Flavanols: Digestion, absorption and bioactivity

Robert M. Hackman, John A. Polagruto, Qin Yan Zhu, Buxiang Sun, Hajime Fujii, Carl L Keen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

51 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Flavanols, or flavan-3-ols, are a family of bioactive compounds present in cocoa, red wine, green tea, red grapes, berries and apples. With a basic monomer unit of (-)-epicatechin or (+)-catechin, flavanols can be present in foods and beverages as monomers or oligomers (procyanidins). Most, but not all, procyanidins are degraded into monomer or dimer units prior to absorption. The bioavailability of flavanols can be influenced by multiple factors, including food processing, cooking, digestion, and biotransformation. Flavanols are potent antioxidants, scavenging free radicals in vitro and in vivo. While some of the actions of flavanols can be linked to antioxidant activities, other modes of action may also occur, including modulation of intracellular signaling, effects on membrane fluidity and regulation of cytokine release or action. Physiologically, flavanol-rich foods and beverages can affect platelet aggregation, vascular inflammation, endothelial nitric oxide metabolism, and may confer protective effects against neurodegeneration. Epidemiological data suggests that intake of cocoa, a rich source of flavanols, is inversely associated with 15-year cardiovascular and all-cause mortality in older males. (-)-Epicatechin and its metabolite, epicatechin-7-O-glucuronide, have been identified as independent predictors of some of the vascular effects associated with the consumption of a flavanol-rich beverage. Targeted dietary components and nutrition supplements that can influence the vascular system will be of great value in the prevention and treatment of chronic disease.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)195-208
Number of pages14
JournalPhytochemistry Reviews
Volume7
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 2008

Fingerprint

Catechin
flavanols
Digestion
digestion
Blood Vessels
Food and Beverages
Proanthocyanidins
Antioxidants
epicatechin
beverages
Food Handling
Membrane Fluidity
Beverages
Glucuronides
Vitis
Cooking
procyanidins
Malus
Tea
Wine

Keywords

  • Cardiovascular disease
  • Epicatechin
  • Flavanols
  • Procyanidin
  • Vascular function

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Medicine
  • Plant Science
  • Biotechnology

Cite this

Hackman, R. M., Polagruto, J. A., Zhu, Q. Y., Sun, B., Fujii, H., & Keen, C. L. (2008). Flavanols: Digestion, absorption and bioactivity. Phytochemistry Reviews, 7(1), 195-208. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11101-007-9070-4

Flavanols : Digestion, absorption and bioactivity. / Hackman, Robert M.; Polagruto, John A.; Zhu, Qin Yan; Sun, Buxiang; Fujii, Hajime; Keen, Carl L.

In: Phytochemistry Reviews, Vol. 7, No. 1, 01.2008, p. 195-208.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Hackman, RM, Polagruto, JA, Zhu, QY, Sun, B, Fujii, H & Keen, CL 2008, 'Flavanols: Digestion, absorption and bioactivity', Phytochemistry Reviews, vol. 7, no. 1, pp. 195-208. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11101-007-9070-4
Hackman RM, Polagruto JA, Zhu QY, Sun B, Fujii H, Keen CL. Flavanols: Digestion, absorption and bioactivity. Phytochemistry Reviews. 2008 Jan;7(1):195-208. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11101-007-9070-4
Hackman, Robert M. ; Polagruto, John A. ; Zhu, Qin Yan ; Sun, Buxiang ; Fujii, Hajime ; Keen, Carl L. / Flavanols : Digestion, absorption and bioactivity. In: Phytochemistry Reviews. 2008 ; Vol. 7, No. 1. pp. 195-208.
@article{0cc7b3de372a4140ad0944b19e0692fe,
title = "Flavanols: Digestion, absorption and bioactivity",
abstract = "Flavanols, or flavan-3-ols, are a family of bioactive compounds present in cocoa, red wine, green tea, red grapes, berries and apples. With a basic monomer unit of (-)-epicatechin or (+)-catechin, flavanols can be present in foods and beverages as monomers or oligomers (procyanidins). Most, but not all, procyanidins are degraded into monomer or dimer units prior to absorption. The bioavailability of flavanols can be influenced by multiple factors, including food processing, cooking, digestion, and biotransformation. Flavanols are potent antioxidants, scavenging free radicals in vitro and in vivo. While some of the actions of flavanols can be linked to antioxidant activities, other modes of action may also occur, including modulation of intracellular signaling, effects on membrane fluidity and regulation of cytokine release or action. Physiologically, flavanol-rich foods and beverages can affect platelet aggregation, vascular inflammation, endothelial nitric oxide metabolism, and may confer protective effects against neurodegeneration. Epidemiological data suggests that intake of cocoa, a rich source of flavanols, is inversely associated with 15-year cardiovascular and all-cause mortality in older males. (-)-Epicatechin and its metabolite, epicatechin-7-O-glucuronide, have been identified as independent predictors of some of the vascular effects associated with the consumption of a flavanol-rich beverage. Targeted dietary components and nutrition supplements that can influence the vascular system will be of great value in the prevention and treatment of chronic disease.",
keywords = "Cardiovascular disease, Epicatechin, Flavanols, Procyanidin, Vascular function",
author = "Hackman, {Robert M.} and Polagruto, {John A.} and Zhu, {Qin Yan} and Buxiang Sun and Hajime Fujii and Keen, {Carl L}",
year = "2008",
month = "1",
doi = "10.1007/s11101-007-9070-4",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "7",
pages = "195--208",
journal = "Phytochemistry Reviews",
issn = "1568-7767",
publisher = "Springer Netherlands",
number = "1",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Flavanols

