Potential complementarity of high-flavanol cocoa powder and spirulina for health protection

Oasis of Hope Hospital, Tijuana, Mexico.
Medical Hypotheses (Impact Factor: 1.07). 08/2009; 74(2):370-3. DOI: 10.1016/j.mehy.2008.09.060
Source: PubMed


Recent studies show that ingestion of flavanol-rich cocoa powder provokes increased endothelial production of nitric oxide - an effect likely mediated by epicatchin - and thus may have considerable potential for promoting vascular health. The Kuna Indians of Panama, who regularly consume large amounts of flavanol-rich cocoa, are virtually free of hypertension and stroke, even though they salt their food. Of potentially complementary merit is the cyanobacterium spirulina, which has been used as a food in certain cultures. Spirulina is exceptionally rich in phycocyanobilin (PCB), which recently has been shown to act as a potent inhibitor of NADPH oxidase; this effect likely rationalizes the broad range of anti-inflammatory, cytoprotective, and anti-atherosclerotic effects which orally administered spirulina has achieved in rodent studies. In light of the central pathogenic role which NADPH oxidase-derived oxidant stress plays in a vast range of disorders, spirulina or PCB-enriched spirulina extracts may have remarkable potential for preserving and restoring health. Joint administration of flavanol-rich cocoa powder and spirulina may have particular merit, inasmuch as cocoa can mask the somewhat disagreeable flavor and odor of spirulina, whereas the antioxidant impact of spirulina could be expected to amplify the bioactivity of the nitric oxide evoked by cocoa flavanols in inflamed endothelium. Moreover, there is reason to suspect that, by optimizing cerebrovascular perfusion while quelling cerebral oxidant stress, cocoa powder and spirulina could collaborate in prevention of senile dementia. Thus, food products featuring ample amounts of both high-flavanol cocoa powder and spirulina may have considerable potential for health promotion, and merit evaluation in rodent studies and clinical trials.

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    • "It was observed that as level of guar gum increased, sensory score for flavour also increased but has minor effect and similar results were found when biscuit was fortified with guar gum (Sudha et al. 2007b) and the major effect was of spirulina powder as with increase in its amount, sensory score for flavour of biscuit decreased remarkably. Flavour score decreases with increase in level of spirulina powder as it has a foul odour, and a flavour that most find unappealing and so its addition to biscuit counteracts its original flavour (McCarty et al. 2010). Similarly, Dubey and Kumari (2011) reported that flavour score of spirulina enriched yoghurt decreased with the increasing level of spirulina. "
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    ABSTRACT: Biscuits are popular and convenient food products due to their ready to eat nature. Biscuits were prepared from sorghum and whole wheat flour with the addition of spirulina (Spirulina platensis) powder to produce high fibre and high protein biscuit. Levels of ingredients in biscuits such as spirulina powder, sorghum flour and guar gum were optimized using response surface methodology (RSM) for its sensory, textural and antioxidant attributes. Sensory attributes as colour intensity (R2 = 0.89, P < 0.0001), flavor (R2 = 0.98, P < 0.0001), sweetness (R2 = 0.97, P < 0.0001), graininess (R2 = 0.99, P < 0.0001), and crispiness (R2 = 0.94, P < 0.0001), textural attributes as hardness (R2 = 0.95, P < 0.0001) and fracturability (R2 = 0.96, P < 0.0001), antioxidant activity as DPPH inhibition (R2 = 0.87, P < 0.0001) and antioxidant activity as ABTS inhibition (R2 = 0.98, P < 0.0001) were significantly related to processing parameters of biscuit. Rheological characteristics (TPA and extensograph) of biscuit dough were measured. Studies indicated that amongst all the processing parameters, the composition of spirulina powder and sorghum flour was found to have significant effect on the responses.
    Journal of Food Science and Technology -Mysore- 08/2013; 52(3). DOI:10.1007/s13197-013-1139-z · 2.20 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The blue green algae spirulina has been used by mankind as food and drug since ages. However, the last few decades have witnessed the unprecedented momentum in research on nutritional and medicinal potency of this unicellular alga. It has emerged as an undisputed medical food with the discovery and validation of a litany of health benefits ranging from antioxidant, anti-inflammation, hypolipemic, antithrombotic, anti-diabetic, anticancer, immunestimulatory, antimicrobial, cardioprotective, hepatoprotective, antianaemic, neuroprotective, tissue engineering to aquaculture and livestock feed. Many hitherto unknown pharmacological properties are coming forth and myriad research projects are revolving around this miraculous cyanobacterium. Safety regulations recommend its inclusion in nutritional regimen for proofing body against ailments and augmenting vitality. Advances in effective cultivation, drying, extraction and purification techniques have been summarized. This review outlines the recent progresses and therapeutic possibilities of this spirulina.
    Current Trends in Biotechnology and Pharmacy 04/2013; 7(2):696-707.
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    ABSTRACT: Objectives: The object of this study is to observe the cognition and motor function recovery effects of Joojakwhan (JJW), a traditional Korean poly-herbal formula for treating various neuropsychiatric diseases such as dementia, for the mildly stroke rats, with 60 minutes of reperfusion transient middle cerebral artery occlusion (tMCAO). Methods: In the present study, 125, 250 and 500 mg/kg of JJW were orally administered, once per day for 10 continuous days 2 hours after the tMCAO. The body weight changes, infarct sizes under 2% 2, 3, 5-triphenyl tetrazolium chloride (TTC) stain, sensorimotor functions and cognitive motor behavior tests were serially monitored with cerebral caspase-3 and cleaved poly (ADP-ribose) polymerase (PARP)-immunoreactivities and histopathological changes. The effects of tMCAO on sensorimotor functions were evaluated by using of limb placing and body-swing tests, and the cognitive motor behaviors were also observed with water maze tests. Results: From the results of tMCAO, with marked decreases of body weights, disorders of sensorimotor functions increases the limb placing test scores, and decrease the numbers and percentages of body swings to the ipsilateral sides. The cognitive motor behaviors increases the distances and time to reach the escape platform which included the inhibitions of the decreases with repeated trials that were observed with focal cerebral cortex infarct volumes. In addition, the marked increases of the atrophy, numbers of degeneration, caspase-3- and PARP-immunoreactive cells around peri-infarct ipsilateral cerebral cortex were also observed in tMCAO controls when compared with the sham control rats, respectively. Conclusions: The results obtained from this study suggest that oral administrations of JJW indicate obvious cognitions and motor function recoveries of the rats with tMCAO, mild strokes, which are mediated by neuro-protective effects through known antioxidant effects of components.
    12/2013; 24(4). DOI:10.7231/jon.2013.24.4.419
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