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Saturday, March 2, 2024
HomeBody Building SupplementsNature's Healthiest Chemical - Supplements and Nutrition - COMMUNITY

Nature’s Healthiest Chemical – Supplements and Nutrition – COMMUNITY


Anthocyanins and Where to Get Them

Nature’s coolest ingredient can limit fat gain, make you insulin sensitive, control blood sugar, and more.


Mother Nature creates delicious foods full of ingredients that give us long lives free from disease and many of the infirmities of aging. But then, in a perverse act of peevishness, she makes these ingredients largely unavailable to us.

I’m talking about the class of chemicals known as polyphenols. Many have powerful health effects but, unfortunately, they aren’t absorbed very well. Many just pass through the digestive system and into the sewage system.

For example, blueberries and blackberries contain a particularly powerful (and elusive) branch of polyphenols known as anthocyanins. Harnessing their power conveys an impressive list of beneficial effects, from limiting abdominal obesity to mimicking the life-extending capabilities of calorie-restriction diets. Getting at these anthocyanins, though, is hard unless you ingest them with the milk-protein casein or take the supplement route.

The Casein Connection

You know casein, right? It’s generally the best muscle-building protein, and it’s the basis of the best protein powders. If, however, you were to examine a high-quality casein through an electron microscope, you’d likely see peptides (short chains of amino acids) joined together in amorphous but stable agglomerates known as micelles.

For muscle-building, casein rich in micelles is particularly desirable because micellar casein is the only protein shown in lab studies to be anti-catabolic (Boire, 1997). So not only does it increase protein synthesis, it helps prevent muscle breakdown during and after intense exercise.

But there’s something else particularly beneficial about these micelle agglomerates – their internal structure is porous. Look inside them and you see channels a tad bigger than 5 nanometers. Look further and you see inner cavities ranging in size from 20 to 30 nanometers. These channels and cavities are of particular interest to us when it comes to blueberry anthocyanins (and probably other polyphenols).

The channels and cavities provide “safe passage” to anthocyanins and their metabolites, allowing them to bypass the stomach lining and enter the bloodstream where they can work their magic to make you healthier.

This isn’t just theory, either. Scientists recently combined blueberries with casein and, after feeding the mixture to rats, found that anthocyanins and their metabolites’ absorption increased from 1.5 to 10.1 times, depending on the specific anthocyanin or metabolite. There’s no reason to think it doesn’t work with humans, too.

Why Should I Care About These Anthocyanins?

We all know that blueberries are “good for us,” but it’s sometimes worth digging into what they can do. Their superpowers come from several anthocyanins and metabolites, but the one most interesting to humans is cyanidin-3-glucoside, or C3G.

This particular anthocyanin, responsible for much of the blueberry’s color, has the following effects on mammalian physiology:

You clearly want to get C3G and other berry anthocyanins and metabolites into your system, but just eating a handful of naked blueberries isn’t the best way to do it. You need to combine your berries with a casein-based protein drink, as in a blended protein drink. However, there’s another alternative.

This Works Even Better

Biotest faced the anthocyanin-absorption problem years ago when it wanted to bring its Indigo-3G product to market. Its solution was to combine C3G with a pharmaceutical standby called gelucire.

Gelucire is a mixture of mono, di, and triglycerides used to increase the bioavailability of various drugs. It’s a blend of fatty acids with extreme hydrophobicity and low density, making it an ideal compound/drug carrier.

So Biotest took pure C3G, each batch chemically harvested from an impressive amount of berries, and combined it with gelucire to make an extremely potent anthocyanin delivery system. It’s virtually impossible to ingest enough berry/casein shakes to approximate the dosage and effects of one serving of Indigo-3G.

However, IF you’ve got some blueberries or blackberries handy and you’re preparing a protein (casein-based) shake, blend them together to get the most out of those berries.

Biotest

References

REFERENCES

  1. Lang Y et al. Effects of Alpha-Casein on the Absorption of Blueberry Anthocyanins and Metabolites in Rat Plasma Based on Pharmacokinetic Analysis. J Agric Food Chem. 2021 Jun 9;69(22):6200-6213. PubMed.
  2. You Y et al. Cyanidin 3-glucoside attenuates high-fat and high-fructose diet-induced obesity by promoting the thermogenic capacity of brown adipose tissue. Journal of Functional Foods. 2018 Feb;41:62-71.
  3. Shi M et al. The effect of cyanidin-3-O-β-glucoside and peptides extracted from yoghurt on glucose uptake and gene expression in human primary skeletal muscle myotubes from obese and obese diabetic participants. Journal of Functional Food. 2018 Dec;51:55-64.
  4. Guo H et al. Cyanidin-3-O-β-glucoside regulates fatty acid metabolism via an AMP-activated protein kinase-dependent signaling pathway in human HepG2 cells. Lipids Health Dis. 2012 Jan 13;11:10. PubMed.
  5. Wei X et al. Cyanidin-3-O-β-glucoside improves obesity and triglyceride metabolism in KK-Ay mice by regulating lipoprotein lipase activity. J Sci Food Agric. 2011 Apr;91(6):1006-13. PubMed.
  6. Guo H et al. Cyanidin 3-glucoside attenuates obesity-associated insulin resistance and hepatic steatosis in high-fat diet-fed and db/db mice via the transcription factor FoxO1. J Nutr Biochem. 2012 Apr;23(4):349-60. PubMed.
  7. Sasaki R et al. **Cyanidin 3-glucoside ameliorates hyperglycemia and insulin sensitivity due to downregulation of retinol binding protein 4 expression in diabetic mice.**Biochem Pharmacol. 2007 Dec 3;74(11):1619-27. PubMed.
  8. Tsuda T et al. Anthocyanin enhances adipocytokine secretion and adipocyte-specific gene expression in isolated rat adipocytes. Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2004 Mar 26;316(1):149-57. PubMed.
  9. Guo H et al. **Cyanidin 3-glucoside protects 3T3-L1 adipocytes against H2O2- or TNF-alpha-induced insulin resistance by inhibiting c-Jun NH2-terminal kinase activation.**Biochem Pharmacol. 2008 Mar 15;75(6):1393-401. PubMed.
  10. Tsuda T et al. Microarray profiling of gene expression in human adipocytes in response to anthocyanins. Biochem Pharmacol. 2006 Apr 14;71(8):1184-97. PubMed.
  11. Tsuda T et al. Gene expression profile of isolated rat adipocytes treated with anthocyanins. Biochim Biophys Acta. 2005 Apr 15;1733(2-3):137-47. PubMed.
  12. Grace MH et al. Hypoglycemic activity of a novel anthocyanin-rich formulation from lowbush blueberry, Vaccinium angustifolium Aiton. Phytomedicine. 2009 May;16(5):406-15. PubMed.
  13. Tsuda T et al. Dietary cyanidin 3-O-beta-D-glucoside-rich purple corn color prevents obesity and ameliorates hyperglycemia in mice. J Nutr. 2003 Jul;133(7):2125-30. PubMed.
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