Resveratrol supplements 'could cancel out exercise benefits'

It has been touted as a 'miracle antioxidant' with health-boosting properties, but new research suggests taking resveratrol supplements could actually undo all your fitness hard work.

Resveratrol could negate exercise benefits

Pic: AFP/Getty Images

According to a report published in the Journal of Physiology, resveratrol - which naturally occurs in the skins of red wine grapes - actually cancelled out many of the benefits of exercise, such as lowering blood pressure and 'bad' cholesterol levels.

A number of previous studies - mostly involving mice or rats - have credited resveratrol with mopping up free radicals that attack cells and tissues, and can cause a variety of health problems.

But the Danish researchers behind this latest study claim these free radicals may actually aid the body in recovery after exercise, and that with them, benefits such as lower blood pressure and increased oxygen uptake may be undone.

The study took 28 men in their mid-60s, each of whom embarked on an eight-week, high-intensity exercise regime. Half the group were given a 250mg dose of resveratrol each day, while the remainder received a placebo.

Tests at the end of the eight weeks revealed that most of the positive effects of the training programme vanished in those who were taking the supplement. Though further research is required, the scientists expect that tests on younger men and women will garner the same results.

However, those who enjoy the odd glass of red needn't worry that their exercise regime might be fruitless, as the supplements were of a much larger dose than is present in wine.

Have you tried resveratrol? Have you noticed any health benefits from taking the supplement? Leave your comments below...