Scientists from Harvard University and the University of East Anglia (UEA) have found that fruits high in flavonoids can help us sustain a healthy body weight, and can even help us on our way when we want to shed a few pounds.
The research, published in the British Medical Journal, uncovered that a single, daily 80g serving of fruit that is naturally high in flavonoids – such as blueberries, cherries, strawberries and radishes – could greatly improve our health, and also help us maintain a healthy weight.
The study saw scientists analyse data from 124,086 US men and women over a 24-year period. The researched honed in on three specific groups; one consisting of women with an average age of 36 at the start of the study, another featuring women and 48 and another consisting of men with an average age of 47.
By the end of the study, researchers were able to conclude that consuming a small portion of fruit rich in flavonoids each day was linked to the maintenance of a healthy body weight, and can at times, even help us lose weight.
“Most adults gain weight as they age and even small increases in weight can have a substantial impact on risk of high blood pressure, developing heart disease, cancer or diabetes – so strategies to help individuals maintain a healthy weight in middle age are needed,” said Aedin Cassidy, Professor of UEA’s Norwich Medical School.
“We found that an increased consumption of most flavonoids was associated with weight maintenance, and even modest weight loss. The results were found to be consistent across men and women, and different ages,” he adds.
The most powerful flavonoids are found in strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, cherries, grapes, blackcurrants and radishes, according to the study, and scientists claim that eating these foods could help people shed 1-2lbs. The nutritious plant compound can also be found in wine, tea and chocolate.