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Study: Raisins may protect against cavities and gum disease

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  • Study: Raisins may protect against cavities and gum disease

    By Sue Mueller
    Jun 8, 2005

    Being sweet and sticky, raisins do not necessarily pose any harm to your teeth. Actually, phytochemicals in raisins might help fight tooth decay and protect your oral or dental health, according to a study presented Wednesday at the 105th General Meeting of the American Society for Microbiology in Atlanta.

    "Our laboratory analyses showed that phytochemicals in this popular snack food suppress the growth of several species of oral bacteria associated with caries and gum disease," said Dr. Christine D. Wu, lead author of the study.

    Dr. Wu and her colleagues conducted this study at the University of Illinois at Chicago College of Dentistry.

    In the study, Dr. Wu's team identified five compounds in Thompson seedless raisins: oleanolic acid, oleanolic aldehyde, betulin, betulinic acid, and 5-(hydroxymethyl)-2-furfural.

    It was found that oleanolic acid inhibited growth of two species of oral bacteria: Streptococcus mutans, which causes cavities, and Porphyromonas gingivalis, which causes periodontal disease.

    In addition, the phytochemical prevents bacteria from adhering to the surfaces of the teeth. Adherence is crucial for the bacteria to form plaque on the teeth, the sticky biofilm consisting of oral bacteria that accumulates on teeth. After a sugary meal, these bacteria release acids that erode the tooth enamel.

    The results counter a longstanding public perception that raisins promote cavities, according to Dr. Wu.

    "Raisins are perceived as sweet and sticky, and any food that contains sugar and is sticky is assumed to cause cavities," Wu said. "But our study suggests the contrary. Phytochemicals in raisins may benefit oral health by fighting bacteria that cause cavities and gum disease."

    The present study was funded by the California Raisin Marketing Board.


    http://www.foodconsumer.org/777/8/St..._disease.shtml
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  • #2
    Raisins fight oral bacteria

    7-Jun-2005
    Contact: Sharon Butler
    [email protected]
    312-355-2522
    University of Illinois at Chicago

    Compounds found in raisins fight bacteria in the mouth that cause cavities and gum disease, according to researchers at the University of Illinois at Chicago.


    "Our laboratory analyses showed that phytochemicals in this popular snack food suppressed the growth of oral bacteria associated with caries and gum disease," said Christine Wu, professor and associate dean for research at the UIC College of Dentistry and lead author of the study. Phytochemicals are compounds found in higher plants.

    The data were presented today at the annual meeting of the American Society for Microbiology in Atlanta.

    Wu and her co-workers performed routine chemical analyses to identify five phytochemicals in Thompson seedless raisins: oleanolic acid, oleanolic aldehyde, betulin, betulinic acid and 5-(hydroxymethyl)-2-furfural.

    Oleanolic acid, oleanolic aldehyde, and 5-(hydroxymethyl)-2-furfural inhibited the growth of two species of oral bacteria: Streptococcus mutans, which causes cavities, and Porphyromonas gingivalis, which causes periodontal disease. The compounds were effective against the bacteria at concentrations ranging from about 200 to 1,000 micrograms per milliliter.

    Betulin and betulinic acid were less effective, requiring much higher concentrations for similar antimicrobial activity.

    At a concentration of 31 micrograms per milliliter, oleanolic acid also blocked S. mutans adherence to surfaces. Adherence is crucial for the bacteria to form dental plaque, the sticky biofilm that accumulates on teeth. After a sugary meal, these bacteria release acids that erode the tooth enamel.

    Wu said that the findings counter a longstanding public perception that raisins promote cavities.

    "Raisins are perceived as sweet and sticky, and any food that contains sugar and is sticky is assumed to cause cavities," Wu said. "But our study suggests the contrary. Phytochemicals in raisins may benefit oral health by fighting bacteria that cause cavities and gum disease."

    "Moreover, raisins contain mainly fructose and glucose, not sucrose, the main culprit in oral disease."

