It is a well-known fact that the fruits and vegetables we consume on a daily basis as part of our intake of food do contain a number of vitamins, minerals and other nutrients that aid in providing the energy for the body.
One of the many nutrients found in these foods is called as bioflavonoids, a group of naturally occurring phytochemicals present in the fruits and plants. These phytochemicals act primarily as flavorants and pigments. The common features present in the molecular structure of the fruits and vegetables help recognize these bioflavonoids and their unique features.
The group of bioflavonoids can be further sub-divided in to many categories such as – isoflavones, flavans, flavanols, flavones, flavonones and anthocyanidins.
Citrus fruits are a good source for flavonones. Wine contains anthocyanidin, and soy products are a rich source of isoflavones.
It has been found that fruits like apricots, cherries, broccoli, blackberries, cantaloupe, grapes, tomatoes, papayas, grapefruit, cocoa and coffee have bioflavonoids.
Bioflavonoids provide a number of benefits to the body. It has been perceived to act as antioxidants and also play an important role in enhancing the antioxidant effects of Vitamin C.
Bioflavonoids have been subjected to a lot of research of late. It has been discovered that the bioflavonoids helped improve the capillary strength in maintaining the proper degree of permeability in the capillary well. Some of the bioflavonoids are discovered to be acting as inhibitors that prevent in formation of blood clots.
Bioflavonoids, such as quercetin and resveretrol, present in the skin of the grapes have been found to be effective in reducing the risk of heart-related diseases, especially among the people who take wine occasionally in moderate quantities.
It has been found that the effect of Vitamin C present in the food has been enhanced further if bioflavonoids are also present in the same food. Thus, some of the researchers have safely presumed that bioflavonoids present in the fruits and vegetables, irrespective of the presence of Vitamin C, provides the same benefits as can be derived from Vitamin C.
Bioflavonoids are also found to have a number of therapeutic uses.
One of the bioflavonoids, hesperidin, found mosly in the blossoms as well as peels of citrus fruits such as lemons and oranges, is found to be effective in treating abnormalities related to bleeding.
Rutin, another bioflavonoid, found mostly in buckwheat leaves, is being studied for the treatment of glaucoma and also the retinal bleeding found in some diabetic patients.