Anthocyanin-rich new zealand blackcurrant: Implications for health


Institute of Sport, Nursing and Allied Health, University of Chichester,
College Lane, Chichester, United Kingdom


Regular fruit intake contributes to your health. Studies have reported on the health-providing anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory effects of many fruit berries. New Zealand blackcurrant is a dark-colored berry rich in the flavonoid polyphenol anthocyanin. The physiological and metabolic responses at rest and during exercise by short-term intake of anthocyanin-rich New Zealand blackcurrant can provide an indication for the potential to promote health. This mini review will cover primarily the findings of some of our studies using New Zealand blackcurrant with meaningful changes on exercise-induced fat oxidation, cardiovascular function during supine rest, insulin sensitivity, and emission of skin volatile organic compounds. Daily intake of New Zealand blackcurrant has the potential to provide benefits for exercise, health and well-being.

Studies on the post-exercise effects by fruits (e.g. blueberry/banana and metabolic recovery after 75 km cycling (1), cherry and recovery following marathon running (2), chokeberry and rowing-induced inflammation and iron metabolism (3), blueberry and natural killer cells, oxidative stress and inflammation after 2.5 h of running (4), bilberry and muscle damage and inflammation after a half-marathon (5), and blackcurrant and rowing-induced oxidative stress and inflammation (6)) provided the diversity of responses with application for athletes. Some of the observations from these studies can be linked to the fruit-induced anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory effects. Anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory effect by regular fruit intake can also provide health benefits due to the major class of polyphenols, the flavonoids and major sub-class the anthocyanins (7) with an importance for anthocyanin type and content (8). Dark-colored berries are rich in anthocyanins. In berry-producing plants, anthocyanins are secondary metabolites with a suggested role in stress protection (9). The berry blackcurrant (Ribes Nigrum Linnaeus) contains primarily the anthoc ...