Lychee Fruit May Offer Anti-Inflammatory Properties, Study Suggests

Purchase, NY—A trial published in Nutrition Research and Practice suggests a branded lychee fruit polyphenol (Oligonol from Maypro Industries, located here) may offer anti-inflammatory properties. This branded extract is said to offer improved bioavailabilty and low-molecular weight polyphenols. Says the company. Researchers at the Department of Physiology, College of Medicine, Soonchunhyang University investigated the effects of the lychee extract intake on cortisol, interleukin and IL-6 concentrations in the blood during relaxation and after exercise in 19 healthy males. Participants received 0.5 liters of water with the lychee extract (100 mg) or a placebo on a daily basis for four weeks. The men’s body composition, white blood cell counts and differential counts and the aforementioned were examined inflammatory markers before and after the lychee extract were taken. The cortisol concentration and serum levels of IL-1β and IL-6 after lychee extract intake were drastically lowered as opposed to before supplementation. Also, the rate in which these factors increased after exercise was reduced compared to that of the placebo group. However, it should be noted that there was no variance in white blood count and differential cell counts. Results indicate that oral lychee extract inhibited certain inflammatory markers in the study participants. Dr. Dan Kenner, alternative healthcare writer and consultant, notes, “Although a number of studies have demonstrated the anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory properties of Oligonol, this is the first published trial in humans that confirms a important role for Oligonol as an anti-inflammatory agent.” 

Published in Whole Foods Magazine, April 2011 (online 3/4/11)