Anthocyanins, the pigment that gives purple fruits and vegetables their color, have been linked to a number of health benefits, including a decreased risk of heart disease and cancer.
More proof that purple is a good color in your diet comes from some new research published in Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry.
Anthocyanins in plants may contain qualities that might lower the risk of type 2 diabetes.
A University of Turku analysis of earlier studies on anthocyanins, the antioxidant that gives some fruits, vegetables, and roots their red, purple, and blue pigments, revealed that they might reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes depending on a number of factors.
Energy metabolism may be impacted by anthocyanins, the composition of the gut microbiome, levels of inflammation, and how specific nutrients get absorbed.
If anthocyanins are “acylated,” or structured in such a way that a group of atoms known as an “acyl group” is added to the sugar molecule, they are especially effective at reducing the risk of type 2 diabetes.
Postdoctoral researcher Kang Chen shared via University of Turku News that “In addition to changing chemical and physical properties, the acylation affects how the anthocyanins are absorbed and metabolized.”
The researchers’ findings led them to conclude that acylated anthocyanins may help strengthen the intestinal barrier, enabling greater absorption of certain nutrients and improved control of blood sugar and cholesterol.
The following naturally contain the highest concentration of acylated anthocyanins:
– Purple potatoes
– Purple sweet potatoes,
– Purple cabbage,
– Purple carrots.
On the other hand, the majority of the anthocyanins in blueberries and mulberries are not acylated but that’s not to say these yummy fruits don’t have other health benefits.
Chen goes on to say that “The latest research has shown that the acylated and non acylated anthocyanins can impact type 2 diabetes in different ways.”
At the end of the day, there are many different factors that affect our chance of developing diabetes.
It’s crucial to adopt a multidimensional strategy that includes exercise, stress management, enough sleep, and more if you want to reduce your risks but becoming a fan of purple foods is definitely a good start.