Monday, 18 November 2013

Phytochemicals and Asthma

 Phytochemials are defined as a group of chemical compound found naturally in plants, including fruits, vegetables, beans, grains, etc.
Many studies have proven that they can treat cancers and diseases, because of certain phytochemicals, but for what ever reason, there are either no clinical trials follow through or the studies can not make to stage of clinical trials. Do not expect the pharmaceutical or foods industrial companies to pay for the researches, as the discovery of the phytochemicals to cure cancers and diseases can only dampen the profits of both industries as phytochemicals can not be patented.
Asthma effects over 300 million people word wide and causes as many as 250,000 death a year. The rate has increased rapidly over last 10 year as a result of "industrial revolution" of countries in the South East Asia. Contrary to general believe, most cases of asthma are caused by allergic effects and many people suffer their first asthma attack after the age of 70.
In conventional medicine, asthma is defined as a condition of chronic airway inflammatory disease, including symptoms of airway obstruction, sudden constriction of the muscles in the walls of the bronchioles, tight chest, wheezing, coughing, etc.
In traditional Chinese medicine, Asthma is defined as a condition of either of immune-system causes of respiratory disorder due to spleen deficiency, or liver heat scorches the lung or lung qi deficiency or kidney qi deficiency, causing inflammation as resulting in breathing passages become narrow or blocked.

Types of Food to Prevent and Treat Asthma
1. Apple
Diet high in fruits and vegetables may decrease the risk of chronic diseases. In the study of Apple phytochemicals and their health benefits, found that apples have been found to have very strong antioxidant activity, inhibit cancer cell proliferation, decrease lipid oxidation, and lower cholesterol. Apples contain a variety of phytochemicals, including quercetin, catechin, phloridzin and chlorogenic acid, all of which are strong antioxidants. The phytochemical composition of apples varies greatly between different varieties of apples, and there are also small changes in phytochemicals during the maturation and ripening of the fruit(1).

2. Artichoke and Strawberries
Gallic acid (Strawberries) and caffeic acids (Artichoke) are reported to modulate allergic reactions via unknown mode(s) of action. In the stufy to evaluate whether both phenolic acids share a common mode of action with the two asthma drugs, suggest that certain anti-inflammatory phytochemicals including gallic acid and wedelolactone may modulate inflammatory allergic action via their agonism at GPR35. GPR35 may represent a target for the treatment of allergic disorders including asthma(2).

3. Flax and Sunflower seeds
Omega 3 fatty acid is types of phytochemical found abundantly in flax and sunflower seeds
In the study  to assess the relation between observed levels of omega-3 fatty acids in plasma and symptoms of asthma and atopy in children at 18 months of age, showed that omega-3 fatty acid levels were expressed in quintiles of exposure 'as treated' without reference to treatment group allocation. Wheeze ever, doctor visits for wheeze, bronchodilator use and nocturnal coughing were significantly reduced in children in the higher exposure quintiles. Serum IgE was reduced in the highest quintile but not significantly so. There was no difference in diagnosed asthma or atopy between the exposure quintiles. Although wheeze at this age may not be a good indicator of asthma in later childhood, it is encouraging that some symptoms have been reduced in children with high omega-3 fatty acid concentrations in plasma(3).

4. Tomato
Lycopene, a phytochemical found abundantly in tomato. In the study to investigate the effects of lycopene, on allergic inflammation, in a mouse model of AAD. BALB/c mice receiving lycopene supplement or control were intraperitoneally sensitised and intranasally challenged with ovalbumin (OVA) to induce AAD, found that supplementation with lycopene reduces allergic inflammation both in the lungs and systemically, by decreasing Th2 cytokine responses. Thus, lycopene supplementation may have a protective effect against asthma(4).

5. Peaches, organic orange juice
Peach contains high amount of vitamin C which may be used to prevent and treat asthma. 
In this double blind clinical trial study to evaluated 60 patients with chronic stable asthma. The patients were divided into two groups (A and B) including 30 patients in each group. group A received 1000 mg vitamin C daily and group B received placebo, found that The mean (±SD) leukocyte vitamin C level in group A at the baseline and after one month treatment with 1000 mg/day vitamin C, were 0.0903 (±0.0787) µg/108 leukocytes and 0.1400 (±0.0953) µg/108 leukocytes respectively (P<0.05). The mean (±SD) leukocyte vitamin C level in group B at the baseline and after one month administration of placebo, were 0.0867 (±0.0629) µg/108 leukocytes and 0.0805(±0.0736) µg/108 leukocytes respectively. The leukocyte vitamin C level in group A was higher than those of group B after one month treatment with vitamin C and placebo and the difference was statistically significant (P<0.05)(5)

6. Etc.


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Sources
(1) http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15140261
(2) http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22488351
(3) http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15610365
(4) http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20392623
(5) http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22592572

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