This nutrient in diet could prevent inflammation in older adults

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A recent study published in Molecular Nutrition & Food Research has shown that polyphenols, which are found in everyday foods, offer significant health benefits for older adults.

This research, carried out by a team from the University and other institutions, emphasizes the importance of these compounds in reducing inflammation and promoting healthy aging.

Polyphenols are natural compounds present in fruits and vegetables known for their antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. Acting like probiotics, these compounds interact with gut bacteria to produce beneficial substances known as postbiotics.

One of these postbiotics is indole 3-propionic acid (IPA), which is derived from the breakdown of the amino acid tryptophan by gut bacteria. IPA has powerful antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and neuroprotective qualities that contribute to gut health and overall well-being.

The study was led by Professor Cristina Andrés-Lacueva and involved over fifty volunteers aged 65 and above.

These participants followed a diet rich in polyphenols, including green tea, dark chocolate, and fruits such as apples, pomegranates, and blueberries, for eight weeks. The researchers monitored the levels of IPA in the blood of these volunteers.

The results were promising. A diet high in polyphenols significantly increased the levels of IPA in the blood. It also reduced inflammation and altered the composition of gut bacteria, particularly boosting the presence of bacteria from the Bacteroidales order.

However, it was noted that participants with kidney diseases did not experience the same benefits, likely due to differences in their gut microbiota.

Tomás Meroño, a co-first author of the study, highlighted the importance of strategies to promote IPA production because of its wide-ranging health benefits.

The study’s findings are particularly relevant for people with kidney diseases, who generally have lower levels of IPA. Low IPA levels are associated with a rapid decline in kidney function and chronic kidney disease.

By incorporating a diet rich in polyphenols, including specific fruits, green tea, and dark chocolate, older adults can enhance their gut bacteria’s ability to produce IPA. This increase in IPA could be crucial in delaying or preventing chronic diseases, thus improving the quality of life in the elderly.

This research offers valuable insights into how diet, particularly foods high in polyphenols, can positively affect the health of older adults.

It emphasizes the importance of making informed dietary choices to manage inflammation and promote healthy aging, suggesting that targeted nutritional strategies could significantly benefit the elderly.

For those interested in inflammation, there are other studies worth exploring. Some discuss the primary causes of inflammation in common bowel diseases, and how vitamin B might help fight COVID-19 and reduce inflammation.

Additionally, there are recent studies on new ways to halt excessive inflammation and foods that could cause inflammation.

The detailed findings of this research can be found in Molecular Nutrition & Food Research.

If you care about arthritis, please read studies about extra virgin olive oil for arthritis, and pomegranate: A natural treatment for rheumatoid arthritis.

For more information about arthritis, please see recent studies about how to live pain-free with arthritis, and results showing medical cannabis may help reduce arthritis pain, back pain.

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