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Articles from 2008 In April


WHAT IT IS: Also known as vitamin B3, niacin is found in nuts, eggs, fish, dairy, poultry, legumes, and enriched cereals.

BENEFITS: Assists in converting food to energy and increases levels of HDL (good) cholesterol. Niacin also helps maintain proper functioning of the digestive system, skin, and nerves.

*Consult your health care practitioner for a dose that's right for you.

Herbalife Ltd. Announces Record First-Quarter 2008 Results

LOS ANGELES, May 01, 2008 (BUSINESS WIRE) -- Herbalife Ltd. (HLF) today reported first quarter net sales of $604.4 million, an increase of 19.0 percent compared to the same period of 2007. This record performance was attributable to double-digit growth in several of the company's top countries; the U.S. up 14.3 percent, Taiwan up 14.8 percent, Italy up 29.7 percent, China up 111.5 percent, Japan up 10.4 percent, and Spain up 30.2 percent in each case as compared to the same period in 2007, including a 710 basis point favorable impact from currency fluctuations. The company's Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Michael O. Johnson, said, "We are pleased to report our 17th consecutive quarter of double-digit growth and record net sales, as all five of our regions reported positive sales growth, reflecting the strong performance of our independent distributor organization. Herbalife's continued success reflects geographic balance among our portfolio of 65 markets coupled with our distributor's transition to a daily consumption retail model."

During the first quarter 2008, total Sales Leaders(1) increased 11.9 percent to 351,448 and new Sales Leaders increased 10.4 percent to 48,805 versus the first quarter of 2007. The company's President's Team membership increased 12.9 percent to 1,132 members and the company's prestigious Chairman's Club increased 16.7 percent to 35 members. "Double-digit growth of our Sales Leaders at all recognition levels of our marketing plan demonstrates the vitality we have throughout the distributor organization. Close collaboration between our independent distributors and our management team, coupled with strong distributor leadership, provides the foundation for our continued strong topline sales performance," added Johnson.

For the quarter ended March 31, 2008, the company reported net income of $62.4 million, or $0.93 per diluted share, compared to $41.2 million, or $0.55 per diluted share in the first quarter of 2007. The increase in net income was primarily attributable to double-digit net sales growth, expansion in operating profit margins, and a lower effective tax rate. Excluding the impact of expenses associated with the Realignment for Growth initiative and increase in tax reserves in first quarter 2007(2), adjusted diluted earnings per share in the first quarter of 2008 was a $0.32 improvement compared to the $0.61 in the first quarter of 2007, reflecting an increase of 52.1 percent.
During the first quarter, the company repurchased 0.4 million of its common shares through open market transactions at an average price of $39.28 for an aggregate cost of $17.7 million. Since this share repurchase program was authorized in April 2007 through first quarter 2008, the company has repurchased 9.5 million shares at an aggregate cost of $383.5 million, which is 85 percent of the $450 million authorization, or approximately 13 percent of its common stock, outstanding at the end of March 2008.

During the first quarter, the company invested approximately $25 million in capital expenditures, primarily related to enhancements to its management information systems, including the roll out of its Oracle ERP system, and additional infrastructure investments to improve distributor service levels in high growth markets.

First Quarter 2008 Business Highlights
The company supported the development and training of its distributors during the first quarter by hosting multiple events, including over 20,000 distributors at the South America Extravaganzas, as well as training events in the North America, EMEA, Mexico and Central America and Asia Pacific regions.

In March, Herbalife hosted its annual global Herbalife Honors event in Singapore where 1,100 President's Team members from around the world met and shared best practices and Herbalife distributors received approximately $34 million in Mark Hughes Bonus awards related to 2007.

Regional Performance
The Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) region, the company's largest region, reported net sales of $158.0 million in the first quarter of 2008, an increase of 10.3 percent versus the same period of 2007. However, excluding the benefit of currency fluctuations, net sales decreased 1.7 percent. The EMEA region realized net sales growth in several of its top markets during the first quarter of 2008, including Russia up 64.6 percent, Spain up 30.2 percent, and Italy up 29.7 percent, in each case compared to the first quarter of 2007. These net sales gains were partially offset by declines in other markets including Germany down 17.5 percent. The Netherlands, a top 10 market in the EMEA region, was essentially flat versus the comparable period of 2007. New Sales Leaders in the region, as of March 31, 2008, decreased 14.5 percent versus March 31, 2007 to 6,533. Total Sales Leaders in the region, as of March 31, 2008, decreased 8.3 percent to 61,802 versus March 31, 2007.

The Asia Pacific region reported net sales of $128.2 million in the first quarter of 2008, up 23.7 percent versus the same period of 2007. Excluding currency fluctuations, net sales increased 15.7 percent. The increase is attributable to net sales growth in China up 111.5 percent, Taiwan up 14.8 percent, Japan up 10.4 percent, and South Korea up 6.2 percent. New Sales Leaders in the region, as of March 31, 2008, increased 14.0 percent versus March 31, 2007 to 13,127. Total Sales Leaders as of March 31, 2008 increased 25.9 percent to 86,695 versus March 31, 2007. These figures include China sales employees.

The North America region reported net sales of $118.6 million in the first quarter of 2008, up 13.5 percent versus the same period of 2007, driven by growth in the US of 14.3 percent versus first quarter 2007. Excluding currency fluctuations, net sales increased 12.9 percent. New Sales Leaders in the region, as of March 31, 2008, were flat versus March 31, 2007 at 9,010. Total Sales Leaders in the region, as of March 31, 2008, increased 17.4 percent to 67,749 versus March 31, 2007.

The South America region reported net sales of $102.0 million in the first quarter of 2008, up 67.5 percent versus the same period of 2007. Excluding currency fluctuations, net sales increased 54.2 percent. The growth in the region was primarily attributable to double and triple digit growth in key markets including Venezuela up 299.6 percent, Bolivia up 461.3 percent, and Peru up 213.5 percent, as well as the region's largest market, Brazil up 7.1 percent. New Sales Leaders in the region, as of March 31, 2008, increased 40.7 percent versus March 31, 2007 to 12,491. Total Sales Leaders in the region, as of March 31, 2008, increased 29.0 percent to 70,041 versus March 31, 2007.

The Mexico and Central America region reported net sales of $97.6 million in the first quarter of 2008, up 1.8 percent versus the same period of 2007. Excluding currency fluctuations, net sales for the region decreased 0.3 percent. Mexico, the largest market in the region, had a sales decrease of 0.5 percent. New Sales Leaders in the region, as of March 31, 2008, increased 6.4 percent versus March 31, 2007 to 7,644. Total Sales Leaders in the region, as of March 31, 2008, decreased 0.8 percent to 65,161 versus March 31, 2007.

