The latest anti-aging weapon is not an injection or a wonder cream, and it doesn’t involve any nipping or tucking either.
A recent study from The Journals of Gerontology revealed that resveratrol, a compound found in the skin of red grapes and in red wine, shares many of the same benefits as a drug prescribed to fight Type 2 diabetes called metformin.
Specifically, both resveratrol and metformin have many of the same neuroprotective benefits that come from a low-calorie diet and exercise. Additionally, study researchers found that the wine component, resveratrol, also preserves muscle fibers during aging.
To test the effect of resveratrol, researchers treated older mice with the compound for one year and studied their movements. Just as the optimum diet and exercise can improve muscle preservation and aging effects, Valdez found that resveratrol has similar benefits in the test mice.
So the latest anti-aging weapon appears to be: a glass of red wine a day for women and two for men.
What is it about wine that can help us age and look better?
The mechanism is the antioxidants in red wine. Antioxidants sop up damaging free radicals that play a role in aging and age-related diseases. There is a much higher concentration of antioxidants called polyphenols, including resveratrol, in wine compared to grape juice. In wine, the skin and seeds are part of the fermenting process, but both are removed when making grape juice.
Stress relief may also be another factor. . It is difficult to sort out how much of the benefits are from the chemical properties of wine vs. the types of behaviors that wine drinkers tend to have such as less stress in their lives. Wine is part of the Mediterranean diet, which is also rich in fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains, nuts and seeds, legumes, seafood, yogurt, and olive oil. This diet is more of a lifestyle that includes drinking wine with dinner. Studies show that the Mediterranean diet is associated with longer, healthier lives.
Drinking a glass of red wine a day is the single most important thing that you can do other than nonsmoking, from an anti-aging point of view, but you can have too much of a good thing. Drinking more than recommended can have the opposite effect on your appearance and health.
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What is your wine prescription?
A glass a day and your skin will glow. As antiaging advice, this is as good as it gets. Anything more than the recommended dose and you will be doing more harm than good.
What specific benefits can a person expect if they drink a glass of red wine a day?
You will look better, your skin will glow, and you will live five years longer than a teetotaler. There are also good studies that show people who drink red wine on a regular basis have fewer actinic keratoses (precancerous skin lesions). You will have a significantly lower risk of Alzheimer’s disease, cancer, diabetes, and all of the things that go along with aging. People assume that drinking would decrease brainpower as you get old, but the most amazing thing is that regular wine drinkers have an 80% lower risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease.
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What about people who can’t consume alcohol?
People who can’t drink wine should such look to other whole foods with polyphenols and antioxidants, like pomegranates and blueberries. Or go for dark chocolate. It does a lot of the same things as wine. Both dark chocolate and red wine have been shown to protect the skin from sun damage.
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What about skin creams with resveratrol?
This is actually the next big thing in skin care. In fact, the concentration of resveratrol delivered to the skin is much higher when you use a resveratrol-enriched cream than if you consume red wine in a glass. Patients who have used Gold Mulberry report brightening and rejuvenation effects.
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Does it matter if the wine is red or white?
White wines do not have as many antioxidants as red wines. In terms of reds, it has more to do with the way the grapes are grown than the varieties of wine. Oregon pinot noirs tend to have higher levels of polyphenols and European wines tend to have more polyphenols than American wines, in general.
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