Science says sure.
In accordance with a brand new research printed within the journal Vitamins, prunes are a prebiotic meals that may restore bone loss in mice. In accordance with the research’s authors, the prebiotic results of prunes’ carbohydrates and polyphenols assist to revive bone well being.
“Each the carbohydrate element and the polyphenols throughout the prunes altered the intestine microbiota and had been related to constructive results on bone, specifically restoring bone. By definition, prebiotics are substrates that alter the composition or exercise of the microbiota and confer advantages to the well being of the person” defined Principal Investigator, Brenda Smith, Ph.D., Professor on the Indiana College College of Drugs. On this case, the profit conferred was the restoration of bone loss.
Prunes have been proven in earlier analysis to advertise helpful intestine microbiota alterations and protect bone well being. These advantages have been usually attributed to their polyphenolic compounds; nonetheless, the exact processes and contributions of different key vitamins, like carbohydrates, stay unknown.
Researchers separated polyphenol (PP) compounds and carbohydrates (CHO) from prunes and fed them to 2 distinct teams of estrogen-deficient feminine mice with important bone loss over 5- and 10-week durations on this research. For comparability, three different teams of mice had been fed diets containing both complete prunes, a prune crude extract comprising each PP and CHO prune parts, or a weight loss program containing neither prunes nor prune parts, which served because the management group. When it comes to macronutrients, all diets had been comparable.
Compared to mice who didn’t take any prune or prune element, people who took remoted CHO, remoted PP, prune crude extract, or whole prunes had beforehand misplaced bone restored. These mice additionally demonstrated a big enhance briefly chain fatty acid (SCFA) production in their guts, as well as beneficial modifications in their gut microbiota. Researchers detected increases in the SCFAs n-butyrate and propionate in particular, which are considered to be especially efficient in preventing bone loss by suppressing biomarkers associated with bone breakdown.
These observations suggest that prunes and prune components may affect the gut in a manner that contributes to improved mineral absorption, immune system processes, and the gut barrier’s integrity – all of which can affect hormones, metabolites, and immune cells that play a role in bone health.
The researchers also reported that the CHO independently showed the ability to restore bone early in the study while the effect of the PP on bone became evident and more important later.
“Even though we think they’re both having prebiotic activity, those prebiotics are probably occurring by different mechanisms,” said Smith. She added that her findings make a strong case for consuming whole prunes “because you’re getting some of the benefit from the carbohydrate in the short term, and the long-term benefit from the polyphenols.”
Smith noted that the vitamins, minerals, and plant compounds in prunes may also contribute to the bone and gut benefits. This research gets us closer to understanding the unique attributes of prunes while underscoring the importance of eating the fruit in its entirety.
This study is one of several recent or current studies that are further exploring the benefits of prunes and their specific components on different health conditions. Additional studies that will be presented or published in the near term will investigate the relationship between prune consumption and inflammation in postmenopausal women, glucocorticoid-induced osteoporosis in mice, and colon cancer suppression in rats. These studies are expected to build upon the existing body of evidence that points to prunes as a bone- and gut- supportive food.
Reference: “Dried Plum’s Polyphenolic Compounds and Carbohydrates Contribute to Its Osteoprotective Effects and Exhibit Prebiotic Activity in Estrogen Deficient C57BL/6 Mice” by Brenda J. Smith, Bethany Hatter, Karley Washburn, Jennifer Graef-Downard, Babajide A. Ojo, Guadalupe Davila El-Rassi, Robert H. Cichewicz, Mark Payton and Edralin A. Lucas, 19 April 2022, Nutrients.