Red wine in many ways can be considered a food cure. In moderation only, of course. But the natural antioxidants in the elegant beverage can certainly do wonders in our bodies. The heavyweight here is resveratrol, which is the focus of a new and intriguing piece of health news. Alzheimer’s disease prevention, anyone?
A national clinical trial examining the effects of resveratrol on people with mild to moderate Alzheimer’s disease is now underway. So this story isn’t about results; it’s about the amazing possibilities. More than 24 different academic institutions will start recruiting volunteers in the coming months for this groundbreaking study.
Resveratrol is found in red grapes, red grape juice, red wine, chocolate, tomatoes, and peanuts. Some studies suggest that resveratrol may prevent diabetes, act as a natural cancer fighter, ward off heart disease, and prevent memory loss. But, as of yet, there is large, definitive study of its effects in humans.
The risk of all of these diseases increases with aging. Animal studies suggest that resveratrol may impede molecular mechanisms of aging. Human population studies suggest several health benefits from modest daily consumption of red wine — though we don’t yet know how they work.
The truth is that most resveratrol studies showing any health benefits have been conducted in animal models, such as mice. With the new study, we’ll find out if daily doses of pure resveratrol could delay or alter memory deterioration and daily functioning in people with Alzheimer’s. They may also find out if resveratrol improves glucose and insulin metabolism in older individuals.
It should be noted that resveratrol is not approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for the treatment of Alzheimer’s. It is not known if resveratrol can change the course of the disease.
The study will test resveratrol against placebo and no patients or staff members will know who has which pill. This is called “double-blind” and placebo-controlled. It will help ensure a reliable result, the gold standard for clinical studies. It could have the making of a huge breakthrough.
More than 5.3 million people in the U.S.have Alzheimer’s and, every 70 seconds, another person develops this disease. The resveratrol study will be conducted at 26 U.S. academic institutions that are affiliated with the Alzheimer’s Disease Cooperative Study. The participants will be asked to abstain from eating or drinking large quantities of foods or beverages that contain resveratrol,
and abstain from taking dietary supplements containing resveratrol.
The study will last 12 months. Watch in one year’s time for what could be some of the biggest results about red wine ever recorded.