Otago Daily Times

Fruit trumps tablets, study finds

- JOHN GIBB Health · Dietary Supplements · Medications · Medicine · Healthy Living · Healthy Food · Fruits · College · Diets · Nutrition · Pharmacology · Higher Education · University of Otago · Dunedin · Christchurch · Otago Region · Free Radical Design

A DUNEDIN­LED study has high­lighted the ben­e­fits of eat­ing ki­wifruit and other whole fruit for adults low in di­etary vi­ta­min C.

The Uni­ver­sity of Otago re­search showed that feel­ings of vi­tal­ity were boosted by eat­ing two ki­wifruit a day for two weeks.

And the ef­fects of eat­ing the fruit were stronger than for other peo­ple tak­ing vi­ta­min C mainly through a sup­ple­ment tablet.

Re­searchers from the psy­chol­ogy depart­ment, in Dunedin, and the uni­ver­sity’s Cen­tre for Free Rad­i­cal Re­search in Christchur­ch ran a placebo­con­trolled test of whether in­creas­ing vi­ta­min C through whole fruit or tablets could im­prove feel­ings of vi­tal­ity or ‘‘zest for life’’.

Re­searchers stud­ied 167 par­tic­i­pants aged 18 to 35 with low lev­els of vi­ta­min C and ran­domly di­vided them into three groups; a ki­wifruit group, a vi­ta­min C tablet group (250 mg) and a placebo­tablet group.

Each day for four weeks, they were asked to eat two ki­wifruit, a fruit very high in vi­ta­min C, or take a tablet.

Vi­ta­min C lev­els in the ki­wifruit group and vi­ta­min C tablet group in­creased to nor­mal within two weeks.

How­ever, lead au­thor As­so­ciate Prof Tam­lin Con­ner, of Otago, said the ben­e­fits of the whole fruit, ex­clud­ing skin, were stronger and oc­curred for more peo­ple, less­en­ing fa­tigue and im­prov­ing mood and well­be­ing, whereas the tablet’s ben­e­fits were mainly in those ‘‘quite de­fi­cient in vi­ta­min C’’.

The study was pub­lished in open ac­cess jour­nal Nu­tri­ents.

The re­search was funded by ki­wifruit mar­ket­ing com­pany Ze­spri, but was un­der­taken in­de­pen­dently.

 ?? PHOTO: GRE­GOR RICHARD­SON ?? Fruit ben­e­fits . . . As­so­ciate Prof Tam­lin Con­ner has found health ben­e­fits in ki­wifruit.
PHOTO: GRE­GOR RICHARD­SON Fruit ben­e­fits . . . As­so­ciate Prof Tam­lin Con­ner has found health ben­e­fits in ki­wifruit.

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