WHAT IS APIGENIN?
Apigenin is one of the many flavones that can be found in plant based foods and is part of the phytonutrient family (a group of chemical compounds that occur naturally in plants and have multiple health benefits but are not considered essential to human health). In this article I will be discussing apigenin in greater detail.
WHEN WAS APIGENIN DISCOVERED?
Apigenin was discovered in 1938 by the Hungarian biochemist Albert Szent-Györgyi as part of the flavonoid family. He initially referred to the flavonoids as vitamin P but it was later discovered that they are not essential to human health and therefore not technically vitamins.
HOW DOES YOUR BODY USE APIGENIN?
Apigenin is a powerful antioxidant (a substance which protects the body’s cells from oxygen related damage) which can prevent a number of allergies and cancers. The list below outlines the main benefits of apigenin:
– Acting as an anti-inflammatory (a substance that reduces inflammation in the body’s cells).
– Acting as an antioxidant and protecting your body from dangerous free radicals (harmful by-products of oxygen related reactions).
– Acting as an antispasmodic (a substance which prevents muscle spasms).
– Preventing allergies (such as asthma, food allergies and seasonal allergies).
– Preventing atherosclerosis (a condition where hard plaques form in the artery walls and restrict the flow of blood which ultimately increases your heart disease risk).
– Preventing multiple types of cancer (including breast cancer, colon cancer, leukaemia, lung cancer, ovarian cancer, prostate cancer, skin cancer and thyroid cancer).
– Protecting deoxyribonucleic acid (the body’s main genetic information carrier which is also known as DNA) from free radical damage.
– Reducing blood levels of low density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol (a type of cholesterol which can cause blockages in the arteries and increase your heart disease risk).
HOW MUCH APIGENIN DO YOU NEED?
Apigenin is not considered essential for human health so no recommended daily allowance (RDA) has been established.
WHICH FOODS CONTAIN APIGENIN?
Herbs and spices are often the best source of apigenin. However, green leafy vegetables and even red wine also contain good amounts of this phytonutrient. The table below lists some of the best apigenin foods:
|FOOD||MILLIGRAMS (MG) OF APIGENIN PER 100 GRAMS (G)
|Green Celery Hearts||19.1|
WHAT ARE THE SYMPTOMS OF GETTING TOO MUCH APIGENIN?
Consuming extremely high amounts of apigenin has been shown to interfere with the action of certain chemotherapeutic agents and can actually inhibit cancer treatment.
WHAT ARE THE SYMPTOMS OF NOT GETTING ENOUGH APIGENIN?
Apigenin is not classed as an essential nutrient in humans so there no reported deficiency symptoms.
Whilst there is only limited research available on apigenin, the early signs are very promising when it comes to cancer prevention. So if you want to ensure that you get all the benefits of this powerful phytonutrient, start adding more herbs and spices to your cooking and make sure you fill up on green leafy vegetables at every opportunity.
Apigenin Overview (Life Extension)
Spicy Cancer-Fighting Herbal Compound – Apigenin (Ezine Articles)
List of Phytochemicals in Food (Wikipedia)
What is Phytochemical? (Juicing For Health)
USDA Database for the Flavonoid Content of Selected Foods