Hearty fruit: Fresh tomato concentrate could prevent early onset of atherosclerotic CVD in older adults – Chinese RCT

By Nurul Ain Razali

- Last updated on GMT

Tomatoes show promising results as agents for atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease (CVD) prevention. ©Getty Images
Tomatoes show promising results as agents for atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease (CVD) prevention. ©Getty Images

Related tags Tomato Antioxidant Supplements elderly

Water-soluble tomato concentrate made from fresh tomatoes could potentially play a role in the early prevention of atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease among middle-aged and elderly adults, according to the recent findings of a Chinese RCT.

The study found that the concentrate could increase serum total antioxidant levels, decrease malondialdehyde levels and reduce platelet aggregation and activation. The two phenomenon influence risk factors for the disease – increased oxidative stress and platelet apoptosis.

Titled “Water-Soluble Tomato Concentrate, a Potential Antioxidant Supplement, Can Attenuate Platelet Apoptosis and Oxidative Stress in Healthy Middle-Aged and Elderly Adults: A Randomized, Double-Blinded, Crossover Clinical Trial”​, the study was published in the journal Nutrients.

“In different pathophysiological conditions (such as ageing or dyslipidemia), the level of oxidative stress increases, thus further inducing the excessive apoptosis of platelets. Oxidative stress and excessive apoptosis of platelets can exacerbate the risk of atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease. Therefore, it is of great significance to control the oxidative stress and platelet apoptosis in middle-aged and elderly adults,”​ said the researchers.

To test their hypothesis, the team formulated an RCT to examine the efficacies of water-soluble tomato concentrate on platelet apoptosis and oxidative stress in 52 healthy middle-aged and elderly adults spanning 10 weeks. The intervention period was four weeks at 150 mg daily.

The subjects, aged between 44 to 68, were recruited from the health examination centre of the First Affiliated Hospital of Sun Yat-sen University and three other community health centres in Guangzhou, China, from March to July 2019. A total of 30% of the subjects were males.

Hearty fruit

Findings of the RCT showed that intervention with the tomato concentrate increased the antioxidative capacity in serum and attenuated apoptosis in the subjects. In addition, the supplementation inhibited platelet activation and aggregation, consistent with previous studies, such as O’Kennedy et al.​ (2017) and O’Kennedy et al.​ (2006).

The supplementation also significantly attenuated platelet dissipation in the current study, suggesting that the concentrate is crucial in reducing early damage to platelet function.

Next, the supplementation effectively increased the total antioxidant capacity while decreasing malonaldehyde levels and platelet generation. This is consistent with other studies that showed the main bioactive components of the concentrate possessed antioxidant properties.

“A risk of bleeding after long-term use still needs to be confirmed by further studies with larger sample sizes and longer intervention durations. The current results suggest that water-soluble tomato concentrate may be used as a potentially safe and reliable nutrient supplement for regulating platelet function.

“Our results suggest that it is a promising agent for atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease prevention that exerts its beneficial effects via the control of oxidative stress and platelet apoptosis,”​ concluded the researchers.

The research was funded by the National Natural Science Foundation of China, the Shenzhen Science and Technology Innovation Commission and the By-health Research Foundation.

Source:​ Nutrients

“Water-Soluble Tomato Concentrate, a Potential Antioxidant Supplement, Can Attenuate Platelet Apoptosis and Oxidative Stress in Healthy Middle-Aged and Elderly Adults: A Randomized, Double-Blinded, Crossover Clinical Trial”

DOI: 10.3390/nu14163374

Authors: ​Tian Zezhong et al.

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