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Are Red Wine and Chocolate Really Helpful

Posted 5/13/2014

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  This is one truly depressing study. You might want to pour yourself a glass of red wine and break off a hunk of dark chocolate before reading it. Could it really be that the compound in them isn't helpful after all?

  First a reminder that this is a single study from Johns Hopkins, reported in JAMA. It is, however, a well-done study that contradicts all the others about the potential benefits of resveratrol, the "good for you" compound found in various foods. Without further ado, here is the report from Reuters:

Wine compound not tied to improved health: study
By Andrew M. Seaman

NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - A compound found in wine and
chocolate may not be linked to improved health as was once claimed,
according to a new study.
The compound resveratrol was not associated with less inflammation,
cardiovascular disease or cancer or with increased longevity among a
group of elderly Italians, researchers found.
“This is contradictory to all the hype that we typically hear from the
popular arena,” said Dr. Richard Semba, the study’s lead author from the
Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine in Baltimore, Maryland.
Past studies had found that resveratrol, a compound naturally present in
certain fruits and vegetables, has properties that may benefit people’s health, Semba and his colleagues write in JAMA Internal Medicine.
But there was little evidence on the compound’s effect on a large population, they add.


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