Imagine a team of scientists working on diets that will benefit your cardiovascular health. I would like to introduce the FLORA project, European-based and European-funded. FLORA stands for “flavonoids and related phenolics for healthy living using orally recommended antioxidants.”
According to the FLORA site
“There is a growing body of evidence that bioactive compounds in the diet play an important role in optimizing health. Flavonoids and other phenolics are examples of a class of plant- specific bioactive compounds that confer beneficial effects on a number of important risk factors for cardiovascular disease and other age-related degenerative diseases. Dietary intake of flavonoids and related phenolics has been linked positively to reduced incidence of stroke, allergies, certain forms of cancer, liver disease and inflammation. Thus, a better understanding of the biological effects of different dietary flavonoids and phenolics, will provide important clues to their impact on health… That is why FLORA has decided to explore the dynamics triggered by flavonoids and phenolics in order to promote health through a diet that will appeal to the diversity of tastes of European consumers.”
Unfortunately, the average consumer does not seem to get enough flavonoids and phenolics and in their diet. The main sources of these healthy compounds are certain fruits and vegetables which are too expensive, seasonal, or have short shelf-life, thus making them consumer-friendly. In order to promote health through proper diet, FLORA scientists came up with several innovative products.
Oranges are rich in flavonoids and phenolics. FLORA however, went further and “redesigned” these oranges that their antioxidant content is increased several times the normal oranges. Thus, a freshly squeezed glass of FLORA oranges may actually provide you with most of your daily antioxidant requirement.
Tomatoes are one of a kind. Unlike other fresh produce that lose their nutritional value with processing, tomatoes keep – even increase their nutrients with pressing, cooking, etc. Now, FLORA even made the tomato more nutritious by incorporating a snapdragon pigmentation gene into it – and Voila! – we have the purple tomato. The FLORA purple tomatoes have almost three times the amount of the antioxidant compound anthocyanins compared to red and green tomatoes. They are not only good for the heart, they have anti-cancer properties as well.
These are just a few of the amazing health products that the FLORA group has produced – products which we consume in large quantities and are easily available the whole year round FLORA’s motto is “from farm to fork” and its mission is “bringing on the table what is produced in the farm” but in better, more nutritious forms.
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