A new study suggests that obese people can improve their health by drinking moderate amounts of red wine or red grape juice, as it helps in burning fat. Researchers of Oregon State University have unveiled that ellagic acid, a chemical present in red wine or red grape juice, helps in slowing down the growth of fat cells. It also retards the formation of new ones and enhances fatty acid metabolism in the liver. The study has been published in the Journal of Nutritional Biochemistry.
Obesity can be better managed by consuming dark colored grapes, either eating them directly or drinking juice or wine. It also helps to manage metabolic disorders such as fatty liver. When the lab grown human liver and fat cells were exposed to the extracts of natural chemicals found in Muscadine grapes, the growth of existing cells and formation of new cells retarded. Metabolism of fatty acids in liver cells also improved. Researchers suggest that such benefits owe to a particular chemical found in grapes called ellagic acid, which is an antioxidant and is also found in many other fruits and vegetables.
These benefits were also approved by a 10-week trial which was conducted by feeding the mice high-fat “mouse chow.” Half of the mice were also given extracts from Pinot noir grapes. Results showed that the chubby mice which received grape extracts accumulated less liver fat and had lower blood sugar as compared to those which consumed only fatty diet. However, the researchers have warned that red wine should not be used for miraculous weight loss. Researcher Neil Shay commented “We didn’t find, and we didn’t expect to, that these compounds would improve body weight. If we could develop a dietary strategy for reducing the harmful accumulation of fat in the liver, using common foods like grapes that would be good news.” The study was not aimed at replacing the need of medications. It is for guiding the people to choose foods which are common and widely available and have health benefits.