Head for the red to beat the bulge
An antioxidant called resveratrol, which is common in red wine, has been shown by a team of Sydney University researchers to produce striking health improvements in mice which have been fed a fatty diet.
The study, which was undertaken by international team of researchers including Dr Hamish Jamieson and Professor David Le Couteur from the University's Centre for Education and Research in Ageing and ANZAC Research Institute, is the first to show the antioxidant's benefits in mammals.
Published in the most recent issue of the international journal Nature, the study compared three groups of mice, one on a standard diet, another on a high calorie diet (60 per cent fat) and the third on the same diet supplemented with resveratrol.
The team found that the compound lengthened the lifespan of the mice on the high fat diet almost to the same as animals on the standard diet, thus reducing their risk of death to by 31 per cent compared with obese mice which were not fed the supplement.
Within mice models, after six months the compound was shown to override the effects of the high calorie diet, preventing obesity related problems such as insulin insensitivity, high glucose levels and unhealthy heart and liver.
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