The role of polyphenols in ulcerative colitis


Extra virgin olive oil rich in polyphenols may have anti-inflammatory effects and counteract the symptoms of ulcerative colitis. This is the conclusion reached by the study published in the Journal of Nutritional Biochemistry, which tested on laboratory guinea pigs the action of antioxidant substances contained in extra virgin olive oil.
The researchers induced chronic colitis in mice subjected to the experiment, then divided them into four groups subjected to as many diets. In animals fed a diet of extra virgin oil high in polyphenols (850 ppm) alone, there was a marked decrease in inflammatory status. In contrast, the disease evolved negatively in the other cases, even when the standard diet was combined with the same dose of polyphenols.
Ascertaining the degree of inflammation is based on two classes of parameters, a group headed by the international DAI index and a series of histological sampling and analysis. One can only hope that this evidence will be submitted to Efsa, with a view to scientific validation of a new claim for extra virgin olive oil.