Nutmeg may protect against liver damage: Antioxidants in the fragrant spice prevent inflammation of the organ, study finds
- Nutmeg may also keep livers healthy by regulating the organs’ fat levels
- Chinese medicine frequently uses the spice to relieve gastrointestinal illnesses
- Traditional herbal remedies also use nutmeg for arthritis or toothache pain
- Nutmeg is thought to protect liver health by acting on a gene called PPAR
- When this gene is ‘turned off’, nutmeg loses its liver health-giving properties
Nutmeg may protect against liver damage, new research suggests.
When tested on mice, the fragrant spice reduces inflammation in the organ, a study found.
Nutmeg may also keep livers healthy by regulating their fat levels, the research adds.
According to the researchers, nutmeg’s beneficial effects may come from its high number of antioxidants, which are known as lignans.
They wrote: ‘Nutmeg is a traditional Chinese medicine used to treat gastrointestinal diseases.
‘This data demonstrates nutmeg alleviates liver injury’.
Chinese medicine frequently uses nutmeg to relieve the pain of arthritis and infections, such as toothache.
Nutmeg may protect against liver damage, new research suggests (stock)
DOES TURMERIC PREVENT OSTEOPOROSIS?
Turmeric may prevent osteoporosis, research revealed in May last year.
The popular Indian spice helps to build and repair bone mass in the elderly, a study by Genoa University found.
Taking a turmeric supplement improves bone density by up to seven per cent over six months, the research adds.
A compound in turmeric, known as curcumin, is thought to balance out cells that remove ageing parts of bone before it is replaced, according to previous findings.
Almost three quarters of elderly people suffer declining bone density, which can cause osteoporosis and is responsible for around 65,000 potentially fatal fractures each year in the UK.
Low bone mass density affects nearly 44 million people in the US.
The researchers analysed otherwise healthy men and women with an average age of 70 who were all suffering declining bone density.
Bones in their heels, jaws and fingers were measured at the start of the study using ultrasound scanning.
Turmeric was combined with soy lecithin to prevent it from being destroyed by the stomach; allowing it to reach the small intestine where it is absorbed.
‘Nutmeg alleviates liver injury’
The researchers, from Nanchang University, used the compound thioacetamide to induce short-term liver damage in rodents.
Results further suggest nutmeg protects such mice from liver damage by working on a gene known as PPAR.
When this gene is ‘turned off’, the spice loses its ability to preserve liver health.
The researchers wrote: ‘This data demonstrates that nutmeg alleviates thiocetamide liver injury through the modulation of PPAR and that the lignan compounds in nutmeg partly contributed to this action.’
The findings were published in the Journal of Proteome Research.
Seat belts reduce the risk of liver damage in car crashes by over 20%
Wearing a seat belt reduces people’s risk of life-threatening liver damage by more than 20 percent, research suggested earlier this month.
Among people involved in car crashes, seat-belt wearers are 21 percent less likely to suffer severe liver injuries, which rises to 26 percent when combined with an airbag, a study found.
The liver is one of the most commonly injured organs during motor-vehicle collisions, with severe damage killing around 15 percent of sufferers, the research adds.
Lead author Audrey Renson, from the NYU Langone Hospital-Brooklyn, said: ‘It has been known for some time that seat-belt use is associated with lower mortality in a car crash.
‘Although some may consider this common sense, there is still some controversy lingering around seat belts possibly being harmful and that having an airbag means you don’t have to wear a seat belt.’
The researchers believe their findings reinforce the importance of seat belts.
Motor-vehicle crashes cause around two million emergency-room visits and tens of thousands of deaths every year in the US.
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