Skip to main content
Research article - Peer-reviewed, 2011

Selected Dietary Flavonoids are Associated with Markers off Inflammation and Endothelial Dysfunction in U.S. Women

Landberg, Rikard; Sun, Qi; Rimm, E B; Cassidy, A; Scalbert, A; Mantzoros, C S; Hu, Frank B.; van Dam, Rob M.


Flavonoids show antiinflammatory effects in vitro and human intervention studies have suggested beneficial effects of flavonoid-rich foods on biomarkers of inflammation and endothelial function. In the present study, we assessed the relationship between flavonoid intake and biomarkers of inflammation and endothelial dysfunction in a cross-sectional study of participants from the Nurses Health Study cohort Intake of 6 flavonoid subclasses (flavonols, flavones, flavanones, flavan-3-ols, anthocyanidins, and polymeric flavonoids) was assessed using a FFQ administered in 1990. Also, The main food sources of these flavonoids were examined. Blood samples were collected in 1989-1990 and plasma C-reactive protein (CRP). IL-6, IL-18, soluble tumor necrosis factor receptor-2 (5TNF-R2), soluble intercellular adhesion molecule-1, soluble vascular adhesion molecule-1 (sVCAM-1), and E-selectin were measured in 1194-1598 women. The multivariate-adjusted geometric mean of plasma IL-8 were lower for women in the highest intake quintile of flavones, flavanones, and total flavonoids compared with those in the lowest quintiles by 9% (Q1: 264 ng/L, Q5: 241 ng/L: P-trend = 0.019), 11% (Q1: 273 ng/L, Q5: 244 ng/L: P-trend = 0.011), and 8% (Q1: 276 ng/L, Q5: 55 ng/L; P-trend = 0.034), respectively. The multivariate-adjusted geometric mean for. women in the highest intake quintile of flavonol compared with those in the lowest quintile was 4% lower for sVCAM-1 (Q01: 578 mu g/L, 05: 557 mu g/L. P-trend = 0.012). Among flavonoid-rich foods, higher intake of grapefruit was significantly associated with lower concentrations of CRP and sTNF-R2. In summary, higher intakes of selected flavonoid subclasses were associated with modestly lower concentrations of inflammatory biomarkers. In particular. flavonoids typically found in citrus fruits were modestly associated with lower plasma IL-18 concentrations. J. Nutr. 141: 618-625, 2011.

Published in

Journal of Nutrition
2011, volume: 141, number: 4, pages: 618-625

Authors' information

Landberg, Rikard
Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Department of Food Science
Sun, Qi
Rimm, E B
Cassidy, A
Scalbert, A
Mantzoros, C S
Hu, Frank B.
van Dam, Rob M.

Sustainable Development Goals

SDG3 Good health and well-being

UKÄ Subject classification

Food Science

Publication Identifiers


URI (permanent link to this page)