For anyone who loves to relax at the end of a long day with a glass of mellow merlot or a precocious port instead of hightailing it over to the gym, this new study may be one to get excited about.
According to ABCNews.com, a small Dutch study reported in the November 2, 2011 issue of Cell Metabolism journal that they found the red wine ingredient resveratrol lowered blood pressure as well as blood glucose levels and liver fat in obese men after 30 days.
Though the red wine didn’t cause any weight loss, the subjects seemed to be metabolically healthier, commented study author Patrick Schrauwen of Maastricht University in the Netherlands. The resveratrol mimicked the effects of diet and exercise during the short study.
The resveratrol, found in the grape skins, dark chocolate, and peanuts, has been reported in the past to have other health benefits. In 2006, a Harvard University study in mice found that resveratrol increased the lifespan and “healthspan” in obese mice.
The study suggested broader implications for the treatment of diseases like diabetes and heart disease, and encouraged some to enjoy a daily glass of red wine.
Researchers did stress that this study, though exciting, was not a license to eat in unhealthy ways or forego exercise. They think resveratrol should be used as a supplement to a healthy and active lifestyle. While it could help obese people have a health “safety net”, it could also placate them into continuing a sedentary and unhealthy lifestyle.
In the ABCNews.com article, Keith Ayoob, director of the Rose R. Kennedy Center Nutrition Clinic at Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York City is quoted as saying that this study could be good news, "but I'd be concerned that it might make people be more tolerant of their obesity, since they'd be able to mitigate some of the metabolic complications of being overweight."