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What Is the Connection between Resveratrol and Weight Loss?

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  • Written By: C.B. Fox
  • Edited By: Susan Barwick
  • Last Modified Date: 21 November 2016
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Studies conducted on laboratory animals have suggested that there may be a connection between resveratrol and weight loss. Though the effect of resveratrol on humans has not been scientifically studied, there is a possibility that this enzyme could help people lose weight and improve their fitness level. Doctors are not certain how much resveratrol a person may need to take and many caution people not to take it as a supplement but rather to consume more of it through diet. The possible connection between resveratrol and weight loss, however, has prompted scientists to continue experimenting with the enzyme in order to determine whether it increases metabolism and whether it is safe for humans to take.

Resveratrol, which can be found in grape skins, peanuts, and blueberries, is currently available as a dietary supplement even though not much research has been done on it. This enzyme is also found naturally in red wine, which has the highest concentration of naturally-occurring resveratrol at about 15 milligrams per bottle. Though a study on human subjects has shown that it is safe to take up to 5 grams at a time, an amount far higher than that contained in supplements, the long-term effects of taking even 125 milligrams daily have not been studied. Despite the potential health risks of taking an untested supplement, many people take this supplement because they believe there is a connection between resveratrol and weight loss.

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In animal test subjects, the possible connection between resveratrol and weight loss has been studied. Mice that are given this supplement and a diet high in fat do not tend to gain weight. Lemurs that are given resveratrol appear to have difficulty putting weight on, largely because they do not consume as much food as they would normally. The study on lemurs found that the connection between resveratrol and weight loss may occur because this enzyme makes an animal feel less hungry while simultaneously increasing metabolism. In mice, resveratrol may also cause the animals to exercise more frequently.

The results from the tests conducted on animals to examine the connection between resveratrol and weight loss are promising. Scientists continue to examine this enzyme to determine exactly how it might affect weight loss in humans. Until human studies are complete, people should take resveratrol cautiously. There is always the possibility that, despite the potential positive effects, the enzyme could lead to serious health complications after long-term use.

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