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  • From: Lawrence London <>
  • To: nafex mailing list at ibiblio <>
  • Subject: [nafex] Fwd: Lowering the Risk of Infection with Grapes
  • Date: Wed, 23 Mar 2016 09:35:26 -0400

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: ARS News Service <>
Date: Wed, Mar 23, 2016 at 8:55 AM
Subject: Lowering the Risk of Infection with Grapes
To: ARS News subscriber <>


ARS News Service
Agricultural Research Service, USDA
--View this report online, plus photos and related stories, at
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*Read the magazine story
<> to find out more. *

[image: Purple, red and green grapes. Link to photo information]
Consuming grapes may help reduce infection risk in obese people, ARS
research suggests. * Click the image for more information about it.*

[image: For further reading]

- Connecting Overeating, Emotions and Cognitive Control in Young Children

- Brain Images Focus on Stress Eaters' Neurological Response to Comfort
Foods <>

- Scientists Explore Brain, Cortisol, and Weight Loss Connections

Lowering the Risk of Infection with Grapes

By Sandra Avant <>
March 23, 2016

Eating grapes may help obese people decrease certain types of fats in their
blood that are linked to heart disease and lower their risk of infection,
according to a U.S. Department of Agriculture
<> (USDA) study.

Susan Zunino
<>, a
molecular biologist with the Agricultural Research Service’s (ARS) Western
Human Nutrition Research Center
<> (WHNRC)
in Davis, California, studies phytochemicals—natural compounds found in
fruits such as grapes and strawberries. Her recent work suggests that
phytochemicals from grapes may have a positive effect on the immune system
of obese individuals.

Hospital and clinic documentation of viral and bacterial infection has
shown that obese people are at a much higher risk for developing infections
after surgery, according to Zunino. About 35 percent of Americans are
obese, which puts them at a higher risk of developing heart disease,
diabetes, and bacterial and viral infections.

In the study, obese participants drank either a mixture of water and grape
powder made from freeze-dried table grapes or a placebo twice a day for
three weeks. The two groups switched to the opposite mixture for the next
three weeks.

Blood samples were analyzed to measure the effects of grapes on blood
lipids (fats), blood markers of inflammation and cells of the immune system
during the study. Compared with the placebo group, the grape powder group
had reduced plasma concentrations of low-density lipoprotein (LDL), known
as “bad” cholesterol, which is associated with heart disease.

When scientists stimulated immune cells from blood with a bacterial
component, they found an increase in the production of
proteins—cytokines—that are instrumental in fighting off infections. In
previous research, Zunino discovered that one of the same cytokine proteins
was produced when obese individuals consumed strawberry powder.

However, obesity leads to more inflammation in the body, according to
Zunino. Therefore, more studies are needed to find out if the increase in
cytokine production, after grapes and strawberries are eaten, contributes
to more inflammation or is beneficial in reducing infections.

ARS is USDA’s principal intramural scientific research agency.

Read more <> about this
work in the March 2016 issue of *AgResearch*.


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Lawrence F. London

  • [nafex] Fwd: Lowering the Risk of Infection with Grapes, Lawrence London, 03/23/2016

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