New research has identified a potential link between fresh grapes and brain health, and the compound responsible is resveratrol.
Preliminary research has revealed that resveratrol may be beneficial in protecting against neurological diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s as discussed below.
- Resveratrol added to drinking water protected young adult rats against brain damage caused by a powerful neurotoxin, kainic acid, which leads researchers to believe that resveratrol has the potential to protect against both acute and chronic neurological diseases.1
- Resveratrol was potent and effective in inhibiting the formation of fibrils, tiny abnormal structures around nerves that are a hallmark of Alzheimer’s disease and other degenerative nerve diseases. In Alzheimer’s disease, fibrils deposit on the nerves and form plaques in the brain.2
- Resveratrol protected Parkinson’s-like nerve cells against iron-enhanced oxidative damage. This is encouraging because in Parkinson’s disease areas around the nerves become abnormally enriched with iron. This in turn makes the nerves more susceptible to oxidative damage.3
- California Table Grape Commission (1. M. Virgili and A. Contestabile (2000) Neurosci. Lett. 281(2-3), 123-126.;
- T. Klabunde et al. (2000) Nat. Struct. Biol. 7(4), 312-321.;
- D. Frankel and H.M. Schipper (1999) Exp. Neurol. 160(2), 376-385.