Profiling of phenols in human fecal water after raspberry supplementation

J Agric Food Chem. 2010 Oct 13;58(19):10389-95. doi: 10.1021/jf1017143.


The phenolic compositions of fecal water samples from ten free-living human subjects without marked dietary restrictions were monitored before and after intake of raspberry puree (200 g/day, 4 days) using gas chromatography-mass spectrometry. No single phenolic component was increased in all subjects after intake, but a majority of subjects had significant elevations in phenylacetic acid (7/10), 4-hydroxyphenylacetic acid (6/10), 3-hydroxyphenylacetic acid (5/10), 3-phenylpropionic acid and 3-(4-hydroxyphenyl)propionic acid. The levels of 3,4-dihydroxbenzoic acid were elevated in 8/10 subjects, significantly for 6 subjects (p < 0.05), and not significantly reduced in the other 2 subjects. In addition, unlike most other fecal metabolites, the increase was always >2-fold. This metabolite may be representative of the increased colonic dose of cyanidin anthocyanins. The colonic microbiota varied greatly between individuals, and supplementation with raspberries did not produce any statistically significant alterations in the profile of colonic bacteria, nor was a common pattern revealed to account for the interindividual variations observed in the fecal water phenolic profiles.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Body Water / chemistry*
  • Diet*
  • Feces / chemistry*
  • Feces / microbiology
  • Flavonoids / analysis
  • Fruit / chemistry*
  • Gas Chromatography-Mass Spectrometry
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Phenols / analysis*
  • Phenylacetates / analysis
  • Polyphenols
  • Rosaceae / chemistry*


  • Flavonoids
  • Phenols
  • Phenylacetates
  • Polyphenols
  • phenylacetic acid