Blueberries fight fat

Blueberries are a delicious food and what makes them stand out among delicious foods is that they are also healthy. The pigments that give blueberries their colour are also antioxidant and anti-inflammatory agents in the human body. This much has been well established and then two months ago in this news service we reported that blueberries can reduce blood pressure. Now a new study has added further to the blueberry legend by suggesting that these cyan berries might fight obesity.

In Sweden dried blueberry soup has been used by doctors for decades as a treatment for childhood diarrhoea. The European cousin of the blueberry, the bilberry, was used in jam during World War II to improve night vision for British fighter pilots flying night missions over the Continent. Add in their powerful antioxidant effects and blueberries have had a diverse medical history. Of all its actions though, given the health threat posed by obesity, if bluerries can indeed fight fat then it may deserve that overused title of a “superfood”.

In the new study researchers extracted the polyphenols from blueberries and used them on tissue cultures of fat cells taken from mice. The polyphenols were found to have two significant effects.

Firstly, the fat cells that were exposed to blueberry phenols differentiated to lesser degree than other fat cells, so there were less fat cells. Secondly, the fat content of each cell among the cells exposed to blueberry phenols was significantly lower than among other fat cells. The highest dose of blueberry phenols yielded a 73 per cent reduction in fats.

Given the scrumptious nature of these blue bits of nature’s bounty, there is no reason not to be getting on the outside of a few blueberries every day (when it is blueberry season in your area).

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The WellBeing Team

The WellBeing Team

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