Second Quarter 2008 and Full Year 2008 Guidance
Based on its current business trends, the company is raising its full year 2008 diluted earnings per share guidance to be in a range of $3.52 - $3.57 reflecting current foreign exchange rates and an effective tax rate of between 30.5 percent and 31.5 percent. This new guidance reflects an earnings per share growth of 30 percent to 32 percent compared to the adjusted 2007 earnings per share of $2.71.

The company is providing guidance for the second quarter of 2008 in the range of $0.89 - $0.92 for diluted earnings per share reflecting an effective tax rate of between 29.5 percent and 30.5 percent. Second quarter investment in capital expenditures is expected in the range of $25 million - $27 million, and full year 2008 capital expenditure guidance is expected to be in the range of $89 million - $92 million.

President & COO Probert Resigns
Chairman and CEO Michael O. Johnson accepted President and COO Gregory L. Probert's resignation effective April 30, 2008. The misstatement of Probert's academic credentials has been a matter under review by the board of directors. Given the company's unwavering commitment to the highest standards in business ethics, the company had no other choice but to accept the resignation. Existing Herbalife personnel have assumed Probert's responsibilities. Des Walsh, senior vice president of worldwide sales, has been promoted to executive vice president.

"Greg made substantial contributions to Herbalife," said Johnson. "The circumstances surrounding his resignation are disappointing but I am very pleased that Des Walsh has accepted an expanded role in the company."

In addition to his current responsibilities for sales strategy, business development, corporate events, call center and distributor services, and worldwide promotions, the company's five regional managing directors will now report to Walsh, as will additional key functions in support of Herbalife's independent distributors such as corporate marketing services and alliances.

"Des and I worked together at Disney in the successful expansion of the video business, and for the last four years at Herbalife, he has been instrumental to our very strong relationship with our distributors," said Johnson. "Our distributors are the key to our success and Des is known and respected worldwide for his leadership."

Walsh has extensive international business experience gained during his 20-year career in sales, marketing and executive management. He joined Herbalife in 2004 from DMX Music, where he was senior vice president of the commercial division and responsible for innovative sales programs and partnerships that led to growth in new U.S. markets. Prior to DMX, he was a vice president of Disney's Buena Vista Home Entertainment, where he played a key role in expanding the company's video business in the major markets of the world. Walsh's previous experience includes key management positions at MovieQuik Systems, a division of The Southland Corporation (now 7-Eleven), and Commtron Corporation, a leading consumer electronics and video distribution company.

About Herbalife Ltd.
Herbalife Ltd. is a global network marketing company that sells weight-management, nutrition, and personal care products intended to support a healthy lifestyle. Herbalife products are sold in 65 countries through a network of over 1.8 million independent distributors. The company supports the Herbalife Family Foundation and its Casa Herbalife program to bring good nutrition to children. Please visit Herbalife Investor Relations for additional financial information.
Disclosure Regarding Forward-Looking Statements
Except for historical information contained herein, the matters set forth in this press release are "forward-looking statements." All statements other than
statements of historical fact are "forward-looking statements" for purposes of federal and state securities laws, including any projections of earnings, revenue or other financial items; any statements of the plans, strategies and objectives of management for future operations; any statements concerning proposed new services or developments; any statements regarding future economic conditions or performance; any statements of belief; and any statements of assumptions underlying any of the foregoing. Forward-looking statements may include the words, "may," "will," "estimate," "intend," "continue," "believe," "expect," or "anticipate" and any other similar words.
Although we believe that the expectations reflected in any of our forward-looking statements are reasonable, actual results could differ materially from those projected or assumed in any of our forward-looking statements. Our future financial condition and results of operations, as well as any forward-looking statements, are subject to change and to inherent risks and uncertainties, such as those disclosed or incorporated by reference in our filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Important factors that could cause our actual results, performance and achievements, or industry results to differ materially from estimates or projections contained in our forward-looking statements include, among others, the following:
-- our relationship with, and our ability to influence the actions of, our distributors;
-- adverse publicity associated with our products or network marketing organization;
-- uncertainties relating to interpretation and enforcement of recently enacted legislation in China governing direct selling;
-- our inability to obtain the necessary licenses to expand our direct selling business in China;
-- adverse changes in the Chinese economy, Chinese legal system or Chinese governmental policies;
-- improper action by our employees or international distributors in violation of applicable law;
-- changing consumer preferences and demands;
-- loss or departure of any member of our senior management team which could negatively impact our distributor relations and operating results;
-- the competitive nature of our business;
-- regulatory matters governing our products, including potential governmental or regulatory actions concerning the safety or efficacy of our products, and network marketing program including the direct selling market in which we operate;
-- risks associated with operating internationally, including foreign exchange and devaluation risks;
-- our dependence on increased penetration of existing markets;
-- contractual limitations on our ability to expand our business;
-- our reliance on our information technology infrastructure and outside manufacturers;
-- the sufficiency of trademarks and other intellectual property rights;
-- product concentration;
-- our reliance on our management team;
-- uncertainties relating to the application of transfer pricing, duties, value added taxes and similar tax regulations;
-- taxation relating to our distributors;
-- product liability claims; and
-- whether we will purchase any of our shares in the open markets or otherwise.

New Chapter & Nourish America Give New York’s Poor a Nutritional Hand- Up with Free Organic Vitamins

(OJAI, CA) In New York City, high housing costs and the economic down-turn has created an
unprecedented number of families and individuals in need. In fact, with more than 9,000 families
in shelters each night, last year was the worst year for family homelessness in modern New
York City history. In response, Nourish America and New Chapter have joined together to help
strengthen the health and wellbeing of New York’s poor and homeless by providing them with
New Chapter’s high-quality, organic multivitamins and supplements.

