Thanks to the rich content of antioxidants, grapes are an ideal food to maintain healthy cells and thus prevent many diseases.
Grapes are rich in B-group vitamins (except vitamin B12), which are essential for maintaining a healthy psycho-physical condition. If we are lacking this group of vitamins, we can feel fear, we become depressed, we feel apathy, and we are anxious and confused. So consumption of B-vitamins greatly improves the mood.
How do antioxidants work?
Grapes are full of antioxidants, such as resveratrol, which protect cells from oxidative stress and potentially reduce the risk of developing cancer. When antioxidants come in contact with free radicals they react with them in order to stop them from causing damage to the cells – in a way they “sacrifice” for the health of cells.
Free radicals are constantly produced by the body, but their production is higher under the influence of environmental factors such as heat, air pollution, ionizing radiation, alcohol, smoking, stress and aging. Their characteristic is that they are very unstable and quickly reacts with the molecules. When they react with the cells (if previously not in contact with anti-oxidants), they damage them and this can cause various diseases such as atherosclerosis and cancer.
Antioxidants in grapes
Gallic acid found in the grapes is a powerful antioxidant that works against viruses and bacteria. It can be efficient in the prevention of prostate cancer.
Next antioxidant found in grapes is vitamin C, which is the basis for a healthy and functioning immune system; its anti-inflammatory effect maintains healthy tooth enamel, capillaries, tissue and bone. It can help reduce the risk of cancer.
Polyphenols that are found in grapes are among the most prevalent antioxidants. Due to its anti-oxidant activity is very likely they help delay development of cancer and atherosclerosis.
Flavonoids inhibit the growth of bacteria and reduce blood cholesterol, help prevent atherosclerosis, defects of DNA and gum disease and tooth decay.
Also, anthocyanins are antioxidants that prevent cell damage due to free radicals. In addition, they are extremely beneficial for the cardiovascular system and reduce the risk of certain cancers. They can also help to lose weight.
Grapes can treat metabolic syndrome
According to some studies, grapes could also reduce the risk of developing metabolic syndrome. This is the collective name for a number of conditions that occur at the same time. These include: high blood sugar, high blood pressure, obesity, lack of good (HDL) cholesterol, excess of triglycerides in the blood. Metabolic syndrome is highly increased risk for cardiovascular disease, stroke and type 2 diabetes.
Studies conducted on rats showed that after three months of diet rich in grapes, the rats had reduced inflammatory symptoms in the body – particularly those in the adipose tissue around the abdomen and liver. They also measured less fat in the liver, stomach and kidney.