Eggplant is a species of S. melongena, belonging to the family Solanaceae and native to India. The plant has been cultivated in southern and eastern Asia since prehistory. It is famous with its deeply purple and the best eggplant can be found from August through October when it is in season.
6. Thiamine (Vitamin B1)
7. Riboflavin (Vitamin B2)
8. Niacin (Vitamin B3)
9. Pantothenic acid (B5)
10. Vitamin B6
11. Folate (Vitamin B9)
12. Vitamin C
The vegetable chemical compounds containing include sterols (i.e. typical plant sterols, androstane, pregnane and cholestane derivatives, steroidal alkaloids and sapogenins), phytosterols, triterpenes, δ-amyrin, Chlorogenic acid, Nasunin and other Polyphenolic compounds.
1. Eggplant and cancer
Cancer is a class of diseases in which a group of cells growing and multiplying disordered and uncontrollable way in our body, have become progressively worse and damaged other healthy tissues, sometimes spreads to other organs in the body via lymph or blood and results may be in death.
The study of antiproliferative activities against human colon (HT29) and liver (HepG2) cancer cells conducted by Yeungnam University, the eggplant glycoalkaloids solamargine showed to inhibit both cancer cell lines but greater in colon cancer cell line(1). In human fibrosarcoma HT-1080 cell, delphinidin, a flavonoid pigment contained in the peel of eggplant, slightly inhibited tumor cell invasiveness probably through slight inhibition of the activity of MMPs(secretes matrix metalloproteinase)(2). According to Dr. Shimada A. in an one year (continuous 2 days for 12 months) food surveys held at 5 areas in Japan, the frequency of intake eggplant may associate to increase risk of gastric cancer and gastric cancer mortality rate(3), but may account partly for the geographic variation in gastric cancer mortality in Japan(4).
(1) Glycoalkaloids and metabolites inhibit the growth of human colon (HT29) and liver (HepG2) cancer cells by Lee KR1, Kozukue N, Han JS, Park JH, Chang EY, Baek EJ, Chang JS, Friedman M.(PubMed)
(2) Inhibitory effect of delphinidin from Solanum melongena on human fibrosarcoma HT-1080 invasiveness in vitro by Nagase H1, Sasaki K, Kito H, Haga A, Sato T.(PubMed)
(3) [Regional differences in gastric cancer mortality and eating habits of people].[Article in Japanese] by Shimada A.(PubMed)
(4) Food consumption and gastric cancer mortality in five regions of Japan by Tsubono Y1, Kobayashi M, Tsugane S.(PubMed)
2. Eggplant and cholesterol
Cholesterol is needed for our body to build cell walls, make hormones and vitamin D, and create bile salts that help you digest fat. However too much of it can be dangerous because cholesterol cannot dissolve in your blood. The special particle called lipoprotein moves this waxy, soft substance from place to place. If you have too much low density lipoprotein LDL that is known as bad cholesterol, overtime cholesterol can build up in your arterial walls causing blockage and leading to heart attack and stroke.
Eggplant (Solanum melongena) has been used as hypocholesterolemic agent in many countries, including Brazil. its phenolic may has the potential to reduce hyperglycemia-induced pathogenesis linked to cellular oxidation stress(1). In a study of 38 hypercholesterolemic human volunteers ingesting S. melongena infusion for five weeks, researchers found no differences when compared to control, but in Intraindividual analysis S. melongena infusion significantly reduced the blood levels of total and LDL cholesterol and of apolipoprotein B(1).
But in a double-blind placebo-controlled study of the effectiveness of oral Solanum melongena (SM) against hyperlipidemia, showed the potential result in decreased serum total cholesterol, LDL-c and LDL-c/HDL-c, but no change in serum triglycerides, HDL-c, VLDL-c, AST, ALT, gGT, glucose and body mass index, after 3 months(2) and according to Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais, eggplant did not alter the total cholesterol and atherogenic lipoproteins after 12 week of intake in its study (3).
(1) In vitro studies of eggplant (Solanum melongena) phenolics as inhibitors of key enzymes relevant for type 2 diabetes and hypertension by Kwon YI1, Apostolidis E, Shetty K.(PubMed)(2) Eggplant (Solanum melongena) infusion has a modest and transitory effect on hypercholesterolemic subjects by Guimarães PR1, Galvão AM, Batista CM, Azevedo GS, Oliveira RD, Lamounier RP, Freire N, Barros AM, Sakurai E, Oliveira JP, Vieira EC, Alvarez-Leite JI.(PubMed)(3) [Absence of hypolipidemic effect of Solanum melongena L. (eggplant) on hyperlipidemic patients].[Article in Portuguese] by Silva GE1, Takahashi MH, Eik Filho W, Albino CC, Tasim GE, Serri Lde A, Assef AH, Cortez DA, Bazotte RB.(PubMed)
(4) Effects of eggplant (Solanum melongena) on the atherogenesis and oxidative stress in LDL receptor knock out mice (LDLR(-/-)) by Botelho FV1, Enéas LR, Cesar GC, Bizzotto CS, Tavares E, Oliveira FA, Gloria MB, Silvestre MP, Arantes RM, Alvarez-Leite JI.(PubMed)
3. Eggplant as antioxidant
Free radicals are atoms, molecules, or ions with unpaired electrons through chemical bonds with other atoms or molecules during a chemical reaction. They may have positive, negative or zero charge. The unpaired electrons cause radicals to be highly chemically reactive in the human body, leading to aging and cancers.
