Grapes are good, juicy and full of sweetness. Whether green, red or purple, grapes are packed with ingredients highly beneficial to cure or prevent multiple health problems. Grapes contain multiple compounds that have active biological properties, like antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, anti-cancer, antimicrobial and, antiviral. Grapes have also been shown to strengthen the heart and the brain, and protect the liver. They are a rich source of valuable nutrients with remarkable positive effects on human health.
Studies have found that grape seed extracts may prevent the growth of stomach, breast, colon, prostate, and lung cancer cells in test tubes. Grapes contain natural chemicals that could have the potential to stop the spread of cancer cells.
In clinical studies, resveratrol, a natural compound found in grapes, has been shown to possess numerous biological activities, which could possibly be applied to the prevention and treatment of cancer. It has been found to inhibit the growth of cancer cells in culture and in some animal models.
Flavonoids, which are concentrated mainly in grape skins and seeds, are active anticancer constituents in grape products. Researchers have shown that grape skin extract possesses chemotherapeutic efficacy against breast cancer with metastases.
Good for the Heart
A study published in the Journal of Nutritional Biochemistry demonstrates that grapes are able to reduce heart failure associated with chronic high blood pressure by stimulating the activity of several genes responsible for antioxidant defense in the heart tissue. Grapes are a natural source of antioxidants and other polyphenols, which researchers believe to be responsible for the beneficial effects observed with grape consumption.
Eating flavonoid-rich grapes may have a significant beneficial effect on brain function and central nervous system. Grape flavonoids can prevent brain damage process by reducing inflammation and stress in brain cells. A clinical study demonstrated that 12 weeks supplementation with grape juice in the diet may have benefits on in adults with early memory decline.
Evidence suggests that polyphenols found in grapes may prevent the development of obesity and type 2 diabetes, by acting as regulators with antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects. Animal model study showed that, in addition to the currently known anti-inflammatory and antioxidant activities, grape seed extract can prevent weight gain and type 2 diabetes by improving both the digestion and the absorption of nutrients.
Protect the Liver
Environmental factors such as pollutants, alcohol, viral infections can promote the development of liver disease. Grape polyphenols have the ability to protect the liver because of their anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. Polyphenol-rich grape skin extract has been found to improve fatty-liver disease and to reduce diet-induced weight-gain.
Antiviral and Antimicrobial
Grapes contain numerous phenolic compounds that are active against human pathogens. Some studies, mostly in animals, have shown that grape seed extract helps to protect against bacterial infections, such as Staphylococcus. Catechins and Anthocyanins, two classes of antioxidants found in red grapes, have demonstrated anti-bacterial and anti-viral properties.
Grapes and grape products should be promoted in our daily diet not only as a nutrient, but as a healthy food as well. Currently, a growing number of researchers are focusing on the biological activities of grape as a prospective sources of valuable supplements.