We evaluated the short-term effects of a flavanol-rich cocoa (FRC) on lipid profile and selected oxidative stress biomarkers such as oxidized low-density lipoprotein (oxLDL), glutathione (GSH), and F2-isoprostane. We also assessed whether FRC modulates plasma levels of polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA) in healthy individuals. The subjects (n=48) were randomly assigned to a low-cocoa group (1 g/d; ~55 mg flavanols) (n=16), middle-cocoa group (2 g/d; ~110 mg flavanols) (n=16), or a high-cocoa group (4 g/d; ~220 mg flavanols) (n=16). The samples were collected at baseline, at 1, 2, and 4 h post initial consumption of FRC, and after 4 weeks of FRC supplementation. The peak plasma concentration of (−)-epicatechin metabolites reached a maximum level (578±61 nM; P<.05) at 2 h after ingestion of FRC. After 4 weeks, total cholesterol (−12.37±6.63; P<.0001), triglycerides (−3.81±2.45; P<.0001), plasma LDL (−14.98±6.77; P<.0001), and oxLDL (−95.61±41.69; P<.0001) decreased in the high-cocoa group, compared with baseline. We also found that plasma high-density lipoprotein (HDL) (+3.37±2.06; P<.0001) concentrations increased significantly in the same group. Total GSH significantly increased in all FRC-treated groups (+209.73±146.8; P<.0001), while urinary F2-isoprostane levels decreased in the middle- (−0.73±0.16; P<.0001) and high-cocoa (−1.62±0.61; P<.0001) groups. At the end of the four-week study, a significant reduction of arachidonic acid (AA)/eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) ratio was observed in the low-(−2.62±2.93; P=.003), middle- (−5.24±2.75; P<.0001) and high-cocoa (−7.76±4.96; P<.0001) groups, compared with baseline. Despite the small sample size used in this study, these data extend previous clinical and experimental studies, providing new insights into the health benefits of cocoa flavanols.
|Digital Object Identifier (DOI):||10.1016/j.jnutbio.2018.07.011|
|Codice identificativo Scopus:||2-s2.0-85052886046|
|Titolo:||Short-term supplementation with flavanol-rich cocoa improves lipid profile, antioxidant status and positively influences the AA/EPA ratio in healthy subjects|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||1.1 Articolo in rivista|