A mixed fruit and vegetable concentrate increases plasma antioxidant vitamins and folate and lowers plasma homocysteine in men

Samir Samman, Gayathri Sivarajah, June C. Man, Ziaul I. Ahmad, Peter Petocz, Ian D. Caterson

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78 Citations (Scopus)


Fruit and vegetable consumption is inversely associated with coronary heart disease (CHD) risk. The aim of the present study was to determine the effect of supplementation with dehydrated juice concentrates from mixed fruit and vegetables on selected plasma vitamins and antioxidant status. We assessed CHD risk by measuring the concentrations of homocysteine, lipids, lipoproteins, glucose and insulin. Men were recruited to participate in a randomized double-blind, crossover trial with 2 periods of 6 wk, separated by a 3-wk wash-out period. Supplementation with the encapsulated mixed extract (Juice Plus) was compared with physically similar placebo capsules. Thirty-two men (13 smokers, 19 nonsmokers) completed the study with a mean compliance of 88%. Compared with placebo, supplementation increased the concentrations of plasma β-carotene (0.24 ± 0.15 vs. 1.12 ± 0.70 μmol/L; mean ± SD; P < 0.0001), retinol (1.87 ± 0.33 vs. 2.00 ± 0.43 μmol/L; P < 0.05), α-tocopherol (16.8 ± 7.3 vs. 19.3 ± 6.8/μmol/L; P < 0.01), ascorbic acid (72.1 ± 19.4 vs. 84.1 ± 13.5 μmol/L; P < 0.002) and folic acid (24.5 ± 10.0 vs. 44.9 ± 16.9 nmol/L; P < 0.0001). Plasma homocysteine was reduced (8.2 ± 1.5 vs. 7.6 ± 1.1; P < 0.05) and inversely related (r = -0.40, P < 0.001) with serum folate concentrations. Plasma vitamin C was positively correlated with the resistance of LDL to oxidation (r = 0.26, P < 0.05) and the plasma ferric reducing/antioxidant power (FRAP) tended to be greater after supplementation than after the placebo period (1125.5 ± 144.1 vs. 1180.3 ± 158.1 μmol/L; P < 0.065). Plasma glucose, insulin and lipid concentrations were unaffected. Responses of smokers and nonsmokers did not differ. In the absence of dietary modification, supplementation with a fruit and vegetable concentrate produced responses consistent with a reduction in CHD risk.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2188-2193
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Nutrition
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 2003
Externally publishedYes


  • Fruit and vegetable concentrates
  • Homocysteine
  • Vitamins


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