Apple polyphenols and fibers attenuate atherosclerosis in apolipoprotein E-deficient mice.
Phytomedicine. 2007 Apr;14(4):280-4. Epub 2007 Feb 12. PMID: 18558693
Atherosclerosis, which is closely linked to nutritional habits, is a major cause of mortality in Western countries. Most of the previous investigations carried out on health effects of apples have been focused on their capacity to lower lipid concentration as well as on their antioxidant effects. The aim of the present study was to investigate the antiatherosclerotic effects of apple polyphenols and fibers. A crude apple polyphenol extract and low-viscosity apple fibers isolated from cider apples were administered separately or in association with the diet of apo E-deficient mice. After 4 months of supplementation, lipemia and oxidative stress biomarkers were measured and atheroslerotic lesions assessed by histomorphometry. Total plasmatic cholesterol and triacylgycerol levels were not affected by supplementation, and hepatic cholesterol level was lower in the group supplemented with both fibers and polyphenols. Uric acid concentrations and antioxidant capacity (FRAP) in plasma were reduced in all groups supplemented with polyphenols or fibers. The mean lesion area was reduced by 17, 38, and 38%, respectively, for the polyphenol, fiber, and polyphenol + fiber groups. Apple constituents supplied at nutritional doses therefore limit the development of atherosclerotic lesions in the aorta of apo E-deficient mice. On the basis of the results, we hypothesize that apple fibers and polyphenols may play a role in preventing atherosclerosis disease by decreasing uric acid plasma level.