Effectiveness in improving serum antioxidant status of two functional pastas was evaluated by the novel Antioxidant/ Oxidant Balance (AOB) parameter, calculated as Antioxidant Capacity (AC)/Peroxide Level ratio, assessed here for the first time. In particular, Bran Oleoresin (BO) and Bran Water (BW) pastas, enriched respectively with either lipophilic (tocochromanols, carotenoids) or hydrophilic/phenolic antioxidants extracted from durum wheat bran, were studied. Notably, BO pasta was able to improve significantly (+65%) serum AOB during four hours after intake similarly to Lisosan G, a wheat antioxidant-rich dietary supplement. Contrarily, BW pasta had oxidative effect on serum so as conventional pasta and glucose, thus suggesting greater effectiveness of lipophilic than hydrophilic/phenolic antioxidants under our experimental conditions. Interestingly, no clear differences between the two pastas were observed, when AC measurements of either serum after pasta intake or pasta extracts by in vitro assays were considered, thus strengthening effectiveness and reliability of AOB approach.
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