Research points to the antioxidant resveratrol as the key ingredient in red wine. Some claim that resveratrol, which occurs in small doses in red wine, can protect against heart disease, diabetes, and Alzheimer’s disease. However, pure resveratrol is ineffective; it’s broken down too quickly by the liver to be of any use. For example, you’d have to drink 1,000 bottles of wine each day to get the necessary resveratrol to effectively fight Alzheimer’s.
Researchers understand that there is something in wine’s other compounds that makes the substance more effective (yeah, alcohol!), but instead they are trying to circumvent the issue. At Jupiter Orphan Therapeutics Inc, a Floridian biotech company, a formula for resveratrol that isn’t broken down by the liver is in the works. The company’s goal is simple: “Mimic the synergistic effect that is found in a glass of red wine without the negative effects of alcohol.”
Resveratrol is also found in blueberries and dark chocolate (other foods high in antioxidants), but researchers are still no closer to making the magic pill — with or without other compounds from wine — that could effectively aid your health in the same way as red wine. So, there’s just one thing left to do: drink!