Now scientists are warning middle-aged men (men in their sixties actually) that the anti-oxidant compound appears to block the benefits of exercise.
Previously the chemical resveratrol, found in red grapes and diet supplements, had been linked to anti-ageing properties.
Sports scientists at Copenhagen University discovered to their surprise that resveratrol supplements blunted the positive effects of exercise for cardio-vascular health.
Anti-oxidants fight unstable molecules in our bodies (free radicals) which have been linked to cancer and heart disease. Exercise actually increases free radicals but the stress of that plays a part in burning fat, building muscle, and increasing sensitivity to insulin. We know that some stress is good for the body and keeps our immune system on alert. Scientists now wonder if high doses of anti-oxidants interfere with the natural and beneficial responses to exercise.
The research followed about 30 healthy but physically inactive 65-year old men for 8 weeks. They were asked to perform high-intensity exercise training and given either a resveratrol supplement or a placebo. The scientist found that while the exercise was effective in improving cardio-vascular health the supplement interfered with its impact on blood pressure and other factors.
The study was published in the Journal of Physiology and reported in the Times
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