Here's a bit of good news you can enjoy with some red wine and chocolate. Based on a small study, resveratrol has shown some promise in treating Alzheimer's disease.
Alzheimer's disease is brain degeneration disease associated with the build-up of amyloid deposits. It is the most common type of dementia and affects 5 million people in the United States. The symptoms normally appear by the time the person reaches 65 years old, although in some cases, it is early onset.
Although Alzheimer's disease has been around for many years, the actual cause is still unknown, more so the treatment. Thus, the research plays a huge role.
The double-blind study was conducted by a team from Georgetown University. A phase 2 clinical trial, the research was participated by 119 men and women who have been diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease at different degrees. Their ages range from 50 to 90.
The group was then divided into two, with one acting as the placebo. Among those who took resveratrol, a popular compound found in grapes and chocolates, the average age was 70; it's 73 years old for the other.
The resveratrol group then received the purest form of resveratrol that a single dose is already equivalent to the amount found in more than 950 red wine bottles. According to the team, the large amount is important so the compound is immediately metabolized by the brain. For each day over the last 2 years, the participants had to consume 2 doses.
Upon analysis of the results, they learned that resveratrol affects the level of a certain protein in the brain known as amyloid-beta40 present in the cerebrospinal fluid. For a person with a progressive Alzheimer's disease, the protein's amount decreases and what takes place is deposit, which will later on cause the death of the brain's nerve cells. For the resveratrol group, the level hardly changes. This is in contrast to the placebo, who experienced a significant decline.
The team admits that this study requires more comprehensive research and follow-up and should not mean that people must start consuming large doses of resveratrol. However, the findings illustrate a new pathway to treatment.