An epidemic of chronic non-communicable diseases is sweeping the globe. It is afflicting especially vulnerable groups in urban settings. Upstream factors include societal problems such as loss of social cohesion, chronic stress, poverty and unhealthy food environments.
Much of the global burden of disease is directly related to dietary quality and quantity. Whilst inadequate nutrition (protein, energy and micronutrients) is estimated to be responsible for more than 10% of the global disease burden, the other extreme of over-nutrition, or excess dietary consumption, is driving global epidemics of obesity and associated comorbidities such as diabetes, cardiovascular diseases,...
Roughly 30% of the population is affected by at least one of the several functional gastrointestinal disorders (FGIDs) with functional dyspepsia, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and chronic constipation (CC) being the most common.
Digestive discomfort, including constipation is a common condition throughout the world and is reported to affect around 15% of adults in western countries. Gastrointestinal discomfort and bowel habit are two target areas for potential health claims for foods identified by EFSA.
Kiwifruit (Actinidia deliciosa) hosts a number of beneficial properties for gut health; in addition to its high fibre content, water holding capacity and levels of the vitamins C and E, consumption has been reported to provide relief of symptoms of gastrointestinal discomfort.
Vitamin C is an essential micronutrient. Unlike most animals, we have lost the ability to synthesise our own vitamin C and must therefore obtain it from our diet. Fresh fruit and vegetables are the best source of vitamin C, and regular and adequate daily intake of vitamin C is required to prevent marginal vitamin C status (hypovitaminosis C) and...
A ripe kiwifruit is a luscious, sweet, carbohydrate-rich food – the kind of food that would be expected to raise blood glucose concentrations. However, kiwifruit is also nutrient dense and capable of promoting health in numerous ways.
The research presented attempts to understand how kiwifruit impacts upon microbial composition and metabolism in the human large bowel using in vitro fermentation systems. Kiwifruit contains non-digestible polysaccharides (2-3%) as well as other compounds including polyphenols, fatty and organic acids, proteins, vitamins and minerals that may alter microbial ecology in the large bowel.