Xanthophyll bCryptoxanthin

/3-Cryptoxanthin is one of the lesser known carote-noids that also has provitamin A activity and appears to have a protective health role. Several epidemiological studies suggest that dietary /3-cryptoxanthin is associated with lower rates of lung cancer and improved lung function in humans. A large prospective study on dietary intake and cancer, which included an interview on dietary habits and life style, identified ^-cryptoxanthin as protective against lung cancer after correcting for smoking. However, the beneficial effects for ^-cryptoxanthin suggested by these results could be merely an indicator for other antioxidants and/or a measure of a healthy life style that are more common in people with high dietary intakes of ^-cryptoxanthin. In tissue culture, ^-cryptoxanthin has a direct stimulatory effect on bone formation and an inhibitory effect on bone resorption. Studies of these beneficial effects in humans have not been conducted.

No deficiency or toxicity has been observed from dietary ^-cryptoxanthin intake. The best food sources for ^-cryptoxanthin are oranges, papaya, peaches, and tangerines. Tropical fruit intake is directly proportional to ^-cryptoxanthin blood concentrations.

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