Monday - Dec 09, 2019

Why Red Wine As Antioxidants Questioned in the Study?


woman drinking red-wine

Many people in the Western world believe  the French Paradox which points out that despite the high-saturated fat and high-cholesterol diet, there is a lower coronary heart disease incidence in the population.  People believe that drinking red wine regularly can help  prevent  illness.  They attribute it to the fact that red wine contains high levels of resveratrol and other polyphenols.

In a recent study  authored by Dr. Richard D. Semba and his team, from Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine pointed out whether resvetratol levels taken from the diet is linked with cardiovascular disease, cancer, inflammation and mortality in humans Resveratrol is a polyphenol found in red wine, grapes, certain types of berries and roots and chocolate.  It is believed to have various health benefits such as anti-cancer, anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. It is considered to be helpful in prolonging the lifespan particularly in lower forms of organisms.

How the Researchers Disprove the French Paradox?

The research team conducted a study to find out if such benefits indeed come from resveratrol. The team assessed a large number of Italians who take diet that are rich in this compound.  The results showed that they actually did not live longer and most likely they are prone to develop cancer and or cardiovascular diseases as compared with those individuals who take smaller amounts of resveratrol from their diet.

Dr. Semba stressed that the health benefits of resveratrol is not at all true.  Their findings have proven otherwise what people used to believe in for a long time. They noted that resveratrol consumed from the diet is not linked at all with cancer rates, longevity, cardiovascular disease or inflammatory markers.

The cohort study used data from 783 male and female participants ages 65 and above.  The participants were part of the Aging population from 1998 to 2009 in the two villages in the Chianti Region.  They were selected in the study to assess if revesratrol consumed from the diet can influence cardiovascular disease, cancer, inflammation and death.

They used mass spectrometry to measure these levels.  They analyzed a 24-hour urine sample and looked for the metabolites or breakdown products of resveratrol. The team conducted a nine years follow-up, and they recorded that among the participants, 34.3% died 27.2% had developed new form of cardiovascular disease and 4.6% had new cases or forms of cancer.

As a result, the data proved that resveratrol compound found in red wine is not associated with cancer, cardiovascular disease and inflammatory markers.  The team also noted that even they account for the other factors such as gender and age, those who had the highest concentration of resveratrol concentration were most likely to die from any cause as compared with those who does not have resveratrol metabolites in the urine.

Hence, the researchers conclude that they found no substantial evidence to linked revestratol to fight the diseases.  Despite their findings, other studies have proved that people can still get other health benefits from berries, wine and chocolates. According to the investigators, their study is the largest and first observational epidemiologic research that assessed the link between urinary resveratrol levels from the dietary consumption and possible health outcome in humans.

Why the Study is Unquestionable?

The team pointed out that the advantage of their research lies in the fact that they used a population-based sampling and or cohort study.  They also had strict criteria in assessing chronic diseases that affected the participants.  They also measured various inflammation biomarkers and they conducted higher follow-up rates that add credibility to their study’s strength and reliability.

The investigators also added that the community-dwelling men and women who participated in the study are not taking any resveratrol supplements.  According to the researchers, the resveratrol supplements have reached an annual sale of $30 million in the United States alone despite the fact that there is a conflicting and limited clinical data that demonstrated the metabolic benefits of using resveratrol in humans.

Even if the study had shown negative results, the team pointed out that consuming berries, dark chocolate and red wine have protective effects for the cardiovascular system and helps reduce inflammatory effects in some people.  What they are trying to point out is that the benefits if there is any, should come from the substances or polyphenols that are present in the foodstuff.   The findings of their study have shown that the benefit that one can get from eating these foods is not probably influenced by resveratrol.

There is also a recent study published last 2013, wherein the researchers at the University of Missouri School of Medicine have reported that resveratrol could actually help treat some form of cancer. Thus, further studies should focus on determining the various metabolites that can be found in these foods and how it can help treat different illness.  The thing is despite the negative outcome of this study, researchers have clearly pointed out that there could be other possible treatment where this compound is more effective.