You must have heard and read a lot about how regular moderate intake of red wine is healthy for your heart. You may have even heard that it can increase your life span from anywhere between 10% to 50%! Did you ever spare a thought about how much of it held true? Or did you dismiss the thought as another rumour in the night; well, wine lovers may disagree! Let us dig a bit deeper into the story.
Resveratrol, a polyphenol found in red wine, is a protective antibiotic produced in plants under stress, like fungal disease or sun damage, and helps it fight back, thanks to its antioxidant properties. It is found abundantly in the skin of grapes, peanuts, berries, pistachios, etc.
Research, till now, has shown that resveratrol (may) have following beneficial effects:
- cancer suppression
- reduced Alzheimer risk (reduced brain plaque level)
- improved mental function (protects cell’s DNA)
How it works on heart? It supports heart by protecting the endothelial lining of the arteries from oxidative free radical damage. It also protects the production of nitric oxide by endothelium, critical to keep blood vessels optimally dilated, improving the blood flow. It is also said to reduce LDL (bad cholesterol) and formation of blood clots. People with bleeding disorders are not advised to take resveratrol.
Many resveratrol nutritional supplements have stormed the markets, mostly derived from Japanese knotweed plant, known to have highest concentration of resveratrol. These products have mostly been received with grand superstar like welcome.
It’s your choice! Though early research has shown positive trends, but whether you want to include resveratrol in your dietary regimen or not is largely up to your own acumen. Weigh your options, and more importantly, listen to your heart!
-Dr. Vikas Panwar