Prevent cancer with anthocyanins

Wednesday, March 30, 2011 by: Dr. David Jockers
Tags: anthocyanins, cancer prevention, health news

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(NaturalNews) Free radical damage is one of the leading causes for accelerated aging and cancer cell formation. When cells are exposed to heavy amounts of free radicals without sufficient cell signaling processes, they develop genetic mutations that replicate abnormally. Anti-oxidants are nature's defense against free-radicals. Some of nature's most powerful anti-oxidants are a class of polyphenols called anthocyanins.

Many plants are exposed to direct sunlight and ultra violet rays all day long. This constant biological challenge has forced these plants to form powerful free radical scavenging anti-oxidant polyphenols in order to protect themselves. The anthocyanin class of polyphenols is an especially strong protective component.

Anthocyanin molecules take their name from their deep blue or purple color. Cyan is the Greek word for dark blue. This color is derived at the cellular level through very unique double bond structures. These unique components have allowed their host plants to thrive in an environment of direct sunlight; they act as a natural sunscreen through absorbing blue-green and UV light. This process of photo inhibition dramatically reduces stress on the plant. Additionally, these components act as anti-oxidants with very quick and effective free radical scavenging effects.

Scientists have found over 600 forms of anthocyanins naturally occurring in our ecosystem. The most common form of anthocyanin is cyaniding-3-glucoside (C3G), which has been shown through human and animal studies to directly influence gene expression. C3G has been shown to selectively up-regulate genes that provide more protection while down-regulating genes that cause damage such as pro-inflammatory mediators.

Most people in our society are chronically inflamed due to excessive free radical formation, lowered anti-oxidant status, nutritional deficiencies, poor fatty acid balance, elevated toxins, elevated mental & emotional stress, and elevated physical & neurological stress. When these factors are present, the body produces higher levels of inflammatory mediators such as cytokines that produce inflammation and tissue damage.

Under inflammatory conditions certain cells will trigger oncogenes, which are genes that induce cancer-cell reproduction. The greater the acceleration rate of oncogene formation is the faster the rate of cancer growth. Once a cancer cell gets formed it has a strong potential to spread into local tissue and metastasize into other areas. The body's own natural defense against cancer is programmed cell death called apoptosis. Anthocyanins have been found to suppress the inflammatory conditions that create oncogenes while promoting cancer cell apoptosis.

Cancer cells are typically in what is called an "undifferentiated" state when they are formed. This means they do not have any specific functional characteristics like a normal liver or skin cell. C3G has been shown in studies to induce normal differentiation of certain cancers such as melanoma cells. This is very important because cancer cells that differentiate are dramatically less dangerous than undifferentiated cells.

Incorporating More Anthocyanins in Your Diet:
1.Make a shake every day with coconut milk and anthocyanin rich berries such as blueberries, raspberries, blackberries, acai berries, elderberries, &/or bilberries.
2.Snack on red cabbage, make red-cabbage sauerkraut, or juice red cabbage.
3.Use exotic foods such as purple cauliflower, purple corn, & purple broccoli.
4.Take a supplement with berry extracts in it.

[Editor`s Note: NaturalNews is strongly against the use of all forms of animal testing. We fully support implementation of humane medical experimentation that promotes the health and wellbeing of all living creatures.]
Stokel, Kirk. `Broad-Spectrum Disease Defense with Novel Berry Extract,` Life Extenstion Magazine. March/April 2011 pg 83-89.

About the author

Dr. David Jockers owns and operates Exodus Health Center in Kennesaw, Ga. He is a Maximized Living doctor. His expertise is in weight loss, customized nutrition & exercise, & structural corrective chiropractic care. For more information go to To find a Maximized Living doctor near you go to

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