New research in the U.S. has suggested a link between the compounds found in certain fruits and the ability to fight illness. Compounds in blueberries and red grapes were found to work with vitamin D to boost the immune system.
Researchers from Oregon State University looked at the impact of 446 different chemicals on the human immune system. Findings published in the journal of Molecular Nutrition and Food Research showed that two compounds, ‘resveratrol’ found in red grapes and ‘pterostilbene’ found in blueberries, when combined with vitamin D, could boost the body’s ability to fend off illness.
Resveratrol has been the subject of dozens of studies for a range of possible benefits, from improving cardiovascular health to fighting cancer and reducing inflammation.
These compounds, which are called stilbenoids, worked in synergy with vitamin D and had a significant impact in raising the expression of the human cathelicidin antimicrobial peptide (CAMP gene), that is involved in immune function, the researchers explained.
In addition, scientists state that the study was done using laboratory cell cultures and more research needs to be done before they offer dietary recommendations; In prior research this year, blueberries were also found to boost brain power in that they contain high levels of compounds called polyphenolics.