In the past, researchers have lauded resveratrol–the antioxidant powerhouse found in grapes and wine–as a cancer fighter and an exercise enhancer.
As it turns out, this may not necessarily be true anymore, thanks to new evidence from Canada’s Queen’s University.
New findings discovered by researchers say that those who took resveratrol supplements did not experience an increase in SOD2 gene expression–something researchers say protects the heart during exercise.
“The results we saw suggest that concurrent exercise training and resveratrol supplementation may alter the body’s normal training response induced by low-volume high-intensity interval training,” says Brendon Gurd, a lead researcher from the School of Kinesiology and Health Studies at Queen’s University. “The data set we recorded during this study clearly demonstrates that resveratrol supplementation doesn’t augment training, but may impair the effect it has on the body.”
What Researchers Discovered
In years past, resveratrol has been hailed as a miracle supplement–treating conditions ranging from acne to cancer.
However, when it comes to its effects on exercise, researchers say it could actually be harmful.
Researchers initially made these findings after recruiting 16 men who were already physically active.
“The present study examined the effect of concurrent exercise training and daily resveratrol (RSV) supplementation (150 mg) on training-induced adaptations following low-dose high-intensity interval training (HIIT),” say researchers. “Sixteen recreationally active (~22 years, ~51 mL·kg-1·min-1) men were randomly assigned in a double-blind fashion to either the RSV or placebo group with both groups performing 4 weeks of HIIT 3 days per week.”
Although the men were already physically active, researchers increased their exercise workload–and then required them to consume either a placebo or a resveratrol supplement for the next 4 weeks.
By the end of the experiment, researchers evaluated how each supplement affected their body–and the results weren’t good. Those on a placebo experienced an increase in SOD2 gene expression, an effect associated with a greater increase in heart protection during exercise. But for those who took the resveratrol supplement, this effect simply didn’t occur.
In essence, resveratrol was canceling out the effects of regular exercise.
“These results suggest that concurrent exercise training and RSV supplementation may alter the normal training response induced by low-volume HIIT,” say researchers. “[Our] findings question whether resveratrol is effective as an exercise-enhancing supplement and further research into the association is warranted.”
Bottom line? Drop the resveratrol if you exercise–it does more harm than good.
What You Should Do
Trying to get fit? Forget resveratrol–it can actually prevent you from getting all of the heart-healthy benefits of exercise. Instead, try taking a supplement instead shown to improve exercise endurance, such as caffeine or whey protein.
Readers: Have you used resveratrol before? If so, what have you used it for?
Resveratrol Supplements ‘May Impair Body’s Response to Exercise,’ Says Study – MedicalNewsToday.com
Resveratrol Supplementation Does Not Augment Performance Adaptations or Fiber-Type-Specific Responses to High-Intensity Interval Training in Humans – NRCResearchPress.com