Polyphenols are the chemicals that give vegetables and fruits their colors. They also represent the plant’s primary defense mechanism against invading bacteria and other parasites. Their intake is important in controlling the bacteria composition of our digestive system.
It is becoming recognized that polyphenols are essential nutrients for humans. They are powerful anti-oxidants, have anti-inflammatory effects, and activate the key enzyme (AMP kinase) that controls our metabolism, increases chemical energy production, and slows down the aging process. Equally important, you need adequate levels of polyphenols to maintain the appropriate balance of bacteria in your gut that is key to maintaining long-term health. If that balance is disturbed by a lack of polyphenols in your diet, the result will be increased cellular inflammation throughout your body.
From an anti-oxidant potential you need to ingest enough fruits and vegetables to provide a minimum of 3,000-5,000 Oxygen Radical Absorption Capacity (ORAC) units per day. Unfortunately, to reach the minimum 3,000-5,000 ORAC units requires approximately 10 servings of normally consumed fruits and vegetables per day. Dr. Sears recommends at least 10,000 ORAC units per day for optimal anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory benefits. To reach the recommended levels of 10,000 ORAC units per day, it does require additional polyphenol supplementation for most people. The good news it that one capsule of any of our polyphenol products will provide an additional 8,000 ORAC units.
No. There are about 4,000 known polyphenols. All have some anti-oxidative properties, but relatively few are anti-inflammatory, and even fewer have anti-aging benefits. Furthermore, you need highly purified polyphenol extracts like those used in Zone Polyphenols to get the full potential of their anti-inflammatory and anti-aging properties.
To get the full potential of the anti-inflammatory and anti-aging properties of polyphenols, you have to use highly purified extracts. They are more expensive than typical concentrates because of the extra processing, but without such purification you are unlikely see any of their potential benefits.
Delphinidins are the only polyphenols that are common to red wine, dark chocolate, and blueberries. Delphinidins have a unique structure compared to all other polyphenols that allows them to provide unique anti-inflammatory and anti-aging benefits. The richest source of delphinidins is the maqui berry found only in the Patagonian region of Chile. One capsule of Maqui Rx contains the highly purified polyphenol extract of the maqui berry and has the same amount of delphinidins as found in 100 bottles of red wine, 20 bars of dark chocolate, or 5 pounds of blueberries.