T2 - Digestion, absorption and bioactivity

AU - Hackman, Robert M.

AU - Polagruto, John A.

AU - Zhu, Qin Yan

AU - Sun, Buxiang

AU - Fujii, Hajime

AU - Keen, Carl L

PY - 2008/1

Y1 - 2008/1

N2 - Flavanols, or flavan-3-ols, are a family of bioactive compounds present in cocoa, red wine, green tea, red grapes, berries and apples. With a basic monomer unit of (-)-epicatechin or (+)-catechin, flavanols can be present in foods and beverages as monomers or oligomers (procyanidins). Most, but not all, procyanidins are degraded into monomer or dimer units prior to absorption. The bioavailability of flavanols can be influenced by multiple factors, including food processing, cooking, digestion, and biotransformation. Flavanols are potent antioxidants, scavenging free radicals in vitro and in vivo. While some of the actions of flavanols can be linked to antioxidant activities, other modes of action may also occur, including modulation of intracellular signaling, effects on membrane fluidity and regulation of cytokine release or action. Physiologically, flavanol-rich foods and beverages can affect platelet aggregation, vascular inflammation, endothelial nitric oxide metabolism, and may confer protective effects against neurodegeneration. Epidemiological data suggests that intake of cocoa, a rich source of flavanols, is inversely associated with 15-year cardiovascular and all-cause mortality in older males. (-)-Epicatechin and its metabolite, epicatechin-7-O-glucuronide, have been identified as independent predictors of some of the vascular effects associated with the consumption of a flavanol-rich beverage. Targeted dietary components and nutrition supplements that can influence the vascular system will be of great value in the prevention and treatment of chronic disease.

AB - Flavanols, or flavan-3-ols, are a family of bioactive compounds present in cocoa, red wine, green tea, red grapes, berries and apples. With a basic monomer unit of (-)-epicatechin or (+)-catechin, flavanols can be present in foods and beverages as monomers or oligomers (procyanidins). Most, but not all, procyanidins are degraded into monomer or dimer units prior to absorption. The bioavailability of flavanols can be influenced by multiple factors, including food processing, cooking, digestion, and biotransformation. Flavanols are potent antioxidants, scavenging free radicals in vitro and in vivo. While some of the actions of flavanols can be linked to antioxidant activities, other modes of action may also occur, including modulation of intracellular signaling, effects on membrane fluidity and regulation of cytokine release or action. Physiologically, flavanol-rich foods and beverages can affect platelet aggregation, vascular inflammation, endothelial nitric oxide metabolism, and may confer protective effects against neurodegeneration. Epidemiological data suggests that intake of cocoa, a rich source of flavanols, is inversely associated with 15-year cardiovascular and all-cause mortality in older males. (-)-Epicatechin and its metabolite, epicatechin-7-O-glucuronide, have been identified as independent predictors of some of the vascular effects associated with the consumption of a flavanol-rich beverage. Targeted dietary components and nutrition supplements that can influence the vascular system will be of great value in the prevention and treatment of chronic disease.

KW - Cardiovascular disease

KW - Epicatechin

KW - Flavanols

KW - Procyanidin

KW - Vascular function

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=36849018987&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=36849018987&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1007/s11101-007-9070-4

DO - 10.1007/s11101-007-9070-4

M3 - Article

AN - SCOPUS:36849018987

VL - 7

SP - 195

EP - 208

JO - Phytochemistry Reviews

JF - Phytochemistry Reviews

SN - 1568-7767

IS - 1

ER -