“Even though there are more families needing food and nutrition here, food banks are receiving
fewer donations because of problems with the economy,” reports Swami Durga Das, Director of
The River Fund New York. “Actually, some food pantries here are closing because they can’t
keep up with the need. But at River Fund, we are really fortunate to benefit from Nourish
America’s programs. Nourish America sends us a steady supply of the highest quality nutrition
for our clients. In the past few months, we’ve received great organic vitamins and supplements
from New Chapter. Our clients are beyond grateful. Many are sick and malnourished and
though they desperately need nutritional support, they would never be able to afford top of the
line products like these. People tell me every day how much better they feel,” says Durga Das.
“I have tried the diet and energy pills, the stress pills, and the vitamin E pills and they have
helped me feel more energetic and less stressful,” reports Rosa Rodriquez. When I take the diet
pills, I feel full and do not overeat and feel more active. I have been exercising and eating better.
I never felt this good. Also, while taking the stress support, I have noticed I feel less chaos and
more clarity. Things don’t upset me as much and I react less and my life is more peaceful and
productive. I feel so much happier and healthier. Thanks!”

River Fund clients have received New Chapter’s Berry Green, Organic E Food, Zyflamend PM,
Organic Diet and Energy, Oreganoforce, Organic Stress Multivitamins as well as Every Man
Daily Multivitamins. Clients have reported that they are sleeping better, eating healthier and
looking younger. Clients also say they are less depressed and more hopeful since taking New
Chapter’s products. “…I feel more balanced and full of life. Thank you…” says Michael Greene,
retired senior.

“To better their lives, America’s poor must increase their wellbeing and vitality. New Chapter’s
great products are clearly providing those priceless gifts. We deeply appreciate New Chapter’s
generous contributions. Thank you to everyone at New Chapter for choosing to be a part of the
Nourish America team,” says Michael Morton, Executive Director.

“We are thrilled to have found Nourish America. They have afforded us a swift, efficient network
for donating product to those who need it most,” says Barbi Schulick, New Chapter’s Co-
Founder and Director of Sustainability.

About Nourish America™
Nourish America™ is a tax-exempt, non-profit organization that improves the health of children,
families, and seniors in need in America by providing vitamin supplements, nourishing foods
(including organics and naturals) as well as nutrition education and research. Since 1999,
Nourish America has provided nutritional support to hundreds of thousands of children, prenatal
mothers, teens, senior citizens, veterans, and natural disaster victims throughout the United

Nourish America has received the highest rating two years in a row for fiscal management from
Charity Navigator, the nation’s leading charity watchdog organization, ranking it in the top 14%
of 5,000 of America’s best-known charities. Independent audits of Nourish America’s finances
show that 94% of all donations go directly to programs and those served. To learn more about
Nourish America call us (866) 487-1484 or visit us online at

About New Chapter®
New Chapter was founded in 1982 with a mission to promote healing through the infinite
wisdom of whole foods. We believe Nature got it right the first time. That is, nourishment,
protection and health come from whole food -- not from the synthetic vitamins, minerals and
chemical herbal isolates you’ll find in most supplements. In fact, we hesitate to even categorize
New Chapter products as food supplements. Rather, New Chapter is supplemental food,
because it is food. Located in Brattleboro, Vermont, we carry the distinction of being the
supplement industry's first certified organic manufacturer to produce vitamins and minerals
made with organic ingredients. We are also committed to supporting and protecting the
environment, and our Costa Rican farm, Luna Nueva, is a world model for organic sustainable
agriculture in the rain forest. For more information on New Chapter, visit

# # #

NSF International Launches New Beverage Quality Program

Certification Program Expands Scope and Reach to Meet Bottlers’ Increasing Needs Around the Globe

ANN ARBOR, MI - NSF International (NSF) today announced the launch of a new Beverage Quality Certification Program . The one-of-a-kind program expands the scope of NSF's bottled water program to test, audit and certify natural mineral waters, flavored and functional beverages.

With more than 6 billion gallons of bottled water being purchased each year, consumers are looking for ways to choose products that meet the highest quality and safety standards. NSF's new Beverage Quality Certification Program helps consumers make more informed decisions when it comes to purchasing bottled water and beverages.

“When consumers see the NSF Mark on a bottle's label, they can be confident that it meets the industry's highest standards,” said Nancy Culotta, NSF Vice President. “NSF Certification also allows bottlers to communicate their exceptional commitment to product quality and safety.”

NSF currently certifies approximately 200 bottlers in over 60 countries. Each of these bottlers voluntarily undergo extensive product testing and unannounced, bottling facility audits, which encompass every aspect of the operation from water source to the filling room. NSF performs extensive product testing for over 160 chemicals, inorganic, radiological and microbiological contaminants. As part of the certification process, bottlers are also required to submit a toxicological review of all ingredients. Certification and testing to both United States Food and Drug Administration (USFDA) and European Union (EU) requirements are available.

These additional steps provide consumers with peace of mind. Functional beverages must also meet requirements set forth by NSF's Dietary Supplement Certification Program to verify that the contents of the bottle match what is indicated on the product label.

Consumers have expressed interest in understanding the Carbon Footprint of the products they purchase. In early April, NSF, in collaboration with Zenith International and international emissions measurement expert, Trucost plc, NSF announced the development of a new Carbon Action Plan (CAP) ( The global sustainability initiative helps measure and verifies greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions within the beverage industry. This includes the use of recycled packaging content, renewable/green energy, efficient water use, and off-setting through verified schemes.

For additional information on NSF's Beverage Quality Certification Program, visit or contact Adam Bloom, General Manager of NSF's Beverage Quality Certification Program at 734-827-3828 or Consumers can also visit for more information on bottled water and beverages.

Background on NSF’s Bottled Water Program
In 1984, due to increased consumer use and interest in bottled water, NSF created a bottled water certification program based on applicable FDA regulations. That same year, NSF developed a relationship with the International Bottled Water Associations (IBWA) and began providing independent inspection and audits of IBWA member facilities as a condition of the bottlers’ IBWA memberships. When the bottled water industry began to expand in the mid 1980s, the NSF bottled water certification program expanded along with it. This expansion continues today.

NSF collaborates with world-leading associations, including IBWA, Bottled Water Cooler Association (BWCA), Canadian Bottled Water Association (CBWA), European Bottled Watercooler Association (EBWA), Associaçao Brasileira da Industria de Áquas Minerais (ABINAM), Latin American Bottled Water Association (LABWA), International Packaged Ice Association (IPIA) and International Council of Bottled Water Associations (ICBWA).

About NSF International: NSF International, an independent, not-for-profit organization, helps protect you by certifying products and writing standards for food, water and consumer goods ( Founded in 1944, NSF is committed to protecting public health and safety worldwide. NSF is a World Health Organization Collaborating Centre for Food and Water Safety and Indoor Environment. Additional services include safety audits for the food and water industries, management systems registrations delivered through NSF International Strategic Registrations, organic certification provided by Quality Assurance International and education through the NSF Center for Public Health Education.