Eggplant fruit contains a rich source of polyphenol compounds endowed with antioxidant properties. According to Università degli Studi di Catania, dry peeled skin combined with 50% aqueous ethanol, irradiated with microwave contained showed a high quantity of flavonoids with good antioxidant activity expressed through its capacity to scavenge superoxide anion and to inhibit lipid peroxidation(1). Solanum anguivi fruit (SAG) exhibited potent and concentration dependent free radical-scavenging activity as well as protected against Ca(2+) (110 μmol/L)-induced mitochondrial swelling and maintained the mitochondrial membrane potential, in the evaluation of the antioxidant and radical scavenging activities of Solanum anguivi fruit (SAG) and its possible effect on mitochondrial permeability transition pore(2).
The City University of New York, in the study of the antioxidant-caffeoylquinic acid isomers in fruits of wild eggplant relatives, 3-O-malonyl-5-O-(E)-caffeoylquinic acid (isomer 1) and 4-O-(E)-caffeoyl-5-O-malonylquinic acid (isomer 2) exhibited free radical scavenging activity, albeit about 4-fold lower than that of the flavonol quercetin dehydrate(3).
(1) Antioxidant activity and phenolic content of microwave-assisted Solanum melongena extracts by Salerno L, Modica MN, Pittalà V, Romeo G, Siracusa MA, Di Giacomo C, Sorrenti V, Acquaviva R.(PubMed)
(2) African eggplant (Solanum anguivi Lam.) fruit with bioactive polyphenolic compounds exerts in vitro antioxidant properties and inhibits Ca(2+)-induced mitochondrial swelling by Elekofehinti OO1, Kamdem JP, Bolingon AA, Athayde ML, Lopes SR, Waczuk EP, Kade IJ, Adanlawo IG, Rocha JB.(PubMed)
(3) Two new antioxidant malonated caffeoylquinic acid isomers in fruits of wild eggplant relatives by Ma C1, Dastmalchi K, Whitaker BD, Kennelly EJ.(PubMed)
4. Eggplant and cardiovascular diseases
Beside cancer, heart disease kills more than 2,000 Americans everyday. Approximately 60 million Americans have heart disease. Most of heart diseases are caused by high blood pressure contributes to hardening of the arteries. High levels of bad cholesterol (LDL) build up in the arteries as a result of uncontrolled diet with high levels of saturated fat and trans fat.
Animals fed freeze-dried products of either raw or grilled eggplants for 30 days study showed a positive effect of raw and cooked eggplant (Solanum melongena L) in increase left ventricular function, and reduce myocardial infarct size and cardiomyocyte apoptosis with high potency in grilled eggplants(1). According to Tuskegee University, eggplant containing high sources of phenolic compounds, which might provide anti-oxidative protection against free radicals in the human body and might reduce the risk of chronic diseases(2)
(1) Cardioprotective properties of raw and cooked eggplant (Solanum melongena L) by Das S1, Raychaudhuri U, Falchi M, Bertelli A, Braga PC, Das DK.(PubMed)
(2) Total phenolics and antioxidant capacity of indigenous vegetables in the southeast United States: Alabama Collaboration for Cardiovascular Equality Project by Huang Z1, Wang B, Eaves DH, Shikany JM, Pace RD.(PubMed)
5. Eggplant and Type II diabetes
Diabetes is defined as a condition caused by insufficient insulin entering the bloodstream to regulate the glucose. It is either caused by cells in pancreas dying off or receptor sites clogged up by fat and cholesterol. In some cases, diabetes is also caused by allergic reactions of cells in the immune system.
According to University of Massachusetts, phenolic-enriched extracts of eggplant with moderate free radical scavenging-linked antioxidant activity had high alpha-glucosidase inhibitory activity, through inhibition of key enzymes relevant for type 2 diabetes and hypertension(1). Chlorogenic acids (CGAs (71 compounds), being esters of derivatives of cinnamic acids with quinic acid found in many foods, including eggplant may be associated to reduce risk of the risk of human chronic diseases such as inflammation, diabetes(2).
(1) In vitro studies of eggplant (Solanum melongena) phenolics as inhibitors of key enzymes relevant for type 2 diabetes and hypertension by Kwon YI1, Apostolidis E, Shetty K.(PubMed)
(2) n outlook on chlorogenic acids-occurrence, chemistry, technology, and biological activities by Upadhyay R1, Mohan Rao LJ.(PubMed)
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