What are polyphenols?
Polyphenols are chemical compounds produced by plants, to protect them from environmental stress, disease and insect attack. Many polyphenols are also antioxidants, and there are many of these but which polyphenols are found in wine.
Wine is rich in polyphenols, containing both flavonoid and non-flavonoid polyphenols.
There are several non-flavonoid polyphenols found in wine, that are extracted from the pulp of grapes during pressing. These are generally found in low concentrations in both red and white wines.
Flavonoid compounds found in wine come from the seeds and skins of the grapes. The major flavonoid types found in wine are anthocyanins and tannins. These give wine its flavour and bitterness.
Flavonoids have polymer chains comprised of proanthocyanidins or OPCs. They are found in many plants, grape seeds, and skin. There are high concentrations of these OPC’s in red wine.
Because of the way it is processed, red wine has a higher content of polyphenols than white. This means that red wine also has a higher level of antioxidants than its white wine counterparts.
The polyphenol resveratrol is one of the key compounds in red wine, with some of the most impressive health benefits. Resveratrol is a phytoalexin – an antibiotic produced by plants to combat pathogens like bacteria and fungi. The protective properties of resveratrol in vines and red grapes have shown to be replicated in human bodies too.
Benefits of polyphenols in wine
Drinking red wine in moderation has been extensively proven to have myriad health benefits, including protection against neurodegenerative disease. This neural protection has been linked to the polyphenol compounds contained in red wine.
Oxidative stress within cells can lead to signs of premature ageing, as well as Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s disease. Polyphenols in wine are antioxidants which combat free radicals and lessen oxidative stress.
Studies of resveratrol have linked this polyphenol compound to anti-inflammatory and anti-cancer effects, as well as lowering blood sugar and promoting good cardiovascular health.
Earlier we touched on OPC’s in red wine. These OPC’s have a key role in neutralising oxidants, and inhibiting the destruction of collagen, thus preventing signs of premature ageing.
Studies have further shown that polyphenols found in red wine can play a role in the prevention of diabetes and macular degeneration.
Which wine should I be drinking?
To maximise your intake of polyphenols in wine, you should choose red wine, which has a higher polyphenol concentration due to the production process. The Wine Doctor range of wines have the full spectrum of Polyphenols in them. Our wines are naturally enhanced without any additives and contain significantly higher polyphenols flavonoids and enhance resveratrol than regular red wines.
In fact, our wines have up to 20 times the health and healing properties of normal Red Wine. Now you’re “full bottle” on the subject of which polyphenols are found in wine; why not try out The Wine Doctor range today.