Stable Micro Systems Helps Bakery Manufacturers Get a Rise

Stable Micro Systems, expert in food quality evaluation, has developed a new test method for the baking industry. The Volscan Profiler is a laser-based instrument that allows manufacturers to measure automatically the volume of a baked product. This gives vital information relating to its inherent qualities, which in turn affect consumer perception of the finished product. Higher volume tends to be associated with a more aerated crumb and superior texture. With the Volscan Profiler, bread manufacturers can control production more rigorously and rapidly eliminate inconsistency, resulting in greater consumer satisfaction and increased profitability.

Bread producers must test bake each batch of flour, to ensure that all bread is made to a uniformly high quality. Insufficient loaf volume at the test stage indicates either very weak or very strong flour, or an imbalance of enzyme activity. This information is then used to modify the dough mix, so that the finished product can be handled correctly by automatic slicing machines, and can be packed into standard sized bags. The Volscan Profiler can help to speed up this process, to achieve the optimum dough mix rapidly and efficiently.

The Volscan Profiler works by mounting the loaf at each end, and parameters such as flour weight, bread type and shape are recorded by the software. The bread is then automatically weighed and a laser measures the contours of the product at given intervals while it rotates. Previous methods to calculate dough volume include seed displacement, in which the amount of rape seed or pearl barley packed around the loaf in a standard container is measured. This method is time consuming and unreliable due to seed clumping, moisture absorption and potential crushing of the product. Conversely, the Volscan Profiler offers manufacturers a non-contact assessment, the results of which can be obtained in under sixty seconds.

Once the Volscan Profiler has completed its test, bread volume, length, maximum width, maximum height, height of the maximum width and width of the maximum height measurements are instantly archived. This then automatically calculates the volume yield of the bread. The data may be viewed in 2D or 3D, to allow visual comparisons with previous archived measurements. Controlled, repeatable analysis not only provides unambiguous quality assessment standards but also offers precision in physical characterization.

The Volscan Profiler is just one of Stable Micro Systems’ wide range of texture analysis fixtures that are designed for use in the bakery sector. Others include the Dobraszczyk Roberts dough inflation system and the Bread V Squeeze rig for bread springiness. All Stable Micro Systems’ products can be custom-made according to individual specification.


Delicious Living

May 1, 2008

Chocolate, green tea lead superfood revolution

The research on flavonols, in particular those found in green tea and chocolate, is clearly becoming an exciting field. The weight-loss market seems to be a big focus for these flavonols, as well as cardiovascular function and, more recently, cognitive function. Mark J Tallon, PhD, presents the latest research and applications

Ingredient suppliers telling customers 1,2 or 1,3-diphenylpropane (flavonol)-based compounds can boost health can say goodbye to their sales potential. However, tell them that in real-world language — chocolate enhances cognitive performance, prostate health and circulation — and business will be booming. Flavonols are indeed chemicals but how you market them is key. More importantly to the future success of the sector is science, which ultimately drives marketing claims.

Perhaps one of the most fortuitous discoveries is the link between health and once forbidden foods such as chocolate, wine, green tea and whole host of exotic and familiar fruits. The food-science industry owes this consumer boost in awareness to flavonols and the emerging science role related to weight loss and cardiovascular health.

Green tea has been a big winner in the wellness market and, recently, the weight-loss category. Although green tea may have some functional benefits, providing a standardised dose per serving is difficult, which has directed the research focus on its active flavonols, namely epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG). Recent data from human studies indicate that the consumption of green tea and green-tea extracts may help reduce body weight, mainly body fat, by increasing thermogenesis (calories lost as heat) and fat oxidation. However, few human studies have investigated the metabolic effects of the most predominant tea catechin EGCG. In an attempt to overcome this data void, researchers have been trying to assess the potential mechanism behind the ability of green tea to influence weight loss.1

In a randomised double blind, placebo-controlled, crossover trial, six overweight men were given 300mg EGCG/day for two days. Fasting and postprandial changes in energy expenditure (EE) and substrate oxidation (use of carbohydrates, protein and fat for energy) were assessed. Resting EE did not differ between EGCG and placebo, although respiratory quotient (a measure of fuel source) was significantly lower with EGCG compared to the placebo. This suggests an increased reliance on fat as a source of energy. These findings also suggest that EGCG alone has the potential to increase fat oxidation in men, and may therefore contribute to the anti-obesity effects of green tea. However, more studies with a greater sample size and a broader range of age and BMI are needed to define the optimum dose.

In a similar study from the School of Health Sciences, University of South Australia researchers evaluated the metabolic effects of EGCG supplementation, but also when combined with a programme of regular aerobic exercise in overweight/obese post-menopausal women.2

Thirty-eight women exercised at moderate intensity, walking three times per week for 45 minutes at 75 per cent maximum heart rate, and took 150mg EGCG (Teavigo) or placebo twice daily for 12 weeks. Blood parameters (lipids, glucose and insulin), blood pressure, heart rate and arterial function were assessed at 0, 6 and 12 weeks. Body composition including abdominal fat was assessed at weeks 0 and 12.

Waist circumference, total body fat, abdominal fat and intra-abdominal adipose tissue were reduced in both groups, with no difference between placebo and EGCG. EGCG did, however, significantly decrease resting heart rate and reduced plasma glucose in subjects with impaired glucose tolerance. These results suggest that moderate consumption of EGCG can improve the health status of overweight individuals undergoing regular exercise by reducing heart rate and plasma glucose concentrations. Loss of body fat, however, may require a higher intake, prolonged use of EGCG, other catechins or addition of metabolic stimulants.

An apple a day
Recent evidence suggests that there is a modicum of truth in those words, at least for the obese. In a well controlled trial conducted in Japan on 71 moderately obese male and female subjects with a body mass index ranging from 23 to 30, researchers evaluated the efficacy of 12-week intake of polyphenols extracted from apples and hop bract (600mg/day).3

Over a 12-week period, the supplementation of polyphenol-containing capsules significantly decreased total cholesterol and LDL-cholesterol levels. The effects of the apple polyphenol-containing capsules were more marked than those of the hop bract polyphenol-containing capsules. However, what was very interesting is that the visceral fat and the level of adiponectin (which regulates glucose and fatty acid storage) in the group administered apple polyphenols improved compared to controls. These results demonstrate that apple polyphenols can regulate fat metabolism in healthy subjects with a relatively high body mass index. Further work in nonobese and overweight subjects are warranted, especially when integrated with a calorie-controlled diet.

