Sunday, May 4, 2014

High Oleic Acid Peanuts from Kingaroy area

Here's another item also written recently for the TSGS Groundswell  newsletter

High Oleic Acid Peanuts

Over Easter, Anne and I along with Doug, Michelle, Liz and Brian from TSGS, visited a peanut farm in Kingaroy as part of our visit to that area.

A representative from the Peanut Company of Australia talked about the health benefits of the peanut variety grown in the South Burnett that is high in Oleic acid and Resveratrol but low in Linoleic acid. This was new information to me as I previously had largely ignored this food item because of the association of peanuts with quite severe food allergies in some people.

Oleic acid (also found in olive oil) is an interesting food component that has effects on reducing hunger, decreases lipids (cholesterol and triglycerides) in the blood stream, increases the oxidation of lipids and inhibits the action of a couple of hormones that stimulate storage of fat around the abdomen.

Resveratrol (also found in grapes, blueberries and dark chocolate) is a polyphenol
that inhibits the formation of new fat cells, induces fat cells to die and has an anti-inflammatory effect in arthritic joints. It also reduces cholesterol and makes the signals in the brain work better about how much fat tissue is present (obesity in part seems to be a signalling failure)

The other aspect that is important is that the peanuts from this area are low in linoleic acid. This is an ingredient that is becoming suspect as a trigger for obesity and is mainly to be found in the seed oils such as canola, palm oil, cotton seed oil and the like. Extra Virgin olive oil, butter and coconut oil are low in this type of omega 6 fatty acid and peanuts from the South Burnett also fall into this category.

As long as you do not have a peanut allergy then eating some peanuts could be part of a healthy diet in my opinion. They should be sourced from the South Burnett as this is a particular variety that is grown there – imported peanuts are not this variety as far as I am aware and are not high in oleic acid. Peanuts need to be dry and should be kept refrigerated to prevent the fatty acids being oxidised and becoming rancid. Roasted seems to be ok but definitely not salted for other health reasons.

Anne and I are going to try and grow some, however they are a warm season crop. In the meantime we are going to try and locate a convenient source of supply.

Other things we did in Kingaroy was to visit the Wondai Garden Expo – it was really good with lots of plant stalls that had quite different items. The Maidenwell Observatory was also good but the viewing was restricted because of numbers present that night. We also visited a few wineries! Evenings were spent playing cards and “sampling” the wine purchases. All told the Easter trip was most enjoyable in the company of some fellow TSGS members.

1.Alves RD1, Moreira AP, Macedo VS, et al Regular intake of high-oleic peanuts improves fat oxidation and body composition in overweight/obese men pursuing a energy-restricted diet.Obesity (Silver Spring). 2014 Mar 18.

2. Eseberri I, Lasa A, Churruca I, Portillo MP. Resveratrol metabolites modify adipokine expression and secretion in 3T3-L1 pre-adipocytes and mature adipocytes. PLoS One. 2013 May 22;8(5):e63918 

Rosella and Ginger help prevent obesity

Here is an article I wrote recently for the TSGS groundswell newsletter

Rosella and Ginger - help prevent obesity

With a professional interest in diabetes and obesity I am always on the lookout for scientific articles that are useful in terms of advice I can provide to my patients.

Here are two that I have recently read (they are available in my favourite website pubmed):

Hibiscus sabdariffa extract inhibits obesity and fat accumulation, and improves liver steatosis in humans.
Chang HC, Peng CH, Yeh DM, et al. Food Funct. 2014 Apr 26;5(4):734-9.

Hibiscus sabdariffa is commonly known as Rosella. In this study overweight patients were divided into two groups - a control group and a second group that were given an extract of Rosella. The study was over 12 weeks. The Rosella extract group had a lower mean body mass and reduced waist to hip ratio at the end of the 12 weeks compared to the control group. Another finding was a lowering of serum free fatty acids – this is a biochemical finding associated with the “metabolic syndrome” of elevated cholesterol, hypertension and diabetes.

Rosella is readily grown in the warmer months in our garden in Chandler. Our current plants are on their “last legs” but we have several bags of rosella in the freezer that should last awhile. We do not cook it but simply add some to our fruit mix for breakfast.

Antiobesity action of gingerol: Effect on lipid profile, insulin, leptin, amylase and lipase on male obese rats induced by a high-fat diet.
Saravanan G1, Ponmurugan P, Deepa MA, Senthilkumar B.J Sci Food Agric. 2014 Mar 10.

This study investigated the effect of gingerol - a component of ginger – on several parameters including weight, serum glucose and insulin in diet induced obese rats.

The obese rats were divided into 4 groups, with three being given different amounts of gingerol (25, 50 or 75mg/kg/day) and a control group being given an anti-obesity drug. The rats given gingerol had a significant reduction in blood glucose levels, body weight, and insulin resistance with the higher dose of gingerol having the most effect. The anti-obesity drug had a similar effect to the highest dose of gingerol.

Rat studies are interesting but there is always the concern that the findings may not be applicable to humans. However ginger has such a long history of use for health reasons in Asia and India I think this study is relevant.

Ginger and Galangal also grow readily in our garden. We bandicoot some root and freeze. Each morning we grate some (unfrozen it grates really well) onto our fruit mix for breakfast.