• Antioxidants;
  • Citrus juice;
  • Hypocaloric diet;
  • Obese children;
  • Oxidative stress


Aim:  To evaluate the effect of supplementing a hypocaloric diet with mandarin juice, a food with a high content of antioxidants (vitamin C, flavonoids and carotenoids), on biomarkers of oxidant/antioxidant status of severe obese children.

Methods:  Forty obese children were randomized into two groups pair-wise in a 4-week controlled intervention study. Both groups followed a hypocaloric diet. One group received additionally a supplementation of 500 mL of 100% mandarin juice daily. Clinical data, anthropometry, dietary intake and fasting blood samples were collected at baseline and after the intervention. Lipid peroxidation was assessed by circulating levels of malondialdehyde, and protein oxidation was determined by the concentration of plasma carbonyl groups. The antioxidant defence was evaluated by red cell-reduced glutathione and plasma levels of α-tocopherol and vitamin C.

Results:  The supplemented group experienced a decrease in the levels of malondialdehyde (−9.6%, p = 0.014) and carbonyl groups (−36.1%, p = 0.006) and an increase in antioxidants (α-tocopherol +16.1%, p = 0.006, glutathione +36.1%, p < 0.0001, and vitamin C + 94.6%, p < 0.0001).

Conclusion:  The mandarin juice consumption with a reduced calorie diet positively affects the antioxidant defence and produces a decrease in biomarkers of oxidative stress in obese children.