The dark side of health
Dark chocolate has been big news on the health platform front due to its flavonol content in the form of cocoa. Recent promotion from Nestlé in Australia may be a sign of where the industry is moving in relation to suggested use and functionality of chocolate.

In a study from Chiba University in Japan, researchers assessed the effects of flavonoid-rich dark chocolate in healthy subjects on coronary circulation, which may have applications in cardiovascular disease states.4 The randomised, single-blind design of the study was conducted over two weeks in 39 healthy men. Subjects were randomly assigned a daily intake of either flavonoid-rich dark chocolate (45g including cacao polyphenol 550 mg/day, 200 kcal) or nonflavonoid white chocolate (35g, including cacao polyphenol 0 mg/day, 140 kcal) as a control. Assessment of coronary circulation and oxidative stress was made before and after two weeks of intake.

Flavonoid-rich dark chocolate consumption significantly improved coronary circulation compared to nonflavonoid white chocolate consumption. Intake of dark (but not white) chocolate, MDA-LDL, triglyceride (TG) and heart rate (HR) significantly influenced the change of coronary circulation after two weeks of intake.

The study authors concluded that flavonoid-rich dark chocolate could significantly improve coronary circulation in healthy adults, independent of changes in oxidative stress parameters, blood pressure and lipid profile, whereas nonflavonoid white chocolate had no such effects.

Chocolate a no-go for bone health?
A research group from Western Australia studied the relation between chocolate consumption and measurements of whole-body and regional bone density as well as strength in 1,001 women aged 70-85 years.5 Bone density and strength were measured, as was the frequency of chocolate by questionnaire and condensed into three categories: or = 1 time/day.

The results of the investigation suggest that the higher frequency of chocolate consumption was related to lower bone density and strength. Daily chocolate consumption, compared to those eating it less than once a week, was associated with a 3.1 per cent lower whole-body bone density, with similarly lower bone density of the total hip, femoral neck, tibia, and heel; and with lower bone strength in the tibia and the heel. Adjustment for covariates did not influence interpretation of the results. Older women who consume chocolate daily had lower bone density and strength. Suggesting confirmation of these findings could have important implications for prevention of osteoporotic fracture.

However, this study did not account for the type or flavonol and calcium content, which is known to significantly influence health and specifically bone function. Furthermore, the measurement of dietary intakes from recall and questionnaire is notoriously inaccurate; as such these results should be approached with caution.

The research on flavonols is clearly becoming an exciting field and the studies above confirm just a small portion of the potential impact. Extracts from a variety of plant and botanical sources have been show to significantly affect lipolysis and weight control, including Sauropus androgenus,6Nelumbo nucifera,7Cissus quadrangularis,8Rosa canina,9 as well as other polyphenolics and isoflavones.10,11 The weight-loss market seems to be a big focus for these flavonols, as well as cardiovascular function and, more recently, cognitive function.12

Flavonols will need to be looked upon in the context of EU and nutrient profiling. Nutrient profiling will set the stage for what level of fat and sugar will be defined as 'healthy' and, as such, a company wanting to maintain a health claim based on active content (ie, flavonols) must deliver them in a healthy food matrix (product/formulation). Coca via and other premium functional foods delivered in a potentially nonhealthy format (high in sugar) may struggle to retain their health claims based on flavonol research. Therefore, the use of innovative food technology to reformulate many European products toward lowering 'nonhealthy' components (fats/sugar), yet retaining indulgent taste, will be a significant challenge. The flavonol market, as delivered in supplement format, will remain strong but the challenge of a mass market related to health claims for the functional-foods and beverage markets will be a significant factor in the years to follow.

Mark J Tallon, PhD, is chief science officer of NutriSciences, a London-based consultancy firm specialising in health-claim substantiation, product development and technical writing. Respond:

Recent study results demonstrate that apple polyphenols can regulate fat metabolism in healthy subjects with a relatively high body mass index

1. Boschmann M, Thielecke F. The effects of epigallocatechin-3-gallate on thermogenesis and fat oxidation in obese men: a pilot study. J Am Coll Nutr. 2007; 26(4): 389S-395S.
2. Hill AM, et al. Can EGCG reduce abdominal fat in obese subjects?J Am Coll Nutr. 2007; 26(4):396S-402S.
3. Nagasako-Akazome Y, et al. Apple polyphenols influence cholesterol metabolism in healthy subjects with relatively high body mass index. J Oleo Sci. 2007; 56(8): 417-28.
4. Shiina Y, et al. Acute effect of oral flavonoid-rich dark chocolate intake on coronary circulation, as compared with non-flavonoid white chocolate, by transthoracic Doppler echocardiography in healthy adults. Int J Cardiol. 2007 Nov 26 [Epub ahead of print]
5. Hodgson JM, et al. Chocolate consumption and bone density in older women. Am J Clin Nutr. 2008; 87(1):175-80.
6. Yu SF, et al. 3-O-beta-D-glucosyl-(1-->6)-beta-D-glucosyl-kaempferol isolated from Sauropus androgenus reduces body weight gain in Wistar rats. Biol Pharm Bull. 2006; 29(12): 2510-3.
7. Ohkoshi E, et al.Constituents from the leaves of Nelumbo nucifera stimulate lipolysis in the white adipose tissue of mice. Planta Med. 2007; 73(12):1255-9.
8. Oben JE, et al. The effect of Cissus quadrangularis (CQR-300) and a Cissus formulation (CORE) on obesity and obesity-induced oxidative stress. Lipids Health Dis. 2007 4;6:4.
9. Ninomiya K, et al. Potent anti-obese principle from Rosa canina: structural requirements and mode of action of trans-tiliroside. Bioorg Med Chem Lett. 2007 1;17(11):3059-64.
10. da-Silva WS, et al. The small polyphenolic molecule kaempferol increases cellular energy expenditure and thyroid
hormone activation. Diabetes. 2007; 56(3):767-76. 11. Aubertin-Leheudre M, et al. Six months of isoflavone supplement increases fat-free mass in obese-sarcopenic postmenopausal women: a randomized double-blind controlled trial. Eur J Clin Nutr. 2007; 61(12):1442-4.
12. Bisson JF, et al. Effects of long-term administration of a cocoa polyphenolic extract (Acticoa powder) on cognitive performances in aged rats. Br J Nutr. 2008; 8:1-8 [Epub ahead of print]

Fat loss is the new weight-management buzz

Harry Preuss, MD, MACN, CNS, is professor of physiology, medicine and pathology at Georgetown University Medical Center in Washington, DC. He is past member of three NIH councils; author of more than 600 medical publications; and co-author of the new book, The Fat Loss Pharmacy (Broadway Books, 2007). He takes our questions on ingredients for weight management

Fi: A core concept of The Fat Loss Pharmacy is that 'weight loss' is not the concept people are looking for, it's really 'fat loss.' The metabolic goal is to reduce fat.

