Resveratrol
A Little Madiera, My Dear?

Resveratrol probably isn't the first word out of our mouth when someone asks us to name a favorite nutrient or supplement but maybe it should be, well except for turmeric.  

It is an incredible antioxidant as are most of the polyphenols and it has tremendous implications for cardiovascular health, cancer and neurodegenerative disease.  

While red wine has a reputation for being rich in resveratrol, there is actually very little of this flavonoid in the wine itself.  That is because the skin of the grapes is where it resides and we wouldn't want grape skins floating around in our wine glass.   

There is a about 1 mg in a glass of red wine compared to 160 mg of "Red Wine Polyphenol Extract" in a typical supplement capsule as found in Walgreen's Finest brand supplement.  That's just an example, not an endorsement.

An interesting thing about supplements is that most manufacturers don't use grapes at all, their product mostly comes from Japanese Knotweed.  Why waste good wine grapes on a supplement when they can get the nutrient from a weed that is probably a lot cheaper and easier to grow?

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None other than the Mayo Clinic has discussed the polyphenol and red wine in the context of heart disease.

The Mayo Clinic article says that "resveratrol might be a key ingredient in red wine that helps prevent damage to blood vessels, reduces bad (LDL) cholesterol and prevents blood clots". 

The article also says that it "could be linked to a reduced risk of inflammation and blood clotting both of which can lead to heart disease".

The Mayo article is interesting but nothing is definite since they use weasel words like, "might", "could be", "there is no evidence" and similar verbiage.  So run the tests already and give us some useful information.

Dr. Oz in his book "You: The Owner’s Manual” takes it a bit further saying that it "seems" to decrease aging of DNA in mitochondria. 

Recall that mitochondria are the cells power plant and also play a part in cellular signaling, differentiation of cells, and cell growth and death.  He also claims that the flavonoids help reduce aging of arteries and the immune system.

YOU: The Owner's Manual: An Insider's Guide to the Body That Will Make You Healthier and Younger

It seems that fruit and vegetables can be protected from aging as well as systems in our body.   As reported back on January 1, 2003 in the Journal of Agriculture and Food Chemistry, apples dipped in a solution of trans-resveratrol from red grapes extended their shelf life from two weeks to three months. 

The grapes themselves experienced a doubled shelf life after being treated with the same solution.   It worked on vegetables like tomatoes, green peppers and avocados as well.


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As far as supplementing this particular flavonoid, it is best to take it with a little alcohol since without the alcohol, not much of the flavonoid will be absorbed.  Thus taking a red wine extract supplement with a little red wine seems to be the ideal way to consume this great antioxidant. 

However, if one can't handle the wine, then there's always the option of eating a bunch of red grapes every so often or even peanuts, cranberries or blueberries.

At last check there were 276 books titles on this amazing product of the grape at Amazon.com but the top two titles are:

Resveratrol: Unleashing the Benefits of Red Wine

The Longevity Factor: How Resveratrol and Red Wine Activate Genes for a Longer and Healthier Life

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