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The relative contributions of vitamin C, carotenoids and phenolics to the antioxidant potential of fruit juices

The health benefit of fruit juices have been ascribed, in part, to phenolic antioxidants. The antioxidant potential of a range of fruit juices was assessed by measurement of their ability to reduce a synthetic free radical, potassium nitrosodisulphonate, and also by their ability to reduce Fe(III). Vitamin C was found to account for 65-100% of the antioxidant potential of beverages derived from citrus fruit but less than 5% of apple and pineapple juice. The contribution of carotenoids to antioxidant potential was negligible. Although phenolics appear to be major contributors to the antioxidant potential of the non-citrus juices, their identity and bio-availability requires further investigation.