HP: The three biggest problems ailing the ageing demographic are that most people want to lose fat, gain muscle and increase bone-mass density. The idea is to lose weight but not muscle because muscle is the ultimate calorie burner. However, when individuals work out and take supplements to increase muscle mass, they want to lose weight, or in this case fat, but they will be disappointed with the scales unless they pay attention to their belt size or clothing size. This is one of the messages I try to get across.

I did a study on African-American women taking chromium, specifically looking at body composition and weight loss for a control group and a chromium group. The chromium group didn't lose much weight during the few months of the study. But when we looked at fat vs muscle loss, the women in the placebo group lost 60 per cent of that weight as muscle protein, which was alarming, but when we added chromium it was only 10 per cent. So right then and there, I said 'anyone on caloric-restricted diets or appetite suppressors should be on something like chromium.'

Fi: Why chromium?

HP: It probably works because of its influence on the insulin system. Basically, if one has a disturbed insulin system, the tendency is to lose muscle and gain fat. As one gets older, it is common to become more insulin resistant. Associated with that is the tendency to lose muscle mass and to gain fat, usually around the middle. Part of our goal is to reverse this frustrating and health-damaging progression of events common in ageing.

The other benefit is, the rats I supply with chromium live 20 per cent longer. The chromium not only keeps the muscle on and the fat off, it may help in a number of other bodily systems that lead to longevity.

Fi: It's said you need a minimum of two studies with consumer-relevant benefits to launch and market a product. How do you feel about that?

HP: The first goal is for a compound to be safe. And then it has to be effective. If an ingredient has some risk associated with it, it better be darned effective to even consider putting it on the market.

An example is ephedra, perhaps the best weight-loss substance out there. But we couldn't get rational people in one room to talk about the benefits and risks. We accept that Tylenol causes a lot of deaths, but the benefits are so great that it's still marketed. Dietary supplements don't get the same consideration from certain sectors of the health industry, which seems unfair; after all, over-consumption of something as benign as water can kill a person.

After safety, then one has to show a benefit. I'd love to see more research. But these poor guys out there in the natural-supplements field have difficulty getting patents on products, and the minute we do research our competitors grab it and run with it. If there was some way for people to do the research and get a financial benefit for a defined length of time, they'd be more apt to put the money into research. But there is a wait-and-see attitude for the other guy to do the work first, and then the copycats jump on their coat tails.

If something seems to work, it is essential to find a good supplier, one that you can trust — look at the hoodia market, you don't know what you're getting half the time. Another example is HCA compounds, the totally calcium-type are poorly absorbed. There is a checklist: find the correct product; make sure it's product the supplier is claiming and at the right dose, and then, if it is a weight-loss study, pay attention to fat loss and muscle mass. Lastly, for optimal success, the study subjects must comply.

Fi: EGCG, the primary catechin in green tea, seems to burn more calories, in particular with caffeine.

HP: Some claim it works on the fat, specifically releasing fat from storage. Most go with the notion that it increases metabolism by burning more calories. There are claims that it burns 80-90cal/day more. Caffeine is an important component to get a maximum effect, just as with ephedra. Of course, increased caffeine also increases the probability of negative side effects. In one study, researchers tried to increase the dose of caffeine to make it more effective, but 90mg EGCG and 50mg caffeine was as effective as going with higher doses.

Fi: Is caffeine better in combination, or can it work alone just fine?

HP: You could use caffeine alone. But there are so many arguments about caffeine that are not settled. It can raise blood pressure, but it comes back to normal after a while just like ephedra. Caffeine causes sleeping problems and can cause arrhythmias in persons with a history of irregular heartbeats. It's a good weight-loss compound, but until there is more information, it has limitations.

Fi: CLA also seems to work on fat.

HP: In 1997, Michael Pariza's laboratory at the Food Research Institute at the University of Wisconsin, Madison, showed that mice fed a diet supplemented with CLA ended up with 60 per cent less body fat and 14 per cent more lean body mass than mice not fed CLA. In that same study, cellular analysis showed that CLA might stop fat from being deposited in fat cells, that it could help break down fat cells, and that it may help burn up fatty acids in both fat cells and muscle cells.

Fi: Why do some studies show that CLA doesn't work?

HP: I question, did the researchers use the right prep, the right dose and the right timing? Did they check fat and muscle composition? It is common for some exercise-study participants to actually gain weight, which is not always a marker of failure. And, again, compliance is very important. All these things can mean the difference between a successful study and a mediocre study.

Then there is the way in which the study is evaluated. For instance, the FDA wants you to use intention to treat analysis — say you start out with 40 patients in control, 40 in treatment. The study is to go two months, but maybe five drop out in each group at two weeks and five drop out at four weeks. FDA wants you to include those dropouts in the data. It doesn't affect the placebo group, but it mucks up the data in the treatment group. That's a set-up to get negative results.

Fi: You've done research on HCA, which appears to lower the level of a key enzyme that helps sugars and starches turn into fat. Explain this mechanism.

HP: Carbohydrates are metabolised into two-carbon chains, then the two-carbon chain is converted into fat. Hydroxycitric acid, HCA, prevents the formation of two-carbon chains so the precursor that builds up fat is prevented. HCA has two major effects that are well known — appetite suppression and blocking carbohydrates from turning into fats.

The Natural Fat-loss PharmacySelling weight differently
Harry Preuss, MD, co-authored The Fat Loss Pharmacy, aimed at re-thinking the way we look at weight management.

Fi: Is that at all similar to the way carb blockers work?

HP: With carb blockers, there is a deprivation of carb calories. It works because of so-called resistant starches, which are basically starches that one digests right away, go distally into the intestines and are fermented. With carb blockers, in a sense you're doing that already — you're preventing absorption of absorbable carbohydrates. When rats in our lab were fed carb blockers, blood pressure came down, they were thinner, a little leaner, and had healthier cholesterol levels.

Starch blockers are now being baked right into food. This could well be the future. I love spaghetti. I'd love to find a noodle that tastes the same but has starch blockers. In my mind, if it's possible, it's definitely a good thing.

