Luteolin is a flavonoid generally found in plants such as cannabis. It is also present in clover blossoms, leaves, and barks and has many beneficial effects.
Keep reading to know more about luteolin, its benefits, side effects, doses, and food items rich with this flavonoid.
Plant flavonoids like luteolin have anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. They are known to protect from chronic inflammatory conditions, cancer, and heart diseases.
In plants, flavonoids are present in a glycosylated form. But when we consume them, they become hydrolyzed, which releases luteolin.
In addition, it’s a heat-stable flavonoid. That means even if you cook vegetables at high temperatures, this flavonoid won’t degenerate.
Potential Benefits and Uses of Luteolin
Here are a few potential benefits of luteolin:
Stabilizing the Mast Cells
Mast cells are our body’s defense mechanism. They protect us from bacterial attacks. While the mast cells help with immunity, they can sometimes have severe side effects on people with certain allergies.
When our body has a smaller amount of allergens, immunoglobulin IgE is released in the body. But when allergy increases, mast cells degenerate, resulting in the release of the hormone histamine. It causes congestion, extreme sneezing, or even brain fog.
In this case, you must consume luteolin as it can stop the degranulation of mast cells. Luteolin that is extracted from the peppermint leaf prevents histamine. It can also help in improving allergy symptoms.
You can apply luteolin-rich peppermint oil, as it is known to reduce allergic itching. Also, luteolin can decrease allergic nasal inflammation.
Like any other flavonoid, luteolin also has antioxidant properties. Reactive Oxygen Species (ROS) is a group of reactive species with a short life span. When ROS is produced in large amounts, it can damage DNA, protein, and lipids.
It can cause cancer, cardiovascular disease, and more. But the presence of luteolin in the body can prevent the damages caused by ROS. First, Luteolin uses its mechanism to look for ROS. Then, once ROS is hunted down, luteolin inhibits its generation.
Estrogenic Activity and Anti-Estrogenic Activity
The primary function of the hormone estrogen is the proliferation and differentiation of its target cells. It’s done by activating the estrogen receptor. This receptor is responsible for stimulating DNA synthesis.
Here, luteolin can bind to the estrogen receptor to activate their pathway. Luteolin is a type of flavonoid, which is a phytoestrogen.
As luteolin has the necessary properties, it can act as a replacement for estrogen even at low levels. For this reason, luteolin can be used as an agent in hormone replacement therapy.
In addition, luteolin is also likely to show some anti-estrogenic properties. It is possible because flavonoids have a low binding rate with the receptor. When the estrogen level in the body decreases, luteolin binds to the receptors.
But when the hormone concentration changes, luteolin is seen competing with it for the receptor. One of the causes of prostate, breast, or ovarian cancer is increased estrogen levels.
By including luteolin in your diet, you can stay away from these diseases because luteolin acts as a competitor for estrogen.
When the body encounters foreign particles, inflammation acts as its defense mechanism. But chronic inflammation can result in arthritis, cancer, and more. These diseases can be fatal.
Inflammation in the body mostly occurs when macrophages are activated. This activation can happen due to cytokines releases from the host.
What happens is that when gram-negative bacteria attack the body, the outer membrane of the microbe causes inflammation. This further results in inflammation cell accumulation, which clears pathogens.
But when these reactions happen frequently, they can cause severe diseases like cancer. You can consume luteolin to reduce non-allergic inflammation. Regular consumption of these flavonoids can decrease the production of cytokines.
This way, long-term diseases like cancer and arthritis are prevented. Luteolin can also reduce inflammation related to the guts.
When cells in the body mutate and divide unnaturally, they cause cancer. The cell cycle control can be lost for any reason. So, the cells keep growing, which ultimately forms a tumor.
But you can prevent this unnatural cell growth with the help of luteolin. This flavonoid improves the cell cycle by interfering with abnormal cell growth.
