Drinking blood orange juice helps, in a month, to reduce chronic inflammation and protect the heart, even in those who are overweight. This emerges from very recent scientific research published in the journal Frontiers in Microbiology by a Brazilian team (Correa et al, Front Microbiol, 2023).e
Blood orange juice, benefits for the heart and against inflammation
The study is very small, in fact it involved only 12 people, all overweight women between 18 and 37 years old.
Therefore, to offer greater solidity to the results, it will be useful in the coming months to extend it to a larger sample of the population, also considering men and different age groups. In any case, the results that have emerged so far are of considerable importance. In fact, after a month in which the volunteers were asked to drink 500 ml of blood orange juice, Moro variety, per day, it was possible to observe interesting benefits. First, blood orange juice influenced the gut microbiota, which, as a result, produced a greater amount of short-chain fatty acids, which are anti-inflammatory substances.
Then, drinking blood orange juice decreased fasting blood sugar and improved insulin sensitivity, thus reducing insulin levels. Not only that, already after two weeks of taking the juice there was a decrease in blood pressure, both systolic, albeit with many fluctuations, but above all diastolic, on average by 4 mmHg. It should be noted that a reduction in diastolic pressure, which is the minimum pressure, of 5 mmHg can lead to a 40% reduction in the risk of stroke and a reduction of up to 25% in the risk of developing coronary heart disease.
Blood orange juice, conclusions, warnings and interactions with drugs
Drinking blood orange juice allows you to fill up on antioxidants, especially flavonoids and anthocyanins, to which the protective properties for the microbiota and the heart described in the study are attributed. As mentioned, the research is just beginning and more work will need to be done but, while waiting for science to take its course, it can certainly be a good choice to include blood oranges, juice or whole fruit, in your daily diet. As far as drug interactions go, blood oranges, like oranges in general, are considered safe. One of the few interactions observed is with a drug used against osteoporosis, alendronate, since orange juice reduced its absorption by almost 60%. A similar action is observed with an antihistamine, fexofenadine, whose absorption is reduced when taken with a glass of orange juice. Hence the invitation to always contact your doctor for advice if you are taking drugs and in any case avoid taking drugs and orange at the same time. Also be careful with orange juices fortified with calcium. In this case, an interaction with antibiotics is possible, the effectiveness of which is reduced and the risk of antibiotic resistance is consequently increased. But this applies to all juices fortified with calcium (Petric et al, Foods, 2021).