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ANTHOCYANIN AND HASKAP: NATURE’S ANTI-INFLAMMATORY

Anthocyanins helps combat chronic inflammation which is thought to play a role in the development of many chronic diseases. Haskap is very rich in anthocyanins and as such Sweet Prairie Haskap is a natural source of anthocyanins.

Acute inflammation occurs as a response to injury, infection or toxins and is a natural part of our body’s defense system. The damaged tissues release chemical messengers which initiate increased blood flow and an influx of white blood cells into the affected area to protect and fight infection. This causes uncomfortable symptoms such as redness, heat and swelling which normally settle over a few hours or days. 

Chronic inflammation can last for months or years and occurs when the body perceives itself to be under ongoing attack. In this situation the immune system continues to produce chemical messengers, and white cells can start to attack healthy tissues and organs. Chronic inflammation can occur in response to a variety of triggers such as toxins from cigarettes smoke, or obesity, when excessive visceral fat cells (the fat cells that surround organs in the abdomen) are viewed by the body as a threat. Experts believe chronic inflammation plays a role in the development of many chronic diseases including heart disease, type 2 diabetes, neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer’s disease and even excema.

It is thought that chronic inflammation can be reduced by modifying lifestyle factors such as weight, diet and exercise. Research on dietary anthocyanins has suggested that they may help protect against conditions associated with chronic inflammation by reducing the production of chemical messengers.

One study looked at 2,375 American adults using food frequency questionnaires to assess their intake of dietary flavonoids including anthocyanins. The researchers calculated an inflammation score for each participant based on 12 inflammatory biomarkers. An anthocyanin intake of 32mg per day was associated with a 73% lower inflammation score. The authors suggested that the anti-inflammatory effect of anthocyanins may contribute to the reduction of risk in several age-related chronic conditions.

Higher dietary anthocyanin and flavonol intakes are associated with anti-inflammatory effects in a population of US adults. 

Cassidy A, Rogers G, Peterson JJ, Dwyer JT, Lin H, Jacques PF. Am J Clin Nutr. 2015 Jul;102(1):172-81.

HASKAP RESEARCH

Canadian researchers have demonstrated that in laboratory experiments Haskap berry extracts significantly inhibited the expression of several major chemical messengers involved in the development of chronic inflammation. They also showed that the anti-inflammatory effect of Haskap was comparable to diclofenac, a commonly used non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medication.  Sweet Prairie Haskap is rich in anthocyanins and has been rigorously tested at the University of Saskatchewan which is a global leader in the development of this powerful plant.

Rupasinghe, H.P.V., M.A. Boehm, S. Sekhon-Loodu, I. Parmar, B. Bors, A.R. Jamieson. 2015. Anti-inflammatory activity of haskap (Lonicera caerulea L.) cultivars is dependent on their polyphenol content. Biomolecules. 5:1079-1098.

Rupasinghe HPV, Arumuggam N, Amararathna M, De Silva ABKH. (2018) The potential health benefits of haskap (Lonicera caerulea L.): Role of cyanidin-3-O-glucoside. Journal of Functional Foods. 44. 24-39. 10.1016/j.jff.2018.02.023.

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