Newswise — A special supplement to the June 2013 issue of the Journal of Food Science highlights new studies and research that show the health benefits of consuming raisins.

Read the full supplement here

After-School Snack of Raisins and Grapes Lowers Food Intake in Young ChildrenA new study analyzed the caloric intake of 26 eight- to 11-year-old normal weight children who were given either raisins, grapes, potato chips, and chocolate chip cookies as a snack. They were allowed to eat until comfortably full. The researchers found that raisins and grapes led to lower cumulative food intake, while the cookies increased cumulative food intake compared to the other snacks. In addition to promoting a feeling of fullness, raisins provide valuable nutrients for children such as fiber, antioxidants, vitamin C, potassium, and iron.

New Findings Provide Evidence Raisins May Protect Against CavitiesIt’s been traditionally thought raisins can cause cavities because of their stickiness and sugar content. However, current research suggests that raisins may provide some protective benefits against dental cavities. Even though raisins are sticky, it was found that they do not adhere to the teeth long enough to promote dental cavity formation and may even help clear other types of food particles trapped on the teeth.

Raisins Have Potential to Reduce Risk of Diabetes and Heart DiseaseBased on a comprehensive review of nearly 80 studies, researchers found that raisin consumption may reduce the risk of developing diabetes and heart disease, contribute to improved blood glucose control for diabetic individuals, and be useful for weight loss and weight management.

Consumption of Grape Products Associated with Better Eating HabitsAn analysis of National Health Examination Survey (NHANES) 2003 to 2008 data was conducted to compare grape consumers with nongrape consumers among children and adults. The results showed that both children and adults that consumed grape products (fresh grapes, raisins, 100 percent grape juice), had higher total intake of other fruits, dark green/orange vegetables, and key nutrients like fiber, vitamin A, vitamin C, calcium, magnesium and potassium than those who did not consume grape products. In addition, grape product consumers ate less fat, added sugars, and alcohol resulting in lower calorie consumption.

Editor’s Note: This supplement was funded by the California Raisin Marketing Board. All of the articles were peer reviewed.

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Journal of Food Science