| research/study

Strawberries: What to Eat to Fight Inflammatory Bowel Disease

Research Associates Strawberry Consumption With Reduced Inflammation

A simple dietary modification could make a significant difference in moderating colonic inflammation and reducing the risk for inflammatory bowel disease. Researchers from the Department of Food Science at University of Massachusetts, Amherst, report that daily consumption of about ¾ of a cup of strawberries may promote better gut health and forestall the onset of Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis, and other forms of IBD. Lead author Hang Xiao, PhD, commented, “The sedentary lifestyle and dietary habits of many people in this country—high-sugar, high-animal-fat, but low-fiber diets—may promote colonic inflammation and increase the risk of IBD.” The findings from the new research were scheduled for presentation yesterday at the National Meeting and Exposition of the American Chemical Society.

Increased intake of fruits and vegetables has been shown to be associated with reduced risk for development of IBD. The U. Mass researchers chose to study the effect of strawberry consumption due to their widespread availability. The study observed 4 groups of mice, 3 with IBD who were given a regular diet, a diet with 2.5% whole strawberry powder, and a diet with 5% whole strawberry powder. The 4th group were healthy mice who were fed a regular diet. IBD-affected mice who consumed the equivalent of a ¾ cup of strawberries showed diminished inflammatory responses in their colonic tissue, and a reversal of unhealthy microbiota composition associated with IBD. The team plan further work to validate their findings in human patients with IBD.

Read about the study findings, including the presentation abstract.

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