1. Purple Corn may help lower blood pressure.
Having a healthy blood pressure is key in maintaining heart health as increased pressure can lead to reduced blood vessel integrity. A study conducted in 2004 found that purple corn anthocyanins (purple phytochemicals) are able to increase nitric oxide production within blood vessels helping to keep them relaxed and functioning optimally (1). While an animal study conducted in 2007 showed a reduction in blood pressure and heart rate of hypertensive rats after their diet was supplemented with the same purple corn anthocyanin extract (2).
2. Purple Corn may assist in the prevention of Diabetes and Diabetes related complications such as Kidney Disease.
Anthocyanins extracted from purple corn have been shown to possess an anti-diabetic effect by inhibiting insulin resistance and protecting pancreatic cells from damage (3). Another study conducted by scientists at Hallym University in Korea found potential benefits of purple corn anthocyanins on the development of diabetic nephropathy (aka Kidney Disease) (4). The study found that these compounds, unique to purple corn, were able to stop multiple pathways involved in the development of diabetic induced kidney disease by interfering with cell-cell adhesion and inflammatory processes that lead to kidney malfunction.
3. Purple Corn may protect against Colon Cancer.
A study on the effects of various anthocyanin extracts on human colon cancer cells conducted by Dr Monica Guista at Ohio State University found that anthocyanins extracted from Purple Corn were able to not only stop the growth of cancer cells in preliminary test tube testing, but also kill 20 percent of them while having no effect on healthy human cells (5). This result was even better than when extracts were taken from other anthocyanin rich foods such as radishes, black carrots, grapes and bilberries. Dr Guista puts this remarkable outcome down to the different chemical structure of these extracts and found that even though all extracts were able to slow down the growth of colon cancer cells those derived from purple corn were more potent and show greatest promise in colon cancer prevention. While these preliminary lab results show promise for purple corn compounds more study is required and human clinical trials needed to validate the potential of purple corn in bowel cancer prevention.
4. Purple Corn may be able to prevent obesity.
A 2003 study published in the Journal of Nutrition demonstrated that over-fed mice who were also fed purple corn extract did not gain weight unlike the non-supplemented mice group (6) . Not only this, but the study also found that purple corn extract was able to mitigate the harmful effects of a pro-inflammatory diet by normalizing key indicators of metabolic dysfunction such as high insulin and blood glucose levels. These results help validate the use of purple corn as a functional food in the prevention of obesity and obesity related conditions.
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