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Goji Berry May Help Support Vascular Health

The goji berry, also called the wolfberry, is a bright orange-red berry that comes from a shrub that's native to China. A new study has found that following a healthy diet and consuming one and a half ounces of goji berry daily may help improve vascular health and lower cardiovascular disease risk.

Forty adults with an average age of 56 participated in the study, which lasted 16 weeks. All were given counseling on how to follow a healthy dietary pattern. In addition, half of them consumed half an ounce of cooked, whole, dried goji berry with their main meals.

The researchers measured flow-mediated dilation, total plasma levels of nitrate and nitrite, endothelin-1 concentrations, vascular structure, and HDL cholesterol at baseline and at the end of the study period. They also assessed the Framingham predicted long term cardiovascular risk.

Participants in the goji berry group saw significant increases in total nitrite and nitrate concentrations. They also saw reductions in endothelin-1 concentrations, which indicates improved vascular function. In addition, they saw significant increases in HDL cholesterol, lower Framingham predicted long-term CVD risk, and lower vascular age.

The study was conducted by researchers from the National University of Singapore. It was published online ahead of print on May 8, 2021, in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.

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