You already know that fresh fruit and vegetables help you live a longer, healthier life. They contain loads of vitamins and healthy nutrients that feed your body in the most natural and beneficial way.
A new study now reveals even more benefits to some of them – apples and green tomatoes prevent your muscles from ageing.
A team of researchers from the University of Iowa identified two natural compounds that are found in these foods that have the role of reducing the protein’s activity in muscle that has started to age. This protein is called ATF4 and it modifies the gene in skeletal muscles, which leads to a decrease in terms of protein synthesis, mass and strength.
Thus, the tomatidine, which can be found in green tomatoes and the ursolic acid from apple peel impede muscle waste which is usually caused by either inactivity or starvation. By far the main cause for muscle atrophy is considered to be ageing, so the scientists believe it would be useful to look deeper into the matter in order to determine up to what extent these two components can prevent that.
Ursolic acid and tomatidine appear to have a lot of potential as tools for dealing with muscle weakness and atrophy during ageing,” stated senior study author Christopher Adams, who is a professor of medicine at the University of Iowa.
If further research confirms the theories, there could be new treatment available for muscle atrophy that is caused by ageing. Both of these compounds managed to increase muscle mass by as much as 10 percent, while they boosted the muscle strength or quality by 30 percent.
“By reducing the protein’s activity, ursolic acid and tomatidine allow skeletal muscle to recover from effects of ageing,” said Christopher Adams.
The experiment was only carried out on mice at this point, but it is possible to extend it to humans quite soon.
The mice selected for the study were old and already suffered from muscle loss and atrophy that were age-related. Some of them were given food that contained about 0.27 ursolic acid, others were fed a diet that contained 0,05 percent tomatidine and the remaining mice were not given any of these compounds.
After the researchers assessed the mice’s physical shape, the researchers noted that those who benefited from either of the two compounds had increased their muscle mass by 10 percent and their muscle strength by 30 percent.
The results of the study were published in the Journal of Biological Chemistry
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