Fi: Is chitosan different from other soluble fibres? Or are all soluble fibres the same?

HP: Chitosan can work like others fibres because it is filling, and satiety slows absorption. But also because of charge and solubility, chitosan specifically grabs onto fats and can keep fats in place so the body doesn't absorb them. Chitosan, from crushed sea shells, is used to pick up oil spills in the ocean. It is the same concept for the body that once in the gut, chitosan collects and absorbs fat.

Fi: Why advocate muscle builders in a weight programme? What's the story with the branched-chain amino acids (BCAAs)?

HP: As one gets older, there is a tendency to accumulate fat and lose muscle. The problem is muscle is a calorie burner that'll help keep the fat off. At the same time, muscle loss causes frailty, which can lead to falls, especially for elderly women. Bone loss is common, which is why there are so many little old bent-over women walking around, but muscle loss also contributes to falls.

Fi: Herbal appetite suppressants are intriguing, especially when accompanied by stories of locals — African bushmen eating hoodia or the 'famine food' of India, caralluma. Do hoodia and caralluma work similarly?

HP: It's the same story, but there are a few different major compounds within them that are believed to do the work. Hoodia could be a good compound, but there are no clinicals on hoodia, so there is not much more I can say about it.

Caralluma has one or two studies, which is more than hoodia, but the herb lacks good publicity. I've spoken with manufacturers about hoodia and caralluma, the problem for both is the cost. Researchers haven't found a way to cultivate either herb in a large enough quantity to serve the world, which is why it is expensive.

Fi: You've conducted research on chromium, HCA, Gymnema sylvestre. What are your current research interests?

HP: I just reported one at Expo West, looking at maitake mushroom fraction SX, an insulin sensitiser. It has properties similar to chromium. The most interesting find is that it works on the renin angiotensin system. Renin is a substance made and released by the kidney that makes angiotensin. This process requires the aid of a lung enzyme to create angiotensin II, which is a vasoconstrictor — in other words, angiotensin II causes high blood pressure.

The pharmaceutical industry introduced ACE inhibitors, which block production of antiogensun II and therefore lower blood pressure. Recent evidence shows that other than vasoconstricting and causing elevations in blood pressure, angiotensin II contributes to atherosclerosis by releasing inflammatory, pro-oxidant cytokines. Our research shows that both the niacin-bound chromium and maitake fraction SX inhibits the conversion enzyme, which makes them ACE inhibitors similar to prescription drugs, but safer.

We are also working on metabolic syndrome including weight gain and the cardiovascular system, which are tied together with metabolic syndrome and fat mass. I expect further research in this arena, if the company can generate the funds.

Fi: If you were to advise a manufacturer to bundle some of these ingredients for the greatest benefit for the greatest number, which ingredients would you advise to include in a formula? Would you cover all the bases — fat busters, insulin regulators, carb inhibitors, appetite suppressors, muscle builders?

HP: One sharp company made their fat-loss pill based on ingredients in the first five chapters of my book. Personally, I've been intrigued by combining appetite suppressants like HCA with caralluma. Supposedly, we think they suppress appetite via different mechanisms so they could be better than either alone. I'd like to do studies to find out if my assumptions are true. Carb blockers work with heavy-carb meals to block starch absorption, while L-arabinose blocks sugar absorption. If a meal is high in fat, I might use fibres such as chitosan in it.

For an online exclusive on the glycaemic index and its growing role in weight control, please visit our web site.
These ideas are ancillary to other research. I prefer to work with appetite suppressants that work on the insulin system. The goal is to drive weight loss toward fat loss, rather than muscle. The way to do this is to add an insulin sensitiser like maitake SX, chromium or cinnamon. Still, there's no perfect formula right now, which is why the latest book includes how each individual ingredient works.

Functional fat-loss ingredients
Fat Busters
EGCG green tea extract
CLA conjugated linoleic acid
HCA hydroxycitric acid
MCT medium-chain triglycerides

Insulin Regulators
Carbohydrate inhibitors
Starch blockers: white kidney bean, wheat, hibiscus
Sugar blocker: L-arabinose

Fat blockers
Chitosan and other soluble fibres

Appetite suppressors
5-HTP (5-hydroxy-L-tryptophan)
Cacti: caralluma and hoodia

Muscle builders
HMB hydroxy methylbutyrate
BCAA branched-chain amino acids

Citrus aurantium

seeing weight differently Harry Preuss, MD, co-authored The Natural Fat-Loss Pharmacy, aimed at re-thinking the way we look at weight management.

FuzeHow suppliers make it from supplements to foods

Since the advent of the 21st century, the holy grail of functional-ingredients suppliers has been to migrate from the dietary-supplements world into foods and beverages. Attaining GRAS status is the obvious first step in the process, but differences remain between the markets — and in how ingredients are marketed.

"It's a completely different sale," says Greg Drew, director of the food and beverage group at Pharmachem, which markets Phase 2/StarchLite, a white-bean extract that reduces starch digestion and hence both calories and blood-sugar spikes. "Food companies have far more dependence on good science and regulatory. There's no gray area. That's what separates us from the snake-oil shadows of the supplements industry, from the perspective of big food."

Phase 2 was launched in the supplements aisles in 2001, and in 2007, attained GRAS status to pave its way into the food world. It also received authorization from the FDA for a structure/function claim that the ingredient may 'assist in weight control' and 'reduce the enzymatic digestion of dietary starches.'

Drew says Pharmachem also conducted intensive sensory evaluations to demonstrate no change in taste or texture with foods incorporating StarchLite.

Although the ingredient only works in cutting calories from starchy foods, Drew says Pharmachem was 'surprised' that food companies are putting the ingredient into complementary items — in butter instead of bread, or ketchup instead of French fries.

"We're not telling them what types of products to formulate with," Drew says. "We're showing them the data and they're determining where they can put it."

A slightly different tack is being taken by InterHealth Nutraceuticals with its weight-management ingredients SuperCitrimax and ChromeMate. The company creates finished-goods functional prototypes to present to food firms.

"It requires a lot of homework," says Paul Dijkstra, CEO of InterHealth. "We felt beverages were the easiest medium for functionality at first. We have to look at stability in different pHs, sensory data, bioavailability, what it does in the beverage and on the palate. All these are not relevant in a pill or powder or tablet."

InterHealth's efforts were rewarded when Coca-Cola used its ingredients in its Fuze beverage line.

