Eating berries could cut risk of Parkinson’s

Monday, February 14, 2011

WASHINGTON - A new study has suggested that those who eat berries stand lesser chances of developing Parkinson’s disease.

Berries, citrus fruits like oranges and chocolates contain compounds called flavanoids that apparently reduce the risk of Parkinson’s.

The study involved 49,281 men and 80,336 women. Researchers analyzed the association between flavonoid intakes and risk of developing Parkinson’s disease. They also analyzed consumption of five major sources of foods rich in flavonoids: tea, berries, apples, red wine and oranges or orange juice. The participants were followed for 20 to 22 years.

Results showed that in men, the top 20 percent who consumed the most flavonoids were about 40 percent less likely to develop Parkinson’s disease than the bottom 20 percent of male participants who consumed the least amount of flavonoids.

In women, there was no relationship between overall flavonoid consumption and developing Parkinson’s disease.

However, when sub-classes of flavonoids were examined, regular consumption of anthocyanins, which are mainly obtained from berries, were found to be associated with a lower risk of Parkinson’s disease in both men and women.

“Our findings suggest that flavonoids, specifically a group called anthocyanins, may have neuroprotective effects. If confirmed, flavonoids may be a natural and healthy way to reduce your risk of developing Parkinson’s disease,” said Xiang Gao at the Harvard School of Public Health in Boston.

The study was released today and will be presented at the American Academy of Neurology’s 63rd Annual Meeting in Honolulu April 9 to April 16, 2011. (ANI)

Filed under: Science and Technology

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