    In an earlier unpublished study, Wu's collaborator Shahrbanoo Fadavi, a pediatric dentist at UIC, found that adding raisins alone to bran cereal did not increase the acidity of dental plaque. Raisin bran cereal with added sugar, however, did raise acidity levels.

    "Foods that are sticky do not necessarily cause tooth decay. It is mainly the added sugar, the sucrose, that contributes to the problem," Wu said.



    The present investigation was funded by the California Raisin Marketing Board.

    Wu's main collaborator in the study was A. Douglas Kinghorn, an adjunct professor in the UIC College of Pharmacy. Other UIC faculty involved in the work were Baoning Su, in the College of Pharmacy, and Jose Rivero-Cruz and Min Zhu in the College of Dentistry.

    UIC ranks among the nation's top 50 universities in federal research funding and is Chicago's largest university with 25,000 students, 12,000 faculty and staff, 15 colleges and the state's major public medical center. A hallmark of the campus is the Great Cities Commitment, through which UIC faculty, students and staff engage with community, corporate, foundation and government partners in hundreds of programs to improve the quality of life in metropolitan areas around the world. For more information about UIC, visit www.uic.edu.

    http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releas...-rfo060705.php
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    • #3
      Raisins may fight cavities and gum disease - study

      WASHINGTON, June 8 (Reuters) - They may be sweet and sticky but raisins contain compounds that suppress bacteria responsible for cavities and gum disease, U.S. researchers said on Wednesday.

      While the researchers have not shown that people who eat raisins have healthier mouths, they identified five compounds known as phytochemicals in raisins that can be beneficial for teeth and gums.

      "Raisins are perceived as sweet and sticky and any food that contains sugar and is sticky is assumed to cause cavities," Christine Wu of the University of Illinois at Chicago College of Dentistry said in a statement.

      "But our study suggests the contrary. Phytochemicals in raisins may benefit oral health by fighting bacteria that cause cavities and gum disease," said Wu, whose work was funded by the California Raisin Marketing Board.

      "Foods that are sticky do not necessarily cause tooth decay; it is mainly the added sugar (sucrose) that contributes to the problem."

      Wu's team found five compounds in Thompson seedless raisins that might help make teeth and gums healthier -- oleanolic acid, oleanolic aldehyde, betulin, betulinic acid and 5-(hydroxymethyl)-2-furfural.

      All are phytochemicals -- antioxidants found in plants, Wu told a meeting of the American Society for Microbiology in Atlanta.

      Oleanolic acid slowed growth of a bacteria that causes cavities and another that causes periodontal disease. The acid also stopped bacteria from sticking to surfaces, which prevents them from forming plaque.

      http://www.alertnet.org/thenews/newsdesk/N08520578.htm
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      • #4
        further benefits of raisins, grapes, wine...

        Sour grapes clean up

        24 July 2004
        From New Scientist Print Edition
        Barry Fox

        Surplus or waste wine and poor-quality wine made from sour grapes can all be turned into efficient and eco-friendly disinfectants, says a research team working at Oregon State University (WO 2004/50819).

        The trick is to lace the junk wine with common salt and sulphur dioxide. In tests the patented mix was much better at killing food-borne bacteria on kitchen surfaces than conventional disinfectants containing ammonia or hypochlorite. The team says this is because bacteria have become resistant to the chemicals in conventional disinfectant.

        http://www.newscientist.com/article....mg18324574.200
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        • #5
          Red wine extract gives fruit a new lease of lifehttp://www.newscientist.com/article....mg17723761.800
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          • #6
            Grape juice may keep arteries clear

            If you've been toasting to good health with purple grape juice, you may be onto something.

            The substances in the grapes called flavonoids have been proven capable of keeping your arteries free of disease-causing plaque.

