evaluate the long-term effects of a dietary supplement of a white kidney bean extract on body weight, % body fat, waist circumference and systolic and diastolic blood pressures without changes in lifestyle. Sixty-two overweight and obese volunteers were randomized to receive either a dietary supplement or a placebo. Two capsules of the dietary supplement or the placebo were administered three times daily for 3 months during this double-blinded, randomized phase. Excretion of fat in feces was measured. The Supplement Group was then invited to participate in an open label second phase for 9 months. At 12 months significant reductions were found in body weight, % body fat, waist circumference, and in systolic and in diastolic blood pressures. The bean extract significantly increased fat excretion in feces.