If you’re overweight, your doctor may have advised weight loss to avoid metabolic syndrome—a prelude to more serious afflictions. Be sure to include plenty of peaches, nectarines and plums in your new diet. Nutrition scientists have learned that stone fruits contain unique bioactive compounds that may prevent metabolic syndrome from developing.
Deadly metabolic syndrome
Metabolic syndrome is the most serious threat to the 30 percent or more American adults who are overweight or obese. Metabolic syndrome is a deadly combination of conditions including high blood sugar levels, high blood pressure, high cholesterol and belly fat. Millions of overweight people who develop some or all of these conditions are diagnosed with metabolic syndrome and their risk of diabetes, heart attack and stroke goes through the roof.
In recent years many discoveries have been made about the healing properties of natural foods, and now researchers at Texas AgriLife Research claim that stone fruits such as peaches, plums and nectarines have the potential to fight off metabolic syndrome.
Stone fruits are unique
According to lead researcher Dr. Luis Cisneros-Zevallos, it’s the first time bioactive fruit compounds have demonstrated the power to attack a disease on several different fronts—which would be the ideal weapon against a multifaceted condition such as metabolic syndrome.
Cisneros-Zevallos said that stone fruits are unique because they have a mixture of different polyphenols (antioxidant compounds) that impact different aspects of metabolic syndrome. The polyphenols in peaches, plums and nectarines include anthocyanins, clorogenic acids, quercetin derivatives and catechins. Each polyphenol works on a different type of cell simultaneously to produce anti-obesity, anti-inflammatory and anti-diabetic effects, as well as reduce the oxidation of LDL (bad) cholesterol, which is associated to cardiovascular disease.
The study suggests that all stone fruits are a good defense against metabolic syndrome because each one contains a similar lineup of polyphenols in differing proportions and they may complement one another.
That’s something to consider for your next shopping list.