Objectives: Our objective was to determine if long-term daily administration of phytonutrient supplements can prevent the immediate adverse impact of a high-fat meal and increase the production of nitric oxide.
Background: Ingestion of a high-fat meal impairs flow-mediated vasodilation of the brachial artery for at least 4 h; however, co-ingestion of vitamin antioxidants or a green salad has been shown to prevent this effect.
Methods: Flow-mediated brachial artery reactivity test (BART) both before and 3 h after a 900 calorie 50 g fat meal was evaluated in 38 healthy volunteers (age 36.4 +/- 10.1 years). Subjects were randomized to four weeks of daily supplementation with a powdered fruit vegetable juice concentrate (Juice Plus [JP]) along with a complex supplement providing nutritional antioxidants and various herbal extracts (Vineyard [V]), JP alone, or a matching placebo. At three and four weeks, BART was repeated both before and after the high-fat meal. Serum nitrate/nitrite concentrations were measured at baseline and at four weeks.
Results: Four weeks of the JP-V combination blunted the detrimental effect of the high-fat meal (-47.5 +/- 23.4% at baseline vs. -1.7 +/- 9.7% at four weeks [p < 0.05]). Four weeks of JP alone had a similar beneficial effect (-45.1 +/- 19.7% at baseline vs. -16.6 +/- 10.3% at four weeks [p < 0.05]), whereas there was no substantial effect of the placebo. In the subjects treated with supplements, concentrations of serum nitrate/nitrite increased from 78 +/- 39 to 114 +/- 62 microm/l (p < 0.02).
Conclusions: Daily ingestion of modest amounts of a fruit/vegetable juice concentrate with or without adjunctive phytonutrient supplementation can reduce the immediate adverse impact of high-fat meals on flow-mediated vasoactivity and increase nitrate/nitrite blood concentration.