One of the most important qualities of quercetin is that it inhibits the growth of malignant cells, which, in turn, prevents cancer. Apart from this, it has anti-inflammatory as well as antioxidant properties, which helps in treating and preventing several health problems. This Buzzle article helps you comprehend the benefits of this magical compound.
A plant derived flavonoid, a potent antioxidant, quercetin is one of the compounds that belongs to a group of plant pigments. This plant pigment is responsible for the coloring of many fruits, flowers, and vegetables.
As quercetin is an antioxidant, its effect is implied to be helpful for human health and wellness. Still under research, its benefits need more understanding and studying, nevertheless, they seem promising.
The antioxidant properties present in this compound, show a remarkable ability for reducing the risk of plaque buildup in the arteries, also known as atherosclerosis. Its anti-inflammatory properties also prevent damage caused by LDL cholesterol, which is another reason for heart disease. As this antioxidant is found in vegetables and fruits, a high consumption of these foods, aids in building heart strength. Blood pressure or hypertension can also be brought under control with adequate supplementation of quercetin.
Protection Against Allergies
Its anti-inflammatory properties have been tested against most allergic reactions such as, asthma, hives, hay fever, allergic cough, etc., but so far, only in a laboratory controlled environment. It has shown promise as it inhibits production and release of histamine and other inflammatory mediators. Hence, it can reduce the chances of being infected with allergic conditions, and also, help in speedy recovery from such allergies.
Possible Cancer Protection
Quercetin, like all other antioxidants, has been researched for their cancer inhibiting properties. As an antioxidant, it protects cells from free radicals by neutralizing their ill effects and reducing their growth in the body. In vitro, studies have indicated that it can control the growth of cancer cells, and can reduce the risk of developing, breast, prostate, ovarian, and colon cancer. It may also help those suffering from chronic prostatitis and interstitial cystitis because of its action as a mast cell inhibitor.
A few laboratory studies suggest that quercetin is a neurotoxin in vitro, hence, could be helpful against neurological diseases. However, this stance is yet viewed with skepticism. As this antioxidant compound helps in controlling free radicals, its possible skin care benefits are also being studied. It is also known to increase immune endurance and viability, hence is viewed as an important nutritional supplement for athletes.
As it is a naturally occurring antioxidant, quercetin found in plants, usually does not have side effects. However, some people have reported a slight inconvenience when they consumed it as a nutritional supplement. Sweating, shortness of breath, and nausea and vomiting are a few mild side effects. It can cause sores, headaches, and upset the digestive system of the individuals, who are sensitive to citrus fruits. It could also interfere with the functioning and benefits of other dietary supplements. Taken on an empty stomach may cause heartburn or acid reflux. Although, naturally, too much quercetin may not cause any problems, however, if taken in large doses as a supplement, it may cause complications.
Benefits of this compound can be obtained by eating foods like, organic tomatoes, apples, grapes, citrus fruits, berries, and leafy vegetables, or from dietary supplements, but only after consulting your physician.