What is more delicious than a bowlful of beautiful berries? Strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, raspberries. Sweet, tart, and juicy, just thinking about them makes your mouth water.
Berries may be one of those rare foods that are incredibly decadent and delicious—and good for you, too.
A study published in Circulation
A study published in January 13, 2013 issue of the prestigious medical journal Circulation found that eating plenty of berries may help with heart health.
The study, conducted by scientists in Britain and the United States, reviewed data from 93,600 women ages 25 to 42 years of age who participated in the Nurses’ Health Study (NHS) II, begun in 1989. Over 18 years, the women in the study regularly reported a huge array of data about their dietary and other habits, as well as their health status.
In analyzing that mountain of data, scientists took a look at the health of women who ate blueberries and strawberries. They found that the women who ate the most blueberries and strawberries reduced their risk of heart attack by 32 percent, compared to the women who ate berries once a month or less. Now, the big berry eaters also ate more fruits and veggies, too, but the scientists looked deeper and found that the ones who ate the most berries had a lower risk of heart attack than other women who ate fruits and veggies but fewer berries.
Berries and PerioSciences?
You might think a report on the heart health benefits of eating in berries seems pretty distant from the subjects we normally discuss in this PerioSciences blog.
Here’s the connection: Berries, especially the ones with bright colors, contain a flavonoid called anthocyanin. The scientists who conducted the study believe that the anthocyanins are antioxidants and may have an anti-inflammatory effect that is beneficial to the heart. As stated in the Circulation article, “Specific flavonoids appear to improve endothelial function by exerting anti-inflammatory effects….” That is, the scientists connect the effects of anti-inflammatory compounds with improved function of the layer of cells that line the walls of blood vessels.
It’s the Antioxidants
PerioSciences has invested in extensive research on its antioxidants, phloretin and ferulic acid, demonstrating their effectiveness at neutralizing free radical molecules, which are associated with inflammation. Moreover, legions of medical and dental experts are convinced that inflammation—including inflammation that begins in the oral tissues with gingivitis and periodontitis—is a primary culprit in chronic, inflammatory diseases such as heart disease, arthritis, diabetes, and even Alzheimer’s and complications with fertility and pregnancy.
Our oral care products, AO ProVantage dental gel plus antioxidant toothpaste, AO ProToothpaste and AO ProRinse, deliver powerful, topical antioxidants directly to the oral tissues.
We would conclude that everyone should be enjoying as many berries as possible (along with other healthy fruits and veggies) to get antioxidants in their diet. Then, for maximum oral health—and to do something about those blueberry stains on your teeth—use PerioSciences oral care products for the benefit of antioxidants.