Grapes help counter high fat diets

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Matthew Jones

BY MATTHEW JONES

@matt_fruitnet

Grapes help counter high fat diets

Positive effects on fat metabolism and gut bacteria observed in new studies

Grapes help counter high fat diets

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Table grapes could help offset the adverse health consequences of high fat diets, according to two laboratory studies conducted at the University of North Carolina Greensboro.

The first study found that consuming a high butter‐fat diet (33 per cent of energy from fat) enriched with three per cent grapes for 11 weeks had a lower percentage of overall body fat and reduced subcutaneous fat deposits.

The second study, which ran for 16 weeks, used an even higher fat diet (44 per cent of energy from fat) with multiple types of saturated fat, including lard, beef tallow and butter. Researchers investigated the impact of the high fat diet enriched with extracts of either the polyphenol fraction of grapes or the non‐polyphenol portion of grapes, as well as the high fat diet plus five per cent whole grapes.

While the five per cent whole grape diet did not improve the subject’s metabolic profile, it did improve markers of intestinal health.

“These two studies suggest that grapes and grape polyphenols may help offset a number of the adverse effects of consuming a high fat diet and trigger improvements in intestinal or systemic health,” said the lead investigator of the study Michael McIntosh. “This is an exciting area of health that merits further study.” 

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