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Fruit & veg juice concentrate reduces systemic inflammation in obese people

By Stephen Daniells+

13-Mar-2017
Last updated on 13-Mar-2017 at 15:53 GMT2017-03-13T15:53:43Z

© iStock
© iStock

An encapsulated concentrate of fruit and vegetable juice may reduce systemic inflammation and improve cholesterol levels in obese people, says a new study.

Eight weeks of supplementation with the Juice Plus+ Orchard, Garden and Berry Blends product led to significant reductions in total and LDL cholesterol, while levels of tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-alpha – a marker of inflammation) also decreased, according to findings published in Nutrients .

“[T]his randomized [sic] controlled trial in obese, older individuals shows that [fruit and vegetable] concentrate supplementation has the potential to improve the metabolic profile of overweight and obese individuals by reducing blood lipid levels and systemic inflammation, as well as improving body composition,” wrote researchers from the University of Newcastle in Australia.

“The size of the improvements is clinically significant, as the reduction in total cholesterol that we observed in the full cohort is estimated to be equivalent to a weight loss of 4 kg and an 8% to 9% reduction in CVD risk.

“In the subset of participants who had elevated systemic inflammation at baseline, the reduction in total cholesterol was equivalent to a 9 kg weight loss and an 18% to 19% reduction in CVD risk,” wrote the researchers.

Study details

Fifty six adults with BMIs over 28 kg/m2 and over the age of 40 were recruited to participate in the double-blinded, parallel, randomized placebo-controlled trial. The volunteers were randomly assigned to consume six capsules per day of the fruit and vegetable juice concentrate or placebo of eight weeks. 

Results showed that, for all participants in the Juice Plus+ group, TNF-alpha levels decreased, with the difference with placebo approaching statistical significance. When the researchers limited their analysis to people with high systemic inflammation at the start of the study, there were statistically significant reductions in the fruit and vegetable group compared to placebo.

In this high systemic inflammation subgroup the researchers also found greater impacts on total lean mass.

Genetic analysis revealed that expression of several genes involved in the metabolic formation of fat (lipogenesis) were altered, while expression of other genes involved in cholesterol production, insulin signaling, and inflammation were also affected, said the researchers.

“We conclude that in obese individuals, who typically have a low fruit and vegetable intake, F&V concentrate supplementation may be beneficial for improving the metabolic profile, thus reducing the risk of developing chronic inflammatory disease.”

Source: Nutrients
2017, 9(2), 116; doi:10.3390/nu9020116
“Effects of an Encapsulated Fruit and Vegetable Juice Concentrate on Obesity-Induced Systemic Inflammation: A Randomised Controlled Trial”
Authors: E.J. Williams et al. 

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