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Thursday, July 11, 2019

Phytochemical Betacyanins, the Natural Free Radical Scavengers

Free radical scavengers are antioxidants that gobble up free radical before they can cause a chain of reaction.

Most common types of free radical scavengers are catalase, glutathione peroxidase, superoxide dismutase (SOD), vitamin A, C, D, and E.

Free radicals are highly unstable molecules. They can be everywhere. Internally, free radicals are produced in our body during the process of cell metabolism. Externally, free radicals can enter our body from the environment sources, such as the air we breathe, the food we eat and the water we drink.

In other words, any chemical compounds or molecules which process oxygen atom can be free radical after chemical interaction.

Oxidative stress is a result of overexpression of free radical-induced by a chain reaction that can not be stopped due to reduced levels of antioxidant enzymes produced by the body.

Why? overexpression of free radicals causes lipid peroxidation by oxidizing the free and ester forms of unsaturated fatty acids and cholesterol through three distinct mechanisms, including free radical-mediated chain reaction, enzyme-mediated oxidation, and nonradical, nonenzymatic oxidation.

Over time, oxidative stress can damage the lipid, and protein and induce the alternation of healthy cell DNA.

How important free radical scavengers to our body? Dr. Milind S Hatwalne in the investigation of the effect of free radical scavengers in anesthesiology and critical care wrote, "Free radicals are highly reactive and unstable compounds. They play a central role in the mechanism of cell injury and cell death".

And, "Free radical scavengers either prevent these reactive species from being formed or remove them before they can damage vital components of the cell" and "Several clinical trials have been performed in order to reduce oxidative stress by supplementation of antioxidants alone or in combination with standard therapies. Antioxidant supplementation at an early stage of illness may lead to improved therapies in the treatment of critically ill patients".

In other words, antioxidants with free radical scavenging activity may protect the body against the damage of various cellular components.

Betacyanins are phytochemicals in the class of red and yellow indole-derived pigments, belonging to the group of Betalains, found abundantly in beets, chard, etc.

With an aim to find a potential compound for the treatment of diseases associated with oxidative stress, researchers examined the effect of betacyanins as free radical scavengers.

By analyzing the compound in betacyanins, researchers found that
* Betanin was a weak free radical scavenger in the free radical chain-breaking probably due to kinetic solvent effects on its solubility, stability and reaction rates and partition in lipid bilayers (a thin polar membrane) activity.

* Betanidin also found in betacyanins behaved as a chain terminating antioxidant in the liposomal model,.particualrly in peroxyl radical-scavenging activity

The finding strongly suggested that betacyanins exhibit chemical reaction of betanin and its glycone betanidin towards peroxyl radicals generated from the azo-initiated oxidation.

Additionally, in the peroxyl radical generating system with the presence of AAPH and NO-generating system, researchers assessed the antioxidant capacity of betacyanins as indole-derived plant pigments, such as betanin, phyllotactic and betanidin.

According to the tested assays, betacyanins induced peroxyl radical scavenging capacity at a dose-dependent in the low concentration range (25-100 nM).

Furthermore, betacyanins also reduced the nitrite-level in the low concentration range of 2.5-20 μM.

In chemical ingredients differentiation, the IC₅₀ values (μM) of nitrogen radical scavenging activity were 24.48, 17.51 and 6.81 for betanin, phyllocactin and betanidin.

Based on the results, Dr. Taira J, the lead scientist wrote, "These results indicated that betacyanins have a strong antioxidant capacity, particularly betanidin with a catechol group had higher activity than those of the glycoside of betacyanins".

Taken altogether, betacyanins may be considered free radical scavenger to terminate the oxidative reaction, pending to the confirmation of the larger sample size and multicenter human study.

Intake of betacyanins in the form of supplement should be taken with extreme care to prevent overdose acute liver toxicity.

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Author Biography
Kyle J. Norton (Scholar, Master of Nutrition, All right reserved)
Health article writer and researcher; Over 10.000 articles and research papers have been written and published online, including worldwide health, ezine articles, article base, health blogs, self-growth, best before it's news, the karate GB daily, etc.,.
Named TOP 50 MEDICAL ESSAYS FOR ARTISTS & AUTHORS TO READ by Named 50 of the best health Tweeters Canada - Huffington Post
Nominated for shorty award over last 4 years
Some articles have been used as references in medical research, such as international journal Pharma and Bioscience, ISSN 0975-6299.

(1) Betacyanins as phenol antioxidants. Chemistry and mechanistic aspects of the lipoperoxyl radical-scavenging activity in solution and liposomes by Tesoriere L1, Allegra M, Gentile C, Livrea MA. (PubMed)
(2) Antioxidant capacity of betacyanins as radical scavengers for peroxyl radical and nitric oxide by Taira J1, Tsuchida E2, Katoh MC2, Uehara M2, Ogi T. (PubMed)
(3) Free radical scavengers in anesthesiology and critical care by Milind S Hatwalne. (PMC)

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