Cancer cells are also known to have a property called metastasis, which makes them travel from one body part to another. It causes maximum fatalities in cancer.
You can control metastasis with luteolin because this flavonoid can suppress the production of cytokines. Metastasis and migration of cancer cells happen due to cytokines.
Luteolin is also known to block the pathway that cancer cells use for metastasis and migration.
Luteolin can reduce stress and anxiety. So, you must consume food items that are rich in this flavonoid. In addition, it can also promote better social interaction.
Luteolin can be found in food items, but you can also consume its supplements. Commonly, the supplements are available in powders, pills, and chewable tablets.
Most of these supplements contain luteolin and rutin (a flavonoid from quercetin). The product doses range from 100-300 mg per serving.
Why Should You Consume Luteolin Supplement?
Luteolin supplements offer antioxidant properties, which help the body manage, prevent or eliminate inflammation. This way, diseases that are associated with inflammation are reduced.
In addition, this supplement can also support memory and the nervous system with its antioxidant abilities. So, you must consume the supplements to have a balanced level of luteolin in your body.
Side Effects and Risks of Luteolin
Luteolin is mostly safe for consumption, but people who take flavonoids in high doses can face side effects. However, these are rare instances.
Before you include luteolin supplements in your diet, you must consult with your doctor. Like other dietary supplements, this one is also not FDA-approved.
Adding a luteolin supplement to your diet might not be good if you take blood pressure medicines. Also, you must not combine this supplement with calcium channel blockers and similar prescribed drugs.
Children are not encouraged to consume luteolin. Similarly, pregnant women must also avoid this flavonoid because it can interfere with pregnancy hormones.
Signs You Might Need Luteolin
If your body needs luteolin, it will give out signs.
For instance, poor neurological functions are one of the common indications that your body needs luteolin. These functions include motor skills, memory, and learning. It mainly happens among people who are aged 50 and above.
Besides this, wrinkles and skin lesions are visible signs indicating that you need luteolin in your diet. Also, if you are dealing with inflammatory conditions, it’s a sign that you must include luteolin in your diet.
Food Items Rich in Luteolin
Luteolin is rich in antioxidants. It can also improve memory and symptoms of anxiety. But what food items are rich in luteolin? Here’s the list:
Parsley is considered the key source of micronutrients. Luteolin, present in parsley, can help with mental fitness and energy levels.
The purple leafy vegetable, radicchio, is loaded with luteolin. You can add it to your salad or wraps.
Green Bell Peppers
These are also rich in luteolin and contain bioactive compounds that exhibit antibacterial and antifungal properties. You can eat bell peppers raw to get their maximum benefits.
Whether you like your celery raw, cooked, or juiced, each version has luteolin. Regular consumption of this veggie can increase the anti-inflammatory luteolin in your diet.
Celery has become a staple in many dishes. In addition, it makes delicious hydrating and crunchy snacks.
The autumn dietary staple, pumpkin, is a good source of luteolin. You can roast pumpkin or make warm soup with spices to add to your diet.
Another green leafy vegetable that is rich in luteolin is chicory greens. As it has a robust flavor profile, you can enjoy it as soup or stews to have a balanced level of luteolin in your body.
Kohlrabi is a cruciferous veggie that tastes similar to the broccoli stem. You can include it in vegetable grills or salads to get luteolin in your diet.
You can get your daily dose of luteolin by consuming these food items. While common food items have this flavonoid, you can take its supplements to maintain a balanced level in your body.
Luteolin is a flavonoid that is loaded with antioxidant properties. It is present in food items like vegetables, leafy greens, citrus fruits, and spices.
Including luteolin in your diet can boost cardiovascular health, protect the brain and nerves, reduce inflammation and allergies, and promote testosterone levels.
Along with consuming food items rich in luteolin, you can also include luteolin supplements in your diet. But pregnant ladies and children must not consume it. Also, you must consult a doctor before adding this supplement to your diet.