Myth: Consuming foods rich in flavonoids has no impact on weight
Truth: This appears to be false.
For many individuals, experiencing weight fluctuations is a normal occurrence. However, data suggests that women, more so than men, experience these weight fluctuations as well as gains in fat mass. Flavonoids are a group of compounds originating in plants and fungi that are found in many of the foods that we consume, such as fruits and veggies, cocoa, and even wine.
Flavonoids, which include the subgroups anthoxanthins, flavanones, flavanonols, flavans, and anthocyanidins, have many known health benefits for humans, such as their role as antioxidants and as anti-inflammatory molecules. Lately, there has been speculation that flavonoids also play a role in the way the body controls gains in weight and fat mass.
A study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition examined women and their identical twins, trying to determine how flavonoids affect fat mass ratio, fat mass distributions, and changes in weight. Through this study, researchers have found multiple findings of value.
The first of which is that favourable fat mass distribution was correlated with particular subclasses of flavonoids such as anthocyanidins and flavans. Also, the evidence indicates that when comparing twins, the one that consumed more flavans and anthocyanidins, had a lower fat mass ratio than the other. Interestingly, this relationship was only observed in younger women. While this new data is fascinating, it is important to remember that everybody is genetically different, and therefore these results may not be applicable to all.
To read more about flavonoids and their effect on weight click here.
- Jennings A, MacGregor A, Spector T, Cassidy A. Higher dietary flavonoid intakes are associated with lower objectively measured body composition in women: evidence from discordant monozygotic twins. Am J Clin Nutr. 2017;105(3):626-634. doi:10.3945/ajcn.116.144394