Posted on Sep 20, 2010, 6 a.m.
Certain varieties of sorghum bran contain more antioxidants than popular superfoods such as blueberries and pomegranates.
Researchers from the University of Georgia have found that certain varieties of sorghum bran (Sorghum bicolor) contain significantly greater amounts of antioxidants than the popular superfoods blueberries and pomegranate. Diana Hartle and colleagues determined the level of polyphenolic compounds, antioxidants which naturally occur in plants, in black and sumac varieties of sorghum bran, both of which contain high levels of tannins. Results showed that the levels of polyphenolic compounds in these high-tannin varieties ranged from 23 to 62 mg of polyphenolics per gram. In comparison, blueberries contain 5 mg of polyphenolics per gram, while pomegranate juice contains just 2 to 3.5 mg per gram. The researchers also investigated whether different varieties of sorghum (two low-tannin and two high-tannin) were able to reduce inflammation in mice. Results showed that the high-tannin varieties (black and sumac) possessed significant anti-inflammatory activity. “Since most human chronic disease states are associated with chronic inflammation and high oxidative stress, a food ingredient such as sorghum bran could potentially make certain processed foods better for a healthy diet,” concluded study co-author Diane Hartle. The Great Plains area of the U.S. is the largest worldwide producer of sorghum, the researchers believe that the combination of its low price and high antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties will make it a very useful and inexpensive nutritional food additive.
Burdette A, Garner PL, Mayer EP, Hargrove JL, Hartle DK, Greenspan P. Anti-inflammatory activity of select Sorghum (Sorghum bicolor) brans. Journal of Medicinal Food. 2010; August:879-887.