Some of the biggest buzz words in science, as well as the wellness world right now, are anti-aging, anti-inflammatory and antioxidant. Everyone is looking for ways to stay healthy and live longer. Enter Resveratrol. For years now, researchers have been studying resveratrol trying to find the exact mechanisms in which it may help promote a longer healthier life. Resveratrol belongs to a class of plant-derived chemicals known as polyphenols—which have been studied with growing interest due to their antioxidant and anti-aging properties. In plants, polyphenols are responsible for the vibrant colors and help to prevent against ultraviolet radiation, pathogens, oxidative damage and any harsh climate conditions.
Benefits of Resveratrol
- Strong antioxidant
- Promotes anti-aging effects on the body.
- Protects the cardiovascular system in the following ways:
- Improved health of blood vessels (endothelial lining)
- Improved circulatory system function
- Improved cholesterol/lipid profiles
- May protect heart muscle
- Improves nitric oxide availability
- Promotes anti-inflammatory mechanisms
- May protect the nerves against degenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s.
- May help offset effects of obesity and poor diet/lifestyle choices
- May have cancer-preventing benefits
- Can help improve blood flow to the brain
- May improve exercise endurance.
Where can you find resveratrol in foods?
- Peanuts, grapes, purple grape juice, red wine, Japanese knotweed and a variety of berries such as blueberries and cranberries are great sources of resveratrol.
How much resveratrol do you require?
- The standard dosage ranges from 250mg-500mg, but many researchers recommend anywhere between 100mg to 500mg per day. The best route to take is speaking with your health care provider to find the proper dosage for your body before starting any resveratrol supplements.
What’s in your supplements?
- When choosing a resveratrol supplement, it’s best to look for supplements that use whole grape skins. One of the best sources of resveratrol in nature and for supplementation are muscadine grapes, as they tend to have the highest concentration of resveratrol.
- Resveratrol comes in two forms, the cis form and the trans form, both of which refer to its chemical structure.
- The trans form is regarded as the more biologically active form. If possible look for supplements that list the percentage of trans resveratrol the label.
- The cis form is still active, but more research has been conducted on the trans form. As a result, we have not seen all of the benefits in the cis form that can be seen with the trans form.
- Many professionals believe that the purity level of trans-resveratrol should be around 98%.
- Look for products that explicitly say “resveratrol” on the label and not “red-wine complex” or proprietary formula. 300mg of resveratrol is not the same as 300mg of red wine complex.
- Try to avoid supplements with fillers and additives.
- Always read the ingredients label before purchasing any supplements!
Other Helpful Information
- Resveratrol may inhibit platelet aggregation, which means it may increase the risk of bleeding in individuals who are on anti-clotting medications.
- Although red wine is a good source of resveratrol, it is important to not drink large quantities as alcohol may have toxic effects on the body.
- It may be best to take your resveratrol supplements in the morning as they may be slightly more bioavailable vs. in the afternoon or evening.
- If you are pregnant or breastfeeding you should not take resveratrol as it has not been well studied as safe.
- Some supplements such as quercetin can work in conjunction with resveratrol and may boost its effectiveness.