Foods rich in flavan 3-ols are known to prevent cardiovascular diseases by reducing metabolic syndrome risks, such as hypertension, hyperglycemia, and dyslipidemia. However, the mechanisms involved in this reduction are unclear, particularly because of the poor bioavailability of flavan 3-ols. Recent metabolome analyses of feces produced after repeated ingestion of foods rich in flavan 3-ols may provide insight into the chronic physiological changes associated with the intake of flavan 3-ols. Substantial postprandial changes have been reported after flavan 3-ol ingestion, including hemodynamic and metabolic changes as well as autonomic and central nervous alterations. Taken together, the evidence suggests that flavan 3-ols have both postprandial and chronic effects, which could involve different or common mechanisms. In general, the accumulation of acute functional changes induces chronic physiological alteration. Therefore, this review highlights the postprandial action of flavan 3-ols in order to address the yet unknown mechanism(s) for their physiological function.
ASJC Scopus subject areas