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Colorful Anthocyanins Fight Colon Cancer
Anthocyanins—compounds that give red, violet, and blue plants their color—offer powerful colon cancer-fighting ability, according to recent research.*
Various extracts containing anthocyanins were tested on cultured human colon cancer cells. Using extracts from grapes, radishes, purple corn, chokeberries, bilberries, purple carrots, elderberries, and other plants, scientists determined the amount needed from each to decrease the growth of the cancer cells by half. Purple corn extract was the most potent, followed by chokeberry and bilberry. Anthocyanins from radish and black carrots slowed the growth of cancer cells anywhere from 50% to 80%; however, anthocyanins from purple corn and chokeberries completely stopped the cancer growth, as well as killing 20% of the cancerous cells. In rats, anthocyanins from bilberries and chokeberries reduced the signs of colon tumors by 70% and 60%, respectively.
“All fruits and vegetables that are rich in anthocyanins have compounds that can slow down the growth of colon cancer cells,” the authors concluded.
Reference * Available at: http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2007-08/osu-ctc081507.php. Accessed August 27, 2007.