The Beauty and Health Benefits of Flavonoids

Photo credit: Bigstockphoto
Photo credit: Bigstockphoto

Flavonoids or bioflavonoids are a class of phytonutrients found in nutrient-dense fruits and vegetables. These are substances that give plant pigments. Foods rich in flavonoids tend to feature deep yellow or orange coloring. Some plants contain flavonoids in the roots. Certain beverages like teas, wines, and fruit drinks also contain flavonoids.

Currently, there are over 4,000 different types of flavonoids. 100 of these are beneficial to human health. Flavonoids are categorized into the following groups: flavonols, flavones, flavanones, isoflavones, catechins, anthocyanidins, neoflavonoids, and proanthocyanidins. Most health experts agree that a healthy, well-balanced diet should include foods rich in flavonoids. Berries, coniferous vegetables, dark chocolates, and all kinds of teas contain health-giving flavonoids.

Beauty and Health Benefits of Flavonoids

Prevents Inflammation

When applied topically, flavonoid-rich ointment and creams soothe inflamed skin, prevent breakouts, and protect the skin from oxidative damage. That’s because flavonoids contain potent anti-inflammatory, astringent, and anti-microbial properties.

Cuts Cancer Risk

Multiple clinical researches show that catechins in teas help cut the risk of cancer. They act as antioxidants, protecting organs from oxidative stress. Most health experts believe that oxidative stress contributes to cell mutation which then leads to the development of benign and cancerous growths.

While flavonoids do not directly attack cancer cells, they induce certain biological mechanisms that eliminate cancer cells. They also help prevent tumor growth and stop cancer cells from spreading to other parts of the body.

Heart Friendly

Bioflavonoids keep the heart healthy by enhancing the body’s existing nitric oxide synthase. This keeps the blood vessels healthy, minimizes inflammation, and lowers the blood pressure. All these will help prevent cardiovascular diseases.

Prevents Early Sign of Aging

If you’re eating healthy to keep the skin younger-looking, then add more flavonoid-rich foods to your diet. Tea, red wine, and dark chocolate help prevent UV-accelerated skin aging. A clinical test shows that redness on burned skin is reduced by feeding participants with foods rich in flavonoids.

12 weeks after the study, women with more flavonoids in their diet exhibited 25% less redness from a second exposure to sun lamps. Experts believe that flavonoids prevented skin damage by boosting blood flow under the skin. The result? Younger-looking skin that’s more resistant to the sun’s damaging rays!

Boosts Nutrient Absorption

Did you know flavonoids also help the body absorb more nutrients? There are times when the body won’t be able to absorb nutrients, including vitamin C. Flavonoids assist in the efficient absorption of vitamins and minerals. The result is a strong immune system.

Might Prevent Parkinson’s Disease

A new study suggests that phytonutrients may hold the key to treating Parkinson’s disease. Some types of flavonoids protect neurons from damage, thus preventing the development of Parkinson’s. Adopting a healthy diet full of fresh fruits like berries and apples may cut the risk of the disease in men but not in women. This shows that men and women have different ways of processing certain nutrients. More research is needed to determine the link between phytonutrients and prevention of certain degenerative disorders.