Resveratrol’s heart health benefits pinpointed?
Resveratrol – een stof in rode wijn - may be influencing both blood vessel function and the function of fat cells, say new studies which may help explain its heart health benefits.
(resveratrol is ook als supplement verkrijgbaar, o.a. als extract uit het kruid polygonum cuspidatum (Japanese Knotweed root)).
Two studies published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition report that red wine appears to have a direct effect on the health of the cells lining blood vessels, while resveratrol may also influence the function of fat cells, and reduce the risk of developing conditions related to obesity.
The results were welcomed by Evi Mercken and Rafael de Cabo from the National Institute on Aging at the National Institutes of Health. In an accompanying editorial in the AJCN, the NIH scientists said “the potential effect of resveratrol in preventive medicine and treatment of metabolic diseases cannot be overlooked”. They called for well-designed human trials to further explore the potential benefits of red wine and resveratrol.
The promise of long life
Resveratrol, a powerful polyphenol and anti-fungal chemical, is often touted as the bioactive compound in grapes and red wine, and has particularly been associated with the so-called 'French Paradox'. The phrase, coined in 1992 by Dr Serge Renaud from Bordeaux University, describes the low incidence of heart disease and obesity among the French, despite their relatively high-fat diet and levels of wine consumption.
Interest in the compound exploded in 2003 when research from David Sinclair and his team from Harvard reported that resveratrol was able to increase the lifespan of yeast cells. The research, published in Nature, was greeted with international media fanfare and ignited flames of hope for an anti-ageing pill.
According to Sinclair’s findings, resveratrol could activate a gene called sirtuin1 (Sirt1 – the yeast equivalent was Sir2), which is also activated during calorie restriction in various species, including monkeys.
Since then studies in nematode worms, fruit flies, fish, and mice have linked resveratrol to longer lives. Other studies with only resveratrol have reported anti-cancer effects, anti-inflammatory effects, cardiovascular benefits, anti-diabetes potential, energy endurance enhancement, and protection against Alzheimer’s.
Resveratrol and fat mass .............
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