Whatever happened to Resveratrol, the supposedly magical compound found in grape skins and red wine?
For a while it was big news and even linked to the “French Paradox”, a way to describe how wine-loving Parisians can enjoy a rich and boozy diet with a relatively low incidence of coronary disease. Now, it seems to have fallen off the radar.
The problem is that while moderate alcohol consumption has been linked to a reduction in coronary disease, that link has not been firmly made with Resveratrol and red wine. Further, it has yet to be established that the compound prevents or reduces cancer growth in humans, although it has been proven to do so in some animal testing.
Rumors abounded as late as early 2011 that Resveratrol may even be a type of Fountain of Youth due to some animal studies that revealed possible anti-aging properties; however, all that came to a halt with the end of clinical trials that bore no significant results. Even so, GlaxoSmithKline, which bought the company who developed the science in 2008, hopes that future studies will yield more favorable results.
A review of past studies reveal there is good reason to believe Resveratrol can act to ease problems associated with aging like inflammation and the effects of carcinogens, although more tests are needed to understand the benefits.
Meanwhile, Resveratrol supplements are available for consumers and the studies have not indicated any notable negative effects in people who use it, suggesting that a “better safe than sorry” approach may not be a bad way to go.
Of course, I should remind everyone that our blog entries are for your information only and are not intended as medical advice. Because everyone is different, you should work with your medical professional to determine what’s best for you. If you’re going to drink, do it legally and responsibly; don’t be stupid =).