Home' Australian Pharmacist : Australian Pharmacist October 2012 Contents Australian Pharmacist October 2012 I ©Pharmaceutical Society of Australia Ltd. 825
consume these oils in a better ratio than
generally present in our Western diet so that
the O6Os are reduced relative to the O3Os.5
The health bene ts of O3O are many and
varied, and include a crucial need in brain
cognitive function, memory, performance
and behaviour, reduction of the risk of heart
disease, cancer and rheumatoid arthritis by
anti-in ammatory mechanisms, increase of
HDL, decrease of triglycerides, cholesterol,
hypertension levels, symptoms of lupus,
and increase of body calcium levels.6
Phew! Why would anybody not be taking an
O3O-rich food or supplement?
Mains -- Eat your greens,
they're good for you.
My Daily Mail (DM) tablet app continually
spreads the good news to its readers that
green leafy vegetables of all kinds contain
nitrate which could be metabolised by
oral bacteria to boost levels of nitric
oxide (NO), as well as sinigrin from the
brassicas which yields the metabolite
allyl-isothiocyanate, thought to be active
in targeting colon tumour cells.7 Not so
long ago, it was beetroot making the
news as a source of NO, which had useful
e ects on blood pressure.8 At that time
I asked whether one should ask, 'If it is
such a simple mechanism operating, then
why not bypass consumption of beetroot
juice with the complications of acquiring
beetroot and then juicing it, by just
drinking a dilute solution of inorganic
nitrate?' and concluded that potassium had
previously been implicated in bene cial
e ects on hypertension and that perhaps
other beetroot constituents may add to
the quality of blood pressure response.
A similar case can be made for consuming
green vegetables as a source of nitrate
and other valuable active constituents
including vitamin K and the glucosinolates.
These latter include sinigrin and some
120 other related substances. Enzymic
hydrolysis of sinigrin after its release from
the protection of plant tissue yields glucose
and allyl-isothiocyanate (AITC).
AITC is the pungent, lachrymatory mustard
oil responsible for the distinctive avour
of mustard, wasabi and other cruciferous
plants. It does possess useful biological
properties including cancer inhibition.
However, sulfophorane, a closely related
sulphoxide analog of AITC and containing
the typical ITC group, appears to be more
active by 'suppression of cytochrome
P450 enzymes, induction of apoptotic
pathways, suppression of cell cycle
progression, inhibition of angiogenesis and
anti-in ammatory activity'.9 Isothiocyanates
do appear to have a number of useful
properties which may be applicable in the
future,10 but in the meantime, eat your
cruciferous greens! I'm giving you a free
choice of extras such as meat, sh or other
vegetables in this course, but do please
include broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cabbage
or cauli ower!
Sweets -- two fruit? Is that all?
The '2 + 5' campaign to introduce fruit and
vegetables into our diet is going reasonably
well, but admittedly many nd it di cult to
reach the magic numbers every day.
One of my current supplements is
cranberry extract, 2 x '17000' (equivalent
to 17 g fresh fruit) capsules a day, which I
take to bene t my prostate health. I have
previously taken saw palmetto and/or other
prostate-supporting herbs such as stinging
nettle and the like, but since reading of
cranberry bene ts have done the switch
for while. Yes, like many males of my age,
I get my regular prostate checks, but do
su er episodes of mild benign prostate
hyperplasia (BPH) on occasion. I have not
maintained a diary of the events as such,
but feel that there is a strong link to diet,
for example too much fat or red meat
So, to the North American cranberry --
Vaccinium macrocarpon! I use the dried
sweetened product in my regular porridge,
as well as taking the supplement extract.
There is increasingly strong evidence that
many fruits such as cranberry, blueberry,
raspberry and strawberry, all rich in
polyphenols, are extremely bene cial in
health generally and probably in cancer
inhibition speci cally.11
Cranberry may ameliorate lower
urinary tract symptoms, a common
condition in older men, independent
of BPH or C-reactive protein level.9
Vidlar and co-workers found that dried
powdered cranberries (1,500 mg per
day) vs non-cranberry controls showed
improvement in International Prostate
Symptom Scores, including voiding
parameters and lower total PSA level
(on day 180 of the 6 month study).12
Cranberry certainly warrants more
research on its anticancer properties and
the mechanisms involved. Its action in
stimulating apoptosis of human prostate
cancer cells has been described.13
As always, such evidence does not say that
all cancer will be prevented but chances
are that inhibitory actions may be useful
in maintaining good general health.
Whenever the opportunity arises to indulge
in fresh berry fruit, by purchase or even
when attending that health conference
or hotel breakfast bar, tuck in and enjoy
the bene ts!
Chia, brassica greens and berry fruit are all
good examples of food as medicine, and
certainly complement our potluck this
1. Antarctic and Southern Ocean Coalition. Krill conservation. At:
2. Chiatrition Chia Seed Unison Int'l Co. History of Chia. At: www.
3. Chia seeds, Nutritional Information. Chia seeds. At: www.
4. Wikipedia. Salvia hispanica. At: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/
5. Polunin M. Healing foods. London: Dorling Kindersely; 1997.
6. University of Maryland Medical Center. Omega-3 fatty acids. At:
7. Daily Mail. So that's what makes Popeye strong! Spinach
found to boost key protein in muscles. At: www.dailymail.
8. Longmore B. Beetroot for better health. Aus Pharm
9. Juge N, Mithen RF, Traka M. Molecular basis for
chemoprevention by sulforaphane: a comprehensive review.
10. Linus Pauling Institute, Micronutrients Information Center,
Oregon State University. Isothiocyanates. At: http://lpi.
11. Seeram NP, Adams LS, Zhang YJ, et al. Blackberry, black
raspberry, blue berry, cranberry, red raspberry, and strawberry
extracts inhibit growth and stimulate apoptosis of human cell
lines in vitro. J Agri Food Chem 2006;54(25):9329--39.
12. Vidlar A, Vostalova J, Ulrichova J, et al. The effectiveness of
dried cranberries (Vaccinium macrocarpon) in men with lower
urinary tract symptoms. Br J Nutr 2010;104(8):1181--9.
13. MacLean MA, Scott BE, Deziel BA, et al. North American
cranberry (Vaccinium macrocarpon) stimulates apoptopic
pathways in DU 145Human prostate cancer cells in vitro. Nutr
'There is increasingly
strong evidence that
many fruits such as
strawberry, all rich
in polyphenols, are
extremely beneficial in
health generally and
probably in cancer
Links Archive Australian Pharmacist September 2012 Australian Pharmacist November 2012 Navigation Previous Page Next Page