Thursday, 6 April 2017

Currents and Sultanas Fight Colon Cancer

Sultana Raisins are considered one of nature’s healthiest dried fruits and contain Vitamins B1, B2 and various minerals. But they also contain anti-cancer polyphenols that can be very useful

"These results indicate that the methanol extracts from currants, rich in phenolic compounds, exhibit cancer preventive efficacy by limiting cell proliferation, inducing cell death, and suppressing ICAM-1 levels in AGS cells". See study below.

Sultanas are said to be very beneficial to a person’s health, and also potentially a powerful weapon for fighting cancer due to the polyphenol antioxidant activity that appears to provide protection against many forms of cancer, especially colon cancer. 

Therefore I recommend adding raisins/sultanas to your diet, especially if you, like me, have had colon cancer in the past. I have personally recently started eating a breakfast cereal called "Sultana Bran", which is bran flakes with sultanas. This type of product can easily be self made by obtaining the said ingredients, if a similar product is not available to you. Many other products exist containing these health promoting dried fruits, including chocolate raisins.

My recommendation is based on research and the following findings published in PubMed.Gov - as shown below.

Chemopreventive properties of raisins originating from Greece in colon cancer cells


Colorectal cancer is one of the major causes of cancer-related mortality in humans in both developed and developing countries. Dietary patterns influence the risk of colon cancer development, while plant-derived foods have gained great interest, due to the high content of antioxidants. Corinthian raisins (Currants, CR) and Sultanas (S) (Vitis vinifera L., Vitaceae) are dried vine fruits produced in Greece with many culinary uses in both the Mediterranean and the Western nutrition. In the present study, we investigated the effects of CR and S on human colon cancer cells. Methanol extracts of CR and S were used at different concentrations. The total polyphenol content and anti-radical activity were measured by Folin-Ciocalteu and DPPH, respectively. Antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and anti-proliferative effects on HT29 cell culture were evaluated. All extracts exhibited DPPH˙ scavenging activity in a dose-dependent manner. Both products suppressed cell proliferation, while the levels of glutathione and cyclooxygenase 2 were significantly decreased. A significant reduction in IL-8 levels and NF-kappaB p65 activation was also observed. Both antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects were dependent on the duration of exposure. Results indicate that the methanol extracts of CR and S exhibit anti-radical activity in vitro, as well as cancer preventive efficacy on colon cancer cells, with S having slightly higher activity. The beneficial properties of these unique dried grapes are attributed to their high content of phenolic compounds.

Effect of Greek raisins (Vitis vinifera L.) from different origins on gastric cancer cell growth.


Currants and Sultanas (Vitis vinifera L.) are dried vine products produced in Greece and used broadly in the Mediterranean diet. We aimed to investigate the gastric cancer preventive activity of methanol extracts obtained from currants from three different origins in Greece (Vostizza, Nemea, and Messinia) as well as methanol extracts obtained from Sultanas cultivated in the island of Crete as to inhibition of cell proliferation, induction of apoptosis, and inhibition of inflammation. All extracts from 500 microg dried raisins studied suppressed cell proliferation, significantly those obtained from Sultanas from Crete and currants from Nemea. Flow cytometric analysis of Annexin-V labeled cells indicated that Cretan Sultana, Nemea, and Messinia currants at 500 microg dried product/ml medium significantly induced cell death. All extracts from 500 microg dried raisins statistically decreased protein and mRNA levels of ICAM-1 in TNF-alpha stimulated cells. Measurement of IL-8 protein levels and quantification for IL-8 mRNA showed no significant decrease. These results indicate that the methanol extracts from currants, rich in phenolic compounds, exhibit cancer preventive efficacy by limiting cell proliferation, inducing cell death, and suppressing ICAM-1 levels in AGS cells.