To avoid the damage that alcohol can cause to your stomach, a new study found, you may simply need to eat strawberry extract before you start swigging.
The study, which included 36 rats divided into six study groups, adds to prior evidence that fruits and vegetables can protect against ulcers, cancers and other problems in the gastrointestinal system. Antioxidants seem to explain why, according to the paper, which was published in the journal PLoS One. The more of a pigment called anthocyanin the rats consumed over 10 days before taking ethanol, the better the linings of their stomachs held up.
Unfortunately, the results don't suggest that eating strawberries every day can help protect people against hangovers or other negative consequences of drinking alcohol, said Maurizio Battino, coordinator of the research group at the Marche Polytechnic University in Ancona, Italy, and editor-in-chief of the Journal of Berry Research.
But strawberries may help protect against gastric ulcers and related issues that result from viruses and other causes. Better yet, scientists may now be closer to isolating the active ingredients in strawberries and using those compounds to create better anti-inflammatory drugs and more protective antioxidant-based medicines.
For now, “people should eat a complete and well-balanced diet,” Battino said. “In this aspect fruit plays a pivotal role since, as it is well-known, it is recommended to consume five to nine fruit and vegetable portions a day, and among them strawberry should represent a valuable alternative.”