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J Agric Food Chem. 2014 May 14;62(19):4359-68. doi: 10.1021/jf5007566. Epub 2014 May 5.

Effects of soluble and insoluble fractions from bilberries, black currants, and raspberries on short-chain fatty acid formation, anthocyanin excretion, and cholesterol in rats.

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Applied Nutrition and Food Chemistry, Department of Food Technology, Engineering and Nutrition, Kemicentrum, Lund University , P.O. Box 124, SE-221 00 Lund, Sweden.


Dietary fiber and flavonoids, important components in berries, are suggested to improve metabolic health. This study investigates whether soluble and insoluble fractions isolated from bilberry, black currant, and raspberry affect the formation of short-chain fatty acids (SCFAs), uptake and excretion of flavonoids, and levels of cholesterol differently. Cecal SCFA pools were higher in rats fed the soluble than the insoluble fractions (525 vs 166 μmol, P < 0.001), whereas higher concentrations of butyric acid were found in the distal colon and serum of rats fed the insoluble fractions (5 vs 3 μmol/g and 58 vs 29 μmol/L, respectively, P < 0.001). The soluble bilberry fraction gave lower amounts of liver cholesterol (56 mg) than the other berry fractions (87 ± 5 mg), formed the highest amount of SCFAs (746 vs 266 ± 21 μmol), and contributed the highest intake of anthocyanins. Cyanidin-3-glucoside monoglucuronide was detected in the urine of all groups, whereas anthocyanins were found only in groups fed soluble black currant and raspberry.

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