Holistic medicine

Red wine extract

Red wine extract

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Red wine extract is an effective food supplement with the positive ingredients of red wine, a large number of health-promoting secondary plant substances, so-called polyphenols.


Polyphenols are a group of phytochemicals that are mainly used as radical scavengers in the body. Some polyphenols are even stronger radical scavengers than vitamin C, E and beta-carotene. It was found that the polyphenols contained in red wine have a forty percent greater range of action than, for example, vitamin E. They also have a protective effect on the heart, which is explained by the fact that they reduce the accumulation of blood platelets and prevent fat oxidation. Polyphenols are immunomodulatory, anti-cancer (anti-cancer) and anti-inflammatory. They are mainly found in and directly under the fruit skin.

The most important polyphenols in the red wine extract

The most important types of polyphenol in the red wine extract are so-called oligomeric proanthocyanidins (OPC) and resveratrol.


OPC is the abbreviation for oligomeric proanthocyanidins. OPC are found in the peel and kernel of fruit, such as in apple, cherry, blueberry and especially in grapes. OPC are radical scavengers, support our cardiovascular system and have a strengthening effect on the immune system. They prevent that too much LDL cholesterol is deposited in the vessels and thus have an anti-arteriosclerotic effect, so they can prevent arteriosclerosis (arteriosclerosis). For example, OPC are extremely important for diabetics because the high blood sugar levels damage the blood vessels considerably in the long term. In addition, the OPCs are said to have slightly hypotensive properties.


In addition to the OPC, resveratrol is one of the most important phenols contained in the red wine extract. Resveratrol is mainly found in red wine and is a component of the vine, with which it protects itself against harmful fungi and other attackers. This plant substance is also very healthy for us humans. Like all polyphenols, it belongs to the radical scavengers, counteracts aging processes in the cells and ensures that the vessels remain elastic.

Resveratrol is mainly found in the skins of grapes, is both fat and water soluble and therefore has an even greater range of action as an antioxidant than other radical scavengers. It is said to have an inhibitory effect on the growth of cancer cells, particularly those involved in the development of breast cancer. But it is also said to protect against other types of cancer, such as colon cancer or prostate cancer. Resveratrol is also thought to have a preventive effect, especially with regard to diseases of the cardiovascular system. It can prevent platelets from clumping together, protect against hardening of the arteries and lower the cholesterol levels of the “bad” cholesterol LDL.

Effect of the red wine extract

The red wine extract owes its health-promoting effects to its ingredients, the polyphenols. The first priority is the effect as a radical scavenger. The polyphenols are able to trap reactive oxygen and nitrogen molecules and thereby prevent damage in the cell metabolism. The active ingredients of the red wine extract can prevent the platelets from clumping and thus prevent arteriosclerosis. They protect the vascular system and have a positive effect on the body's defenses.

It is also believed that the development of cancer cells with red wine extract can be prevented. This is especially true for breast cancer. It has been shown that a specific enzyme that is involved in the production of estrogen can be inhibited by the extract. Estrogen is often involved in the development of breast cancer. There is evidence that red wine extract can also have a beneficial effect on diseases such as arthritis, glaucoma, Alzheimer's and certain autoimmune diseases.

In the meantime, the red wine extract is even used in the cosmetics industry because, for example, the OPCs it contains are important for skin collagen. They increase the elasticity of the skin and thereby prevent wrinkles. The extract is therefore used to make various creams and masks.

How do I take red wine extract?

Red wine extract is a food supplement that contains the health-promoting ingredients from red wine in a concentrated form. It is also alcohol-free, so that the unfavorable effects of alcohol on the body are avoided. Because in order to supply the body with the amount of red wine extract contained in a capsule, humans would have to drink about four to five liters of wine a day, which would certainly not be health-promoting. Red wine extract is commercially available in capsule or tablet form without a prescription.

Before taking nutritional supplements, it is advisable to discuss with the family doctor whether they are suitable in individual cases and how they should be dosed. (sw, kh)

Author and source information

This text corresponds to the specifications of the medical literature, medical guidelines and current studies and has been checked by medical doctors.

Susanne Waschke, Barbara Schindewolf-Lensch


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