fruits and vegetables
enter the body
Cell death is selectively induced
in these cells
They are metabolized by CYP1B1 enzymes in malfunctioning cells
The Discovery of Salvestrols
The scientists in the UK who discovered Salvestrols — led by Gerry Potter (Professor of Medicinal Chemistry) and Dan Burke (Emeritus Professor of Pharmaceutical Metabolism and former head of the School of Pharmacy) — were developing synthetic pharmaceutical products that use this method to combat disease, when they realized that similarly structured compounds were naturally present in many foods.
These researchers were surprised to learn that foods which should have been rich in these essential compounds actually showed low concentrations or were devoid of them. They soon realized that this wasn't because the plants couldn't produce these compounds; modern food selection and production methods were removing them from the diet.
The Effects of Food Processing
One reason for the disappearance of Salvestrols in the diet is that that they have a bitter taste. As a result of the modern trend toward sweet flavors, plant sources that would normally be rich in Salvestrols are shunned as sweeter tasting varieties are bred or selected to suit modern tastes. The trend towards producing foods without adding sugars or sweeteners is also causing Salvestrols to be removed by manufacturing processes that filter out bitter substances so that the finished product will taste sweeter.
The most exciting discovery was the fact which led the scientists to unravel the true mysteries of Salvestrols: these substances are produced by plants to protect themselves from pests and disease. However, the use of many modern fungicides and crop protection chemicals means that plants which are not organically grown do not express high concentrations of Salvestrols because they are not exposed to the attacks that cause them to be produced at such levels! About 100 years ago, before the advent of such crop enhancing methods, we would have consumed a lot more Salvestrols naturally.