The Queensland-bred Queen Garnet plum’s health claims continue to be bolstered, with new research indicating that frequent consumption of plums can lower blood pressure. Researchers discovered that consuming Queen Garnet plum nectar on a daily basis lowers metabolic syndrome risk factors. Heart disease, stroke, and type-2 diabetes are all linked to metabolic syndrome. Queen Garnet nectar was found to lower blood pressure, fasting glucose, insulin, and LDL (bad) cholesterol levels in overweight and obese people who ingested it for three months, according to a Victoria University clinical trial published in the Journal of Functional Foods in March.
The nectar is one among a number of value-added products made from the Queen Garnet, which also includes powders and chewables. However, only the months of February and March are available for the specialised fresh line. The human trial was inspired by similar findings from a USQ study, led by Professor Brown, on obese and hypertensive rats which found the nectar reversed inflammation of the heart and liver, as well as blood pressure and fat levels. The researchers attributed the effects to the known benefits of the Queen Garnet’s anthocyanins – powerful antioxidants found in red, blue and purple fruits and vegetables.
Queen Garnet plums provide up to seven times the amount of antioxidants as ordinary plums. Professor Mathai added, “Our study demonstrated that drinking Queen Garnet nectar has crucial and interesting implications for an increasingly sedentary society.” Blood pressure, LDL cholesterol, and glucose levels are all lower, which is good for cardiovascular and metabolic health. “We somewhat reduced the patients’ odds of becoming diabetes in this study, which is impressive given that we were giving them a fruit drink with natural sugars. The results showed a gradual and sustained reduction in blood pressure within six weeks of consuming the nectar and it continued to lower over the trial period by about 10mmHg, which is highly significant for cardiovascular health.
The nectar’s effect on blood pressure was comparable to that of antihypertensive medicines, according to the Victoria University study. As more Australians are trying to find natural foods to enhance their health and wellbeing, taking the nectar is a conversation people at risk of cardiovascular and metabolic diseases could have with their healthcare practitioners.
Article by: Hari Yellina (Orchard Tech)