Red wine not only complements meal but is also known to protecting heart and prolonging life. Now add one more benefit to the list -- a glass of the drink daily can help you stay young.
Researchers have found that resveratrol, a compound present in the skin of red grapes used to make wine, curbs the effects of ageing. The natural compound is already known to having anti-cancer as well as anti-inflammatory properties.
"Resveratrol is active in much lower doses than previously thought and mimics a significant fraction of the profile of calorific restriction at gene expression level," lead researcher Tomas Prolla was quoted by the Daily Mail.
Their finding is based on a study on laboratory mice. They investigated the influence of resveratrol by looking for changes in gene expression, or activity, in heart, muscle and brain tissues in the rodents.
As the animals age, gene activity in different parts of their bodies change as genes are switched on and off.
In the mice heart, there are at least 1,029 genes whose functions alter with age, leading to impaired function. When the rodents are fed a restricted diet, 90 per cent of this age-related change is prevented, the study found.
The study also revealed that low doses of resveratrol blocked harmful changes in 92 per cent of the heart genes. At the same time, declines in heart function associated with ageing were also prevented.
A glass of red wine, or food supplements containing even small doses of resveratrol, were likely to represent a "robust intervention in the retardation of cardiac ageing, according to the researchers at Wisconsin-Madison University.
"There must be a few master biochemical pathways activated in response to caloric restriction, which in turn activate many other pathways. And resveratrol seems to activate some of these master pathways as well," Prolla said.
The results of the study have been published in the latest edition of the PLoS ONE journal.