Anthocyanins, a flavonoid class of polyphenols, are water soluble dark colored natural pigments found in fruits and vegetables. Owing to their wide distribution in plant materials, dietary consumption of anthocyanins is high compared to other flavonoids. Anthocyanins, due to their multifaceted medicinal properties are the active components in many herbal folk medicines. As in vitro and in vivo results, animal models, and clinical trials in various cell lines suggest, anthocyanins possess antioxidant, antidiabetic, antihyperlipidemic, anti-inflammatory, anticarcinogenic, antiulcer, and preventive activities against cardiovascular diseases. Additionally, anthocyanins exhibit chemotherapeutic, cardioprotective, hepatoprotective, and neuroprotective activities. In the diet, anthocyanins are absorbed in the stomach and intestinal cells and rapidly detected in the plasma. These promising properties of anthocyanins may well provide health benefits against chronic diseases.

Keywords: Anthocyanins, multitarget therapeutic agents, antioxidant, antidiabetic, antihyperlipidemic, anti-inflammatory and anticarcinogenic activity.

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