Resveratrol is a phenol present in the grapes and the peanuts and is capable of increasing the longevity.Resveratrol is a naturally occurring phenol present in plants. It is a phytoalexin which is produced in plants at times of stress such as bacterial or, fungal infection. It is known that calorie restriction can increase longevity. Several studies in animals have shown that resveratrol has the ability to mimic this effect on longevity. High concentrations of resveratrol are seen in red and purple grapes. People in countries with high red wine consumption have increased longevity. Resveratrol is able to counter several diseases and naturally, a disease free body is able to live longer.
Countering free radicals
Free radicals are highly reactive species produced during the cellular metabolic reactions and are capable of producing damaging effects on the membranes and molecules like the DNA. Antioxidants are molecules capable of removing these free radicals. Superoxide dismutase is an enzyme present in the body which is capable of acting as an antioxidant. The activity of this enzyme is increased by resveratrol. Glutathione is a tri peptide occurring in the body and is also an antioxidant. The concentration of this compound is also increased by resveratrol. Thus, reveratrol can reduce the free radical damage to the tissues, thereby increasing longevity.
Resveratrol protects the heart in several ways. It lowers the blood cholesterol. It prevents the oxidation of LDL which is a damaging event. It also prevents the aggregation of platelets which is a clot promoting process. Resveratrol increases the synthesis of eNOS (endothelial nitric oxide synthase). This enzyme is responsible for the formation of nitric oxide which keeps the blood vessels flexible. This in turn promotes smooth flow of blood. It also keeps the aorta healthy and decreases arterial inflammation.
Dementia refers to a collection of neurodegenerative diseases. The Alzheimer’s disease is the best example. In this disease, protein amyloid plaques are formed which attack the neuronal synapses. This prevents inter neuronal connections. The onset of the Alzheimer’s disease is a terrifying event since it robs an individual of his memory. This is basically an outcome of ageing. Ageing leads to the hardening of the arteries, restricting the blood flow to the brain. Resveratrol increases the blood flow to the brain by increasing the synthesis of nitric oxide. It also increases mental alertness and motor coordination.