Myths about Red Wine Uncorked!
Red wine has been claimed to be beneficial to humans because of a component called 'Resveratrol'. There have been no studies that show its benefits to humans. All studies have been conducted on mice, insects and yeasts.
Mice are not men. Apart from this logic, all the studies have been conducted using very high concentrations of Resveratrol (2,000-4,000 mg per litre).
The problem with all this is that Resveratrol has very poor bioavailability in humans. It is also very INSOLUBLE in water.
Taking advantage of the hype, companies are selling Resveratrol "supplements" as tablets.
The drug does not reach the proposed sites of action, in vivo, after oral ingestion, especially in humans. We examined the absorption, bioavailability, and metabolism of 14C-resveratrol after oral and i.v. doses in six human volunteers. The absorption of a dietary relevant 25-mg oral dose was at least 70%, with peak plasma levels of resveratrol and metabolites of 491ng/ml (about 2 mM) and a plasma half-life of 9.2 hr. However, only trace amounts of unchanged resveratrol (<5ng/ml) could be detected in plasma. Most of the oral dose was recovered in urine. Liquid chromatography/mass spectrometry analysis identified three metabolic pathways, i.e.,sulfate and glucuronic acid conjugation of the phenolic groups and, interestingly, hydrogenation of the aliphatic double bond, the latter likely produced by the intestinal microflora.
In other words, if you drank four glasses of red wine, you would still have consumed 200 times less Resveratrol than used in the studies (on mice!)- and you would then pee and poop most of it out.
The white elephant in the room, never discussed, is the negative effects of the alcohol in the wine. I will deal with this in a separate post. If the Resveratrol cannot be absorbed by humans even after copious consumption of red wine- and the alcohol had negative consequences- how good is red wine for you?