To examine whether juice rich in antioxidants (flavinoids) has a favourable effect on endothelial function in a course of 8 weeks.
Methods and Results
An Peripheral arterial tone (PAT) apparatus was used to measure endothelial function on 32 healthy individuals between the age of 20 and 48 years. The PAT technology measures arterial tone and peripheral artery dilatation after reactive hyperemia induced by a standard 5-minute arterial occlusion of the feeding artery. The subjects were divided in two groups, one drank 1/8L of Sambucca Nigrans juice daily for 8 weeks (group H), the other group drank 1/8L daily of a mixture of Aronia Melanocarpa and Sambucca Nigrans (group A) for eight weeks. Both of these juices are derived from black berries with high antioxidant content, the same type of antioxidants found in red wine, flavinoids. The subjects were studied a second time after eight weeks drinking the juices daily. The results did not show a significant increase in endothelial function comparing the baseline values with the values found after eight weeks (all subjects p=0,15, group H p=0,18, group A p=0,56).
After ingestion of the juices the subjects did not significantly improve their endothelial function. However as this was a pilot study a second study should be performed to examine the effects further as there was an insignificant improvement in endothelial function. A more powerful effect was found in the pure Sambuccus juice and further studies should focus on this juice. Epidemiological studies show a reduction in mortality from cardiovascular disease in people regularly drinking red wine compared to regular ingestion of other alcoholic beverages. This study does not significant support the hypothesis that antioxidant qualities of red wine may protect against cardiovascular disease.