            Now, a new study says the lip-staining liquid also has the ability to increase the antioxidants in your body while decreasing the level of free radicals. Antioxidants are vitamins like C, E and A that trap free radicals, which are potentially destructive molecules.

            "We know purple grape juice inhibits clotting," which helps keep arteries free and clear, says Dr Jane Freedman, the study's lead author.

            But the flavonoids, which give the juice its purple colour, also "reduce production of the free radicals, increase production of nitric oxide, which inhibits clot formation, reduce the size of clots and inhibit platelet activity," adds study co-author John Folts.

            The 20 people enrolled in the study each drank about two cups of juice a day for 14 days and were then found to have significantly decreased platelet activity. Platelets are the culprits that can turn sticky, clog up the arteries and lead to heart disease.

            In addition, the study participants' levels of nitric oxide production in the blood, the substance that keeps the arteries expanded, increased by 70 percent, researchers say. White grape juice, which was used as a control, did not yield the same results.

            "The 'antioxidant protective' effect we see with the grape juice is new information that, when added to what we already knew about grape juice's other benefits, helps us better understand the mechanism by which grape juice works in the body," says Freedman.

            The study, funded by the National Institutes of Health and by an unrestricted grant from Welch Foods, Inc., appears in the latest issue of Circulation.

            What to do

            If you're looking for this benefit, don't think that a pill is as good as whole food. "Taking a pill that has a bunch of flavonoids in it, unless it's been studied and shown to have biological properties . . . could be harmful," says Freedman.

            If you want the benefits of the purple grape, Freedman suggests, "whole foods are probably better than a pill, and you'd be better off drinking the juice."

            Keeping older siblings happy while you nurse

            Here's a way to keep older siblings out of trouble when you are nursing or feeding an infant. Buy a plastic lunch box for each older brother/sister and fill it the night before with crackers, grapes, raisins, etc., and the thermos with non-red juice. Each time the baby awakens, have everyone bring their treat (lunch) box to the feeding room and settle in. Reading their favorite stories will add to the fun.

            Foods to ward off cancer

            An apple a day may keep the doctor away, but if you're concerned about cancer, eat grapefruit and tomatoes.

            Researchers at Texas A&M University says these fruits have high levels of lycopene - a nutrient that helps fight prostate, breast and cervical cancers. Lycopene is a powerful antioxidant that prevents the formation of "free radicals." (These steal oxygen from healthy cells, and may eventually trigger cancer.)

            Tomatoes are the best source of lycopene, but red grapefruit is a close second. Grapefruit also contains other antioxidants, including vitamin C.

            Here's a hint: the redder the flesh in a ruby grapefruit, the more lycopene it contains.

            Key benefits of grapes

            Both red and black grapes contain powerful antioxidants and resveratrol, which helps to prevent both the narrowing and hardening of the arteries. Ellagic acid, which has anti-cancer properties, is also contained in grapes. They do, however, have a very high sugar content.

            How much grapes should you eat?

            Grapes have many health benefits, but have a high sugar content and should therefore be eaten in moderation.

            Maximising the benefits of grapes

            Grapes are a good source of potassium.

            Nutritional values of grapes

            Glycaemic Index mediumPer 100g

            Calories 60
            Carbohydrate 15 g
            Starch 0
            Sugars 15 g
            Protein <1g
            Fat <1 g

            http://www.health24.com/dietnfood/He...5-18-19-35.asp
            Last edited by abdulhakeem; 09-06-05, 02:56 PM.
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            • #7
              Juice From Purple Grapes Inhibit Platelet Function and Enhance Nitric Oxide Release

              Jane E. Freedman, MD; Crawford Parker, III, MD; Liqing Li, MS; Jacob A. Perlman; Balz Frei, PhD; Vadim Ivanov, PhD; Leslie R. Deak, BS; Mark D. Iafrati, MD; John D. Folts, PhD

              From the Departments of Pharmacology and Medicine, Georgetown University Medical Center, Washington, DC (J.E.F., C.P., L.L., J.A.P., L.R.D.); Linus Pauling Institute, Corvallis, Ore (B.F., V.I.); Uniformed Services University of Health Sciences, Bethesda, Md (M.D.I.); and the University of Wisconsin, Madison (J.D.F.).


