Concentrations of anthocyanins in common foods in the United States and estimation of normal consumption

J Agric Food Chem. 2006 May 31;54(11):4069-75. doi: 10.1021/jf060300l.


Anthocyanins (ACNs) are water-soluble plant pigments that have important functions in plant physiology as well as possible health effects. Over 100 common foods were screened for ACNs, and 24 of them were found to contain ACNs. Concentrations of total ACNs varied considerably from 0.7 to 1480 mg/100 g of fresh weight in gooseberry ('Careless' variety) and chokeberry, respectively. Not only does the concentration vary, but the specific anthocyanins present in foods are also quite different. Only six common aglycones, delphinidin, cyanidin, petunidin, pelargonidin, peonidin, and malvidin, were found in all of these foods. However, their sugar moieties and acylation patterns varied from food to food. Results from this study will add to the available data for the USDA Nutrient Database of flavonoids. On the basis of the concentration data and updated food intake data from NHANES 2001-2002, the daily intake of ACNs is estimated to be 12.5 mg/day/person in the United States. Of the different aglycones, cyanidin, delphinidin, and malvidin were estimated to contribute 45, 21, and 15%, respectively, of the total ACN intake. Nonacylated contributed 77% compared to 23% from acylated ACNs.

MeSH terms

  • Anthocyanins / administration & dosage*
  • Anthocyanins / analysis*
  • Chromatography, High Pressure Liquid
  • Diet*
  • Food Analysis*
  • Fruit / chemistry
  • Humans
  • Mass Spectrometry
  • Nutrition Surveys
  • United States


  • Anthocyanins
  • malvidin
  • cyanidin
  • delphinidin