A compound known as resveratrol found in red wine, grapes and other fruits has been acclaimed as a cure for various diseases and as a preventative against aging in several studies.
Now, a new study by the University of Florida has revealed that the polyphenol compound- an antibiotic substance produced by plants as a defense against microorganisms- may not prevent old age, but it might make it more tolerable.
"We're all looking for an anti-aging cure in a pill, but it doesn't exist. But what does exist shows promise of lessening many of the scourges and infirmities of old age," said UF exercise psychologist Heather Hausenblas, one of the study's researchers.
A comprehensive review of human clinical research on resveratrol has found it has 'anti-aging, anti-carcinogenic, anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties', but more research on its benefits is needed, she said.
The UF review shows that the resveratrol has considerable potential to improve health and prevent chronic disease in humans.
Exactly how resveratrol works isn't yet fully understood. Correlating factors such as metabolism, the chemical interplay of molecules, genetics, exercise, age, dosage, and many others all play a role.
Among resveratrol's most intriguing aspects is how it functions as an antioxidant.
The study appeared online this week in Molecular Nutrition and Food Research.