Resveratrol is good for your brain; it improves blood vessel health
06/18/2018 // Michelle Simmons // Views

Resveratrol is beneficial in the dilation of blood vessels in the brain for people who have Type 2 diabetes, according to a study published in the Journal of Nutrition & Intermediary Metabolism.

Led by researchers from the University of Newcastle and Swinburne University of Technology in Australia, the study determined the optimum dosage of resveratrol needed to aid in improving vasodilator responses – that is, the widening of blood vessels – in the brain for patients with Type 2 diabetes mellitus. In particular, people who have Type 2 diabetes are known to have endothelial dysfunction and sub-clinical cognitive impairment.

The study built on the research team's previous foray into the subject, wherein they demonstrated that resveratrol is known to improve blood vessel function in the blood circulatory system. The research team hypothesized that resveratrol would also enhance cerebral circulation.

The study involved 36 individuals with Type 2 diabetes, with ages ranging from 40 to 80 years. The participants each received a single dose of synthetic trans-resveratrol in 75 mg, 150 mg, 300 mg, or placebo at weekly intervals. The research team used a Transcranial Doppler ultrasound to examine the participants' cerebral vasodilator responsiveness to a hypercapnic stimulus, such as breathing carbogen gas for three minutes, both before and 45 minutes after the resveratrol or placebo treatment. They measured the participants' cerebral vasodilator responsiveness in the left and right middle cerebral arteries.


The study results revealed that each resveratrol dose was effective in enhancing cerebral vasodilator responsiveness in people who are prone to have endothelial dysfunction and sub-clinical cognitive impairment, in comparison with the placebo. The greatest response was seen in the 75 mg dose of resveratrol, which is the lowest dosage among the treatments.

Resveratrol and its other health benefits

Resveratrol, a compound found in plants, acts as an antioxidant. It is found in different plants and plant products, such as grapes, red wine, grape juice, peanuts, cocoa, and berries such as blueberries, bilberries, and cranberries. In grapes, the compound is only found in the skins, and the concentrations of resveratrol in grape skins differ with the grape cultivar, its geographic origin, and exposure to fungal infection. Resveratrol is also available in supplements. (Related: Resveratrol is "Nature's Medicine" for Cancer, Heart Disease and Much More.)

Listed below are the other health benefits that resveratrol can provide.

  • Helps lower blood pressure – Resveratrol contains antioxidant properties that could potentially lower blood pressure. It may also help lower blood pressure by increasing the production of nitric oxide, which causes blood vessels to relax.
  • Benefits blood fats – Several animal studies suggested that resveratrol supplements may alter blood fats in a healthy way. As an antioxidant, they may also reduce LDL or bad cholesterol oxidation.
  • Protects the brain – Several studies suggested that drinking red wine, which contains resveratrol, can help slow down age-related cognitive decline. This protective effect may be attributed to its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory activities. In addition, resveratrol may protect brain cells from impairment.
  • Increases insulin sensitivity – According to animal studies, resveratrol provides several benefits for diabetes, such as increasing insulin sensitivity and preventing complications due to diabetes. The compound may also provide protection against oxidative stress, which causes some of the complications of diabetes. It may also help decrease inflammation, which is the main contributor to chronic diseases like diabetes, because of its anti-inflammatory effect. Resveratrol may also activate AMPK, a protein that helps the body break down glucose and regulate blood sugar levels.
  • Relieves joint pain – Resveratrol may help ease joint pain by preventing cartilage from breaking down, which is the cause of joint pain and one of the main symptoms of arthritis.
  • Restrains cancer cells – Based on animal and test tube studies, resveratrol exhibited exciting cancer-blocking activity.

If you'd like to read more news stories and studies on natural medicines, head over to today.

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