—Todd Runestad

Select suppliers: nutrients to entertain the brain

Fibersol-2 digestion-resistant maltodextrin is a highly soluble fibre, licensed in North America from Matsutani. It is stable, has low viscosity, and is transparent in solution with virtually no flavour.

Berkem Labs
Svetol is the first green coffee-bean extract drawn on natural coffee benefits.

Vitasugar prebiotic fibre is a starch-related oligosaccharide and low-cal sweetener.

NeOpuntia is derived from the Opuntia ficus-indica cactus using a chemical- and solvent-free process. The fibre source works in a similar way to chitosan by binding fat in the gut.

Viscofiber is an all-natural, concentrated, soluble dietary fibre made from oat grain. Currently, it is available for supplements only, but will soon be suitable for a range of foods and beverages.

Tonalin brand conjugated linoleic acid (CLA) inhibits lipoprotein lipase, an enzyme that breaks down fat from diets. Thus, CLA reduces the amount of fat that is deposited and stored.

Litesse polydextrose is a soluble prebiotic fibre sweetener low in calories. Fibrex has a unique composition of both soluble and insoluble fibres. It is gluten-free.

Fabuless is a patented oil-in-water emulsion that can be incorporated into foods like dairy or supplements. It triggers the natural appetite-control mechanism. Tea-vigo is natural green-tea catechin EGCG with a purity of a minimum of 94 per cent on dry basis.

FucoPure brand Caralluma fimbriata extract is for supplements, an edible succulent used for appetite suppression.

Glanbia Nutritionals
Prolibra is a patent-pending whey mineral protein that induces fat loss while maintaining lean body mass.

Humanetics Corp
7-Keto DHEA plays a role in up-regulating key thermogenic enzymes in the body, enhancing resting metabolic rate.

SuperCitrimax brand hydroxycitric acid helps suppress appetite and inhibit fat production without stimulating the central nervous system. It is GRAS affirmed. ChromeMate is a patented form of niacin-bound chromium polynicotinate said to increase chromium safely.

Slendesta potato extract is standardised to its active component, PI2, which induces satiety by enhancing the release of the signaling peptide called cholecystokinin.

Kuber Impex
Caralluma and other native botanicals from India.

Lipid Nutrition
Clarinol brand CLA reduces body fat, improves body composition and increases lean-muscle mass.

FiberAid can be easily formulated into foods and beverages because it is freely soluble, stable at a wide temperature and pH range, and has little sensory impact.

National Starch
Nutriose soluble prebiotic fibre is suitable for beverages, dairy and sauces. It adds texture to reduced-sugar-and-fat recipes.

Nutraceuticals International
FucoPure fucoxanthin from Japanese wakame seaweed is said to work by burning abdominal fat by adaptive thermogenesis within white adipose tissue.

Advantra-Z brand of Citrus aurantium stimulates thermogenesis, reduces weight, increases ratio of lean-muscle mass to total body mass and suppresses appetite.

Nutrition 21
Chromax brand chromium picolinate is a highly absorbable form of chromium that helps promote healthy blood sugar, fight food cravings and support cardio health.

Phase 2 starch blocker for supplements and StarchLite for food applications is a proprietary white-bean extract.

ForsLean is a patented phytonutrient supplement ingredient for weight management that promotes lean body mass. It won the NutrAward for best new product of 2001.

Specialty Nutrition Group
LipoxanThin brand fucoxanthin is cultivated from brown marine vegetables.

Moby: Veganism is a way of life for this Grammy-nominated musician

Moby, 42, has been a vegan for more than 20 years. As a New York City DJ and a vocal advocate for animal rights, he is also widely credited for bringing electronica to the mainstream with the album Play. His newest album, Last Night, hit shelves in April.

  • Delicious Living: Why did you decide to go vegan?

    Moby: Growing up in Connecticut, breakfast was Frosted Flakes that I would actually put sugar on, lunch was McDonald's, and dinner was usually meat loaf with egg noodles. But as I got older, I became more socially and politically aware, and I started trying to reconcile the fact that although I loved animals, I was also eating them. I feel very simply that if you have a choice between one action that causes suffering and one that doesn't you should always try to choose the action that doesn't cause suffering. So I guess when I was around 19, I became a vegetarian; that same logic eventually led me to become a vegan.

  • How do you discuss veganism with meat eaters?

    When I first went vegan I was very judgmental of people who chose to eat meat. As time passed, I realized that I wasn't necessarily being a good apologist for my beliefs; I was just annoying people. So I've become a lot less militant. I'm still a vegan, but I'm much less likely to judge people who disagree with me. I found what's most effective is actually talking to people rather than trying to be didactic.

  • It must be difficult to follow when you're on the road.

    It's gotten a lot easier. When I started touring in the early nineties, being a vegan was very difficult. But now almost every decent-size town or city has a health food store or a vegetarian restaurant. The only thing I miss is the convenience airport food. I do travel with my own food, but it's the one time when I really wish I could just put my veganism on hold and go to Sbarro for a piece of pizza.

  • Do you have a favorite meal?

    There's a restaurant in Los Angeles called Real Food Daily that has vegan tacos. Every time I'm in the city, I probably eat them three times a day.

  • Does your new album incorporate your ideals?

    Politics and social causes are important to me, but whenever I've written music that's carried a strong message, the music has suffered. So instead, I just make music that's personal and subjective.

Moby's vegan resources

Vegetarian: A person who doesn't eat any type of meat product from any type of animal.
Vegan: A vegetarian who doesn't eat any animal products, including butter, dairy, eggs, and honey. Also abstains from wearing leather, fur, or any other animal-derived product.

Apples and juice may protect arteries

Apples and apple juice may have the same have cardiovascular protective properties as purple grapes, say French researchers.

Processing the fruit into juice has the potential to increase the bioavailability of the naturally-occurring compounds and anti-oxidants found in the whole fruit, says Kelly Decorde of the University of Montpelier, France. The study, published in Molecular Nutrition and Food Research, said aortic plaque was evaluated to determine the effectiveness in decreasing plaque that is associated with atherosclerosis — or "hardening" of the arteries caused by multiple plaques within the arteries.

According to the researchers, this study demonstrates that processing apples and purple grapes into juice modifies the protective effect of their phenolics against diet induced oxidative stress and early atherosclerosis in hypercholesterolemic hamsters. "These results show for the first time that long-term consumption of anti-oxidants supplied by apples and purple grapes, especially phenolic compounds, prevents the development of atherosclerosis in hamsters, and that the processing can have a major impact on the potential health effects of a product."