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Am J Clin Nutr. 2005 Jan;81(1 Suppl):292S-297S.

Polyphenols and cardiovascular disease: effects on endothelial and platelet function.

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  • 1Evans Department of Medicine and Whitaker Cardiovascular Institute, Boston University School of Medicine, Boston, MA, USA. jvita@bu.edu

Abstract

Epidemiologic studies suggest that higher polyphenol intake from fruits and vegetables is associated with decreased risk for cardiovascular disease. The mechanisms explaining this observation remain unclear. This review summarizes data suggesting that flavonoids improve endothelial function and inhibit platelet aggregation in humans. The vascular endothelium is a critical regulator of vascular homeostasis, and endothelial dysfunction contributes to the pathogenesis and clinical expression of coronary artery disease. Platelet aggregation is a central mechanism in the pathogenesis of acute coronary syndromes, including myocardial infarction and unstable angina. For these reasons, the observed effects of flavonoids on endothelial and platelet function might explain, in part, the observed beneficial effects of flavonoids on cardiovascular disease risk.

PMID:
15640493
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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