Resveratrol, Found in Red Wine, May Help Prevent Alzheimer’s Disease – Plus Ellagic Acid May Aid in Weight Loss
New evidence provided in a recent study done on the effect of resveratrol, a polyphenol compound and antioxidant present in red wine, dark colored grapes and dark chocolate has shown that the compound may impact the degree at which Alzheimer’s attacks the brain.
While the preliminary evidence is promising, the doses administered to patients were in pill form, at concentrations equal to the amount of 1,000 bottles of red wine. Also worth noting is that the study done was the first phase in a series of analyses.
The primary objective was to gauge the safety of using a concentrated resveratrol pill on human subjects – not necessarily its effectiveness at reversing or preventing the disease. However, despite the initial objective, improvements in maintaining high concentrations of AB40 (amyloid beta 40), a protein that declines in patients with Alzheimer’s, was noted. More evidence is needed to prove the lengths at which resveratrol may improve Alzheimer’s, and a second phase is slated to begin soon.
Drinking red wine has also been proven to dialate blood vessels and arteries, helping to lower blood pressure.
Red Wine May Have Other Health Benefits
Need another excuse to drink red wine? Despite the concentrated dose noted above, it doesn’t mean that one glass of red wine a day won’t help keep the doctor away. Other studies analyzing compounds in red wine have shown that it can contribute weight loss, heart health and even enhanced memory. The key, at least at this point, appears to be when red wine is consumed in moderation. Yes, polyphenols in full-bodied, rich red wines show promise for improved health, but at the same time excess amounts of alcohol can have an adverse effect. Let’s take a look at all of the major claims relating to red wine health benefits.
- Alzheimer’s Improvement, Prevention or Reversal
- Anti-Cancer Properties
- Anti-Aging Properties
- Reduced Cardiovascular Disease Risk
- Weight Loss
- Diabetes Prevention
- Reduced Heart Attack Risk
- Reduced Heart Disease Risk
- Lowers Blood Pressure
- Live a Longer Life
Numerous physicians involved with studying the health benefits of red wine, overtime, are seeing a trend with some of these claims appearing to be more common than not. While these health benefits are still tall claims, if proved true could it would be a huge revelation to our society as a whole.
However, in order to maximize these potential benefits, the individual should already be in good health and only drink in moderation. While evidence now seems to strongly point towards red wine health benefits, a glass of red should not be looked at as a cure-all. One glass MAY help attain some of the above health benefits, but only if you’re already eating a somewhat healthy diet, exercise frequently and drink, in moderation, highly concentrated full-bodied red wine. These include grapes like Red Cannonau (Grenache), Carignan and Malbec.
Ellagic Acid in Red Wine May Help You Lose Weight
Another recent study conducted by Oregon State University conducted a study on consumption of dark red grapes and its effect on obesity. But the benefit doesn’t appear to come from resveratrol, instead it comes from ellagic acid.
In the study, one group of mice were fed food containing up to 60% fat, while the others were fed basic mouse feed, which only contained 10%. During the 10 week study, the fatty-fed mice were found to have developed a fatty liver and preliminary symptoms of diabetes. Which, as the study notes, is similar to what would happen to an overweight human. This is where the study gets interesting.
The fatty-fed mice were then given the equivalent of about one and a half cups of grapes per day. Overtime, “chubby mice that got the extracts accumulated less fat in their livers, and they had lower blood sugar, than those that consumed the high-fat diet alone. Ellagic acid proved to be a powerhouse in this experiment, too, lowering the high-fat-fed mice’s blood sugar to nearly the levels of the lean, normally fed mice,” says OSU biochemist Neil Shay.
The results here prove promising, and reasonable. Considering the amount of grapes needed for the liver cells to respond to ellagic acid.
There are numerous claims that red wine can provide health benefits that range from anti-aging properties, to weight loss and even improved memory. However, despite the number of studies, we want to stress that the investigation is ongoing and more complete scientific research and resulting evidence is needed to confirm the claims. We’ll keep you updated as more studies are churned out.