It is well known that drinking red wine is better for cardiovascular health. Now, a new study from researchers at the Universite Louis Pasteur de Strasbourg suggests that drinking certain types of grape juice can have the same protective effect against heart disease.
The researchers say that both red wine and certain grape juices contain high levels of antioxidative polyphenols, which blocks the production of a protein linked to cardiovascular disease.
The study was funded by Welch Foods Inc and published in the journal Cardiovascular Research. The French researchers used pig cells to examine the effect on the heart of Concord grape juice and found that polyphenols in Concord grape juice improve production of nitric oxide in endothelial cells, which promotes cardiovascular health.
"Grape juice can have a similar effect (against heart disease) as red wine but without the alcohol. That is a very important message," said Dr Valerie Schini-Kerth, lead author of the study. But the researcher added that the protective benefits were only linked to the grape juices with high levels of polyphenols.