Health Food Onion Processes Anti-Atherogenic Property

By Kyle J. Norton

Atherosclerosis is a condition characterized by the accumulated plaque on the arterial wall. Over time the condition can cause stiffening and hardening of the arteries, leading to cardiovascular disease.

Anti-atherogenic activity is the process to prevent or inhibit atherogenesis associated with the reduced formation of fatty plaques in the arteries.

 In other words, anything, including the use of substances such as herbal remedy that prevents the blockage or narrowing of the arteries is considered atheroprotective effects.

Plaque in the arteries is formed by substances including fat, cholesterol, calcium, and other substances found in the blood in the bloodstream. However,  most cases of atherosclerosis are also involved in the amount of cholesterol which normally returned to the liver in healthy individuals remaining in the blood due to low levels of good cholesterol (HDL) or overexpression of bad cholesterol (LDL).

In other words, an unhealthy ratio of low and high-density lipoprotein is also one of the major risk factors of atherosclerosis.

The healthy ratio of blood cholesterol is any number that is less than 4 (LDL)/ 1 (HDL).

Some researchers suggested by increasing the levels of good cholesterol in the blood, the risk of atherosclerosis can be reduced.

Dr. Feig JE and colleagues wrote, “Pharmacologic agents, such as fibrates and niacin that increase HDL cholesterol levels have been associated with decreased cardiovascular events and beneficial effects on the coronary and carotid arteries”.

And, “…potential mechanisms by which HDL may exert these anti-atherogenic effects, namely through its role in reverse cholesterol transport, its effects on endothelial cells, and its anti-inflammatory/antioxidant activities”.

The results strongly suggested a healthy diet including nuts, coffee, cocoa, grapes, and berries with high levels of HLD may have a profound effect on the prevention of atherosclerosis.

The onion is a plant in the genus Allium, belonging to the family Alliaceae, a close relation of garlic. It is often called the “king of vegetables” because of its pungent taste and found in a large number of recipes and preparations spanning almost the totality of the world’s cultures. 
Depending on the variety, an onion can be sharp, spicy, tangy, pungent, mild or sweet.

On finding a potent ingredient which processes cardioprotection researchers examined the quercetin and polyuronide contents of rapidly dried onion (Allium cepa L. cv. Momiji No. 3) powder (OP) prepared from the outer layers (from second to the fourth scale leaves from the surface) of onion bulbs anti-atherogenic effect.

The study included rats fed a high-fat diet treated by quercetin 4′-glucoside (50%), free quercetin (30%) and quercetin 3,4′-glucoside (20%) as quercetin derivatives in boiling-water extraction.

According to the tested differentiation, in high-fat diet Wistar rats, additional OP did not show a significant difference in total cholesterol, HDL-cholesterol and triglyceride concentrations compared to rats fed a high-fat diet without OP.

However, the atherogenic index (AI) associated with cardiovascular disease risk of Wistar rats fed an OP-added high-fat diet was lower compared to those fed with a diet without OP.

Moreover, the incremental elastic modulus (IEM), a measurement of the stiffness of the larger arteries from rats fed the OP-added diet was also significantly lower compared to rats fed by diet without OP.

Additionally, both rat groups were found to exert similar AI and IEM values if the rats fed the diet without OP were allowed spontaneous exercise.

In other words, OP protected the cardio-tissue by exerting an anti-atherogenic effect through other unknown mechanisms associated with regular exercise, without affecting the parameters of cholesterol.

Based on the results, researchers wrote, “These results suggest that OP intake is effective for decreasing the risk of arteriosclerosis”.

Taken altogether, onion processed a higher mount of onionin A (ONA) may be considered a remedy for the prevention and treatment of arteriosclerosis, pending to the confirmation of the larger sample size and multicenter human study.

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Author Biography
Kyle J. Norton (Scholar, Master of Nutrition, All right reserved)

Health article writer and researcher; Over 10.000 articles and research papers have been written and published online, including worldwide health, ezine articles, article base, health blogs, self-growth, best before it’s news, the karate GB daily, etc.,.
Named TOP 50 MEDICAL ESSAYS FOR ARTISTS & AUTHORS TO READ by Named 50 of the best health Tweeters Canada – Huffington Post
Nominated for shorty award over last 4 years
Some articles have been used as references in medical research, such as international journal Pharma and Bioscience, ISSN 0975-6299.

(1) Physicochemical characteristics of rapidly dried onion powder and its anti-atherogenic effect on rats fed high-fat diet by Hamauzu Y1, Nosaka T2, Ito F3, Suzuki T4, Torisu S3, Hashida M5, Fukuzawa A6, Ohguchi M3, Yamanaka. (PubMed).
(2) Atheroprotective effects of HDL: beyond reverse cholesterol transport by Feig JE1, Shamir R, Fisher EA. (PubMed)