Sydney: If you love apples, so also love the humble ba. Eating a ba daily is likely to boost eye health and prevent vision-related diseases, a study has found. Researchers have found that bas have carotenoid — a compound that turn fruits and vegetables red, orange or yellow and are converted into vitamin A, important precursors for eye health — in the liver. According to previous research, foods containing high levels of carotenoids also protect against chronic disease, including certain cancers, cardiovascular disease and diabetes. The study showed that ba rich in provitamin A carotenoids may offer a potential food source for alleviating vitamin A deficiency — important for sight.
To combat vitamin A deficiency, researchers have been investigating methods to boost carotenoids in bas.
Cara L. Mortimer and other researchers from Queensland University of Technology in Australia studied two ba varieties to find out why they make very different amounts of carotenoids.
They found that the pale yellow, low-carotenoid cavendish variety produces more of an enzyme that breaks down carotenoids.
In addition, another variety stashes its carotenoids in microscopic sacs during ripening, shifting the chemical equilibrium in the fruit so it can make even higher levels of these substances.
The findings can someday help in the development of ba varieties with enhanced health benefits.
Bas are ideal food for young children and families for many regions of the world, because of their sweetness, texture, portion size, familiarity, availability, convenience, versatility and cost. (IANS)