              Correspondence to Dr Jane E. Freedman, Med-Dent Building, Room NE 403, Georgetown University Medical Center, 3900 Reservoir Rd NW, Washington, DC 20007. E-mail [email protected]

              BackgroundMethods and ResultsP<0.007 and PPP<0.05). Last, incubation of platelets with select flavonoid fractions isolated from PGJ consistently attenuated superoxide levels but had variable effects on whole-blood aggregation, platelet aggregation, and NO release. Conclusionshttp://circ.ahajournals.org/cgi/cont...ct/103/23/2792
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              • #8
                Wine making waste: a natural weapon to beat bacteria

                20 Aug 2004

                Grape pomace extract can be used as an effective anti- microbial agent to destroy pathogens and help preserve food, according to new research by Turkish scientists published in the Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture.

                Grape pomace

                Pomace consists of grape seeds, skin and stems, and is a rich source of polyphenols. Phenolic substances are known to reduce the risk of heart disease and cancer by inhibiting human low-density lipoproteins. Pomace is already used as an important bi-product of winemaking in the production of foods such as vinegar and molasses.

                Bacterial tests

                Pomace from the most popular Turkish grape cultivars, Kalecik karas and Emir, was collected and tested against 14 types of common bacteria, including Escherichia coli and Staphylococcus aureus species, by Osman Sagdic and his team at Erciyes University, Turkey. The grape pomace extracts gave effective anti-bacterial results when tested on all bacteria species at a concentration of five per cent, although the effects varied according to concentration, method and cultivars used.

                Natural preservatives

                "The extracts can be used in food formulations to protect food against spoilage bacteria. People prefer natural preservatives in the place of synthetic counterparts in food", says researcher Dr. Sagdic.

                "The world is always ready for better and more natural food preservatives. What we need to do now is to find a suitable food to put it in. The appearance and taste of the final product must be acceptable to the consumers", says Dr. Yiu-Wai Chu, Biotechnology Group, Society of Chemical Industry.

                Article: "Antibacterial activities and total phenolic contents of grape pomace extracts," Gulcan Ozkan, Osman Sagdic, Nilgun Goturk Baydar and Zehra Kurumahmutoglu Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture: Volume 84 (online)

                Note to members of the press only:

                For a copy of this paper, please contact David Greenberg at 201-748-6484 or by email at [email protected].

                About the Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture

                Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture is an SCI journal, published by John Wiley & Sons, on behalf of the Society of Chemical Industry, and is available in print (ISSN: 0022-5142) and online (ISSN: 1097-0010) via Wiley InterScience http://www.www.interscience.wiley.com For further information about the journal go to http://interscience.wiley.com/jsfa

                About SCI

                SCI is a unique international forum where science meets business on independent, impartial ground. Anyone can join, and the Society offers a chance to share information between sectors as diverse as food and agriculture, pharmaceuticals, biotechnology, environmental science and safety. Originally established in 1881, SCI (Society of Chemical Industry) is a registered charity with members in over 70 countries. http://www.soci.org.

                About Wiley

                John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., based in Chichester, England, is the largest subsidiary of John Wiley & Sons, Inc. Founded in 1807, John Wiley & Sons, Inc., provides must-have content and services to customers world-wide. Their core businesses include scientific, technical, and medical journals, encyclopedias, books, and online products and services; professional and consumer books and subscription services; and educational materials for undergraduate and graduate students and lifelong learners. Wiley has publishing, marketing, and distribution centres in the United States, Canada, Europe, Asia, and Australia. The company is listed on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbols JWa and JWb. Wiley's Internet site can be accessed at http://www.wileyeurope.com.

                http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/index.php?newsid=12299
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