Antioxidant Compound May Protect Against Liver Disease
What do celery, kiwi and papaya have in common? They’re all delicious, loaded with nutrients, and they all contain a compound that may help protect the liver, finds a study published in The FASEB Journal.
Researchers from the University of Colorado investigated pyrroloquinoline quinone (PQQ), an antioxidant found in these three foods, and how it may affect the development of nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD). NAFLD is a liver condition that affects 20-30% of adults in the United States. Excess fat in the liver can increase risk of cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes and liver cancer.
We know that a mother’s diet during pregnancy greatly affects her child’s health, and that obese mothers’ newborns have a greater chance of developing NAFLD down the line. In this study, obese mice were fed an unhealthy, typical American diet during pregnancy and lactation. When PPQ was added to the diet, offspring’s livers were protected from inflammation, fatty liver, and damage that could lead to NAFLD later in life. If these results translate to humans, it could mean that eating more foods with this powerful antioxidant during pregnancy may help keep children’s livers healthy as they grow up.
More research is needed to say for sure how this antioxidant works, but it’s never a bad idea to add more healthy foods to your diet in place of the less healthy stuff. Other top sources of PPQ include parsley, spinach, green peppers, tofu, and green tea.
Try our Bowl of Bliss made with fresh papaya, quinoa and the DOLE® Chopped Sesame Asian Kit.
Published May 1, 2017