1 Tahrcountry Musings: Eat Your Greens – Grandmas Advice is Very Relevant

Sunday, January 31, 2010

Eat Your Greens – Grandmas Advice is Very Relevant

Peanuts are an excellent source of protein. But eating peanuts and peanut butter may expose you to Aflatoxin, a carcinogen. Scientists from Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory have discovered that eating leafy greens is an excellent way to neutralize the potential Aflatoxin.

Lawrence Livermore researchers Graham Bench and Ken Turteltaub found that giving a small dose of chlorophyll (Chla) or chlorophyllin (CHL) found in green leafy vegetables could reverse the effects of aflatoxin poisoning.

Aflatoxin is a naturally occurring carcinogenic mycotoxin that is associated with the growth of two types of mold: Aspergillus flavus and Aspergillus parasiticus. Food and food crops most prone to aflatoxin contamination include corn and corn products, cottonseed, peanuts and peanut products, tree nuts and milk.

The team initially gave each of three volunteers a small dose of carbon 14 labeled aflatoxin (less than the amount that would be found in a peanut butter sandwich.) In subsequent experiments the patients were given a small amount of Chla or CHL concomitantly with the same dose of carbon 14 labeled aflatoxin. The Chla and CHL treatment each significantly reduced aflatoxin absorption and bioavailability.

The research, which is co-funded by the National Institutes of Health’s National Resource for Biomedical Accelerator Mass Spectrometry, appeared in the December issue of the journal, Cancer Prevention Research.

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