ANTIOXIDANT PHYTOCHEMICALS IN CULTIVATED AND WILD CANADIAN STRAWBERRIES
Abstract Strawberries are one of the best natural sources of antioxidants, chemical substances that are much needed in our bodys fight with damaging free radicals. Vitamin C and E are essential antioxidants, however, non-essential phytochemical antioxidants such as phenolic compounds in strawberries have been increasingly found to be even stronger antioxidants. They have also been found to work synergistically with the vitamins in the elimination of free radicals. Many different phenolic compounds are found in strawberries. Anthocyanidins, procyanidins, phenolic acids and flavonoids are among the most important of these chemicals. However, the concentration and composition of these phytochemicals vary depending on the variety, location of cultivation and growing seasons. Several dozens of different cultivated and wild strawberry plants were examined over three years, and we found that the average total phenolic content of wild strawberries were much higher than those of the cultivated strawberries. By using three different in vitro antioxidant assays, extracts of strawberries were found to be better antioxidants than the commercial antioxidant, BHT, used in food at the recommended concentration. The antioxidant activity of the strawberry is attributed to the phenolic compounds, which were also found to possess high antioxidant activity. Understanding the basic chemistry of the strawberry is the first step in the course of developing antioxidant nutraceuticals from strawberries. Phytochemical studies are important because they provide critical information on the individual antioxidant chemicals, which is needed for mode of action studies and for breeding high antioxidant strawberries for fresh consumption.
Tsao, R., Yang, R., Socknovie, E., Zhou, T. and Dale, A. (2003). ANTIOXIDANT PHYTOCHEMICALS IN CULTIVATED AND WILD CANADIAN STRAWBERRIES. Acta Hortic. 626, 25-35
Phenolics, flavonoids, anthocyanins, procyanidins, phytochemicals, antioxidants, strawberries