Citrus essential oils also act as antioxidants that help combat pathogens and protect against free radical damage. In addition, the soothing aroma of the oils can help boost mood and energize the body, as previously noted. Here Leslie Locklear, Food.news, reflects on the sweet scent of bergamot healing:
“Apparently, there’s more to bergamot (Citrus bergamia) than just its fragrance. This is according to a study carried out by an international team of scientists who found that bergamot fruit extracts have the potential to be used against both cancer and heart disease.
In a study published in the journal Bioenergetics, researchers found that bergamot extracts were able to reduce blood cholesterol as well as kill cancer stem cells during a series of laboratory tests — all without harming healthy cells.
The team said that these findings raise the possibility of using the extracts as a basis for new, non-toxic medication that can combat both cancer and cardiovascular disease.
The research team, which was composed of chemists from the University of Calabria and biologists from the University of Salford, built their research on the findings of an earlier study, which found that citrus extracts exhibited statin-like properties.
Statins are a class of drugs that are prescribed by doctors to help lower blood cholesterol levels in order to help prevent heart attacks and strokes.
But these drugs are known to have severe side effects, including cardiomyopathy and muscle cell damage.
The team noted that the compounds in bergamot – identified as Brutierdin and Melitidin – effectively inhibited cholesterol enzymes at a rate similar to commercially-available statins.
The compounds were also observed as having another ability: they can cause cancer stem cells to stop dividing and die.
According to the research team, the mechanism behind the compounds’ cancer-killing ability is akin to shutting down the cancer cells’ engine room.
“This combination — what we are calling BMF — is targeting mitochondria which are effectively the engine room of cancer cells, cutting off a cancer cell’s ability to generate energy, so it dies,” researcher Marco Fiorillo said, noting that this activity had no collateral damage, which makes their findings all the more exciting.
Aside from their apparent potency and non-toxicity, nutraceuticals — the name given to naturally-occurring compounds set to be used as medication such as bergamot extracts — are of particular interest since they are accessible to almost everyone and are relatively inexpensive, unlike synthetic drugs that often carry hefty price tags.
“The idea of natural products as effective drugs is not a surprising one, given the everyday microbial warfare that is waged in the natural world,” Michael Lisanti, the Professor and Chair of Translational Medicine at the University of Salford, said.”
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Read More … Article Source: https://www.food.news/2021-01-07-bergamot-potent-anticancer-anticholesterol-properties.html
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