It has been well established that a vegetarian and polyphenol-rich diet, including fruits, vegetables, teas, juices, wine, indigestible fiber and whole grains, provide health-promoting phytochemicals and phytonutrients that are beneficial for the heart and brain. What is not well-characterized is the affect these foods have when co-metabolized within our dynamic gut and its colonizing flora. The concept of a heart shunt within the microbiota-gut-brain axis underscores the close association between brain and heart health and the so-called "French paradox" offers clues for understanding neurodegenerative and cerebrovascular diseases. Moreover, oxidation-redox reactions and redox properties of so-called brain and heart-protective foods are underappreciated as to their enhanced or deleterious mechanisms of action. Focusing on prodromal stages, and common mechanisms underlying heart, cerebrovascular and neurodegenerative diseases, we may unmask and understanding the means to better treat these related diseases.



Research Center/Lab(s)

Center for Research in Energy and Environment (CREE)

Keywords and Phrases

Alzheimer; Blood brain barrier; Celiac disease; Cerebrovascular; Co-metabolism; French paradox; Heart brain shunt; HMG-Co A; Leaky gut; Microbiota-gut-brain axis; Polyphenol; Red wine; Redox; TMANO; TMAO; Trimethyl-Amine-N-Oxide; Vascular dementia

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

2076-2607; 2076-2607

Document Type

Article - Journal

Document Version

Final Version

File Type





© 2020 The Authors, All rights reserved.

Creative Commons Licensing

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Publication Date

30 Mar 2020

Included in

Chemistry Commons