• Katie Floyd

Anthocyanins and Dyslipidemia

Purple corn is well-known to be rich in anthocyanins, a subgroup of flavonoids that are responsible for the red, blue, and purple pigments found in many vegetables, fruits, and flowers. Studies have shown a relationship between anthocyanins and their anti-oxidative and anti-inflammatory capabilities. However, their dose–response relationship has not been widely studied.

In this study, researchers investigated the dose-responsive relationship of anthocyanins with oxidative stress and inflammation in people with dyslipidemia. Dyslipidemia refers to having an unhealthy level of lipids (fat) in your blood. According to Healthline.com, if you have dyslipidemia, it typically means your LDL (low-density lipoprotein) levels or triglycerides are elevated. But it can also mean your HDL (high-density lipoprotein) levels are too low. LDL cholesterol is considered “bad” cholesterol, while HDL cholesterol is considered “good” and helps remove LDL cholesterol from your blood. High LDL levels can form plaques in the walls of your arteries and too much plaque in the arteries can cause heart attacks. (1)

During a 12-week, randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial, 169 participants with dyslipidemia were randomly assigned to one of four dosing groups: a placebo group, or one of three anthocyanin groups (40 mg/day, 80 mg/day, or 320 mg/day). A series of measurements were taken at baseline, 6 weeks, and then 12 weeks. (2)

The different dosing groups would allow researchers to study the dose-response relationship of anthocyanin supplementation. Researchers in this study cited previous human studies that demonstrated anthocyanin-rich foods or anthocyanin extracts inhibiting metabolic diseases, explaining their anti-oxidative and anti-inflammatory capacity. Among those studies, only a single dose of anthocyanins was used to observe their effects on oxidation and inflammation, which has made the effective dose of anthocyanin supplementation unclear. (3)

Results from the study indicate that anthocyanin supplementation for 12 weeks in a dose–response manner, positively improved the anti-oxidative and anti-inflammatory capacity in individuals with dyslipidemia. After 12-weeks of anthocyanins at 80 mg/day and 320 mg/day, inflammatory cytokines were significantly decreased, whereas a lower dose of 40mg/day did not have a significant impact on inflammatory cytokines. Also, 12 weeks of anthocyanins at 320 mg/day showed a significant decrease in oxidative stress biomarkers, a larger decrease than both 80 and 40mg/day. (4)

Read the full study: https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S2213231720300549

(1) “Dyslipidemia: What You Need to Know.” Healthline, https://www.healthline.com/health/dyslipidemia. Accessed on 16 April 2020

(2-4) Zhang, H., Xu, Z., Zhao, H., Wang, X., Pang, J., Li, Q., Yang, Y., & Ling, W. (2020). Anthocyanin supplementation improves anti-oxidative and anti-inflammatory capacity in a dose-response manner in subjects with dyslipidemia. Redox biology, 32, 101474. Advance online publication. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.redox.2020.101474

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