Red wine may protect brain against stroke damage

Last Updated: Sunday, April 25, 2010 - 00:00

London: Red wine bolsters the brain`s defences against the damage caused by stroke, say scientists.

Experts say that while alcohol can protect against one kind of stroke, even small amounts may raise the risk of the other.

“We know that small amounts of alcohol seem to help protect against ischaemic strokes, which is a clot in the brain. Alcohol may help to thin the blood and reduce the risk of clots forming. We recommend that people drink alcohol in moderation,” quoted a scientist as saying.

The research, from the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine in Baltimore, suggests that resveratrol increases levels of a protective enzyme called heme oxygenase.

When the stroke hits, the enzyme swings into action, shielding oxygen-starved cells from death.

A `wonder ingredient` in the wine already credited with powers ranging from extending life to burning off junk food - can minimise the harm done by a blood clot in the brain, claim the researchers.

Researcher Sylvain Doré believes that even small amounts of resveratrol, which is also found in raspberries, blueberries, cranberries and peanuts, could be protective.

But until other studies calculate how much is enough, he advises against stocking up on supplements.


First Published: Sunday, April 25, 2010 - 00:00
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