Resveratrol and your immune system - Blog
You messaged us in great number in response to our last blog, many thanking us for the information and others asking about the role of resveratrol, as rightly pointed out, it was in the heading and not really touched on in the article. There was so much information to cover, we didn’t want to overload, so here is part 2!
First a recap:
1) Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses that cause respiratory infections. These can range from the common cold to more serious diseases.
2) COVID-19 is the disease caused by a new coronavirus and it was first reported in December 2019.
3) It spreads quickly – this isn’t to say that everyone is at risk, however simple, common-sense techniques such as hand washing and covering our mouths when we cough or sneeze play a big role in containment.
4) Its severity depends on the person – whilst most people may get a fever and cough, the elderly, immune suppressed and those who have underlying health problems are most at risk. Stopping the spread of the disease is important to protect those groups and not to overload the already under strain medical services.
4) Vaccines are not available at present – whilst many organisations are working on a vaccine there isn’t one available yet, which is why point 1 and 2 are so important.
What are some of the things we can do?
1) Wash your hands, regularly and thoroughly.
2) Don’t go out if you don’t need to and especially don’t mingle with the most vulnerable to protect them.
3) Keep your immune system as strong as it can be.
4) Be kind and be a community <- this one is new after seeing some of the shelves in the supermarket.
Resveratrol & COVID-19
There have been a number of studies on the effects of ‘stilbene derivatives’ to inhibit coronavirus replication, including a 2006 in-vitro study2. What are stilbene derivatives? Stilbenes are produced by plants in response to injury or attack by pathogens and are an important family of bioactive molecules3,4. Stilbene derivatives can be found in mulberries, peanuts, red wine and grape skins the most common of which you will know from all our articles around resveratrol. Resveratrol is the most extensively studied stilbene. The 2006 study found that various stilbene compounds were able to inhibit coronavirus replication. This may have included resveratrol, but the study details made it somewhat difficult to determine.
In 2017, another in-vitro study5 was conducted to specifically examine the antiviral effect of resveratrol against coronavirus. In this study, cells from coronavirus infected patients were given resveratrol. The results were that resveratrol significantly inhibited coronavirus infection and prolonged cellular survival after virus infection. In addition, resveratrol decreased the replication of nucleocapsid, a protein essential for coronavirus replication. Furthermore, resveratrol down-regulated apoptosis (i.e. cellular death) induced by coronavirus. This study clearly demonstrated that resveratrol is a potent anti-coronavirus agent in-vitro. The study’s authors suggested that resveratrol can be a potential antiviral agent against coronavirus in the near future. We can hope this is truly the case.
So how does resveratrol support the immune system?
Resveratrol helps to support the first line of defence. We have circulating immune cells known as gamma delta T cells and resveratrol can help to increase these cells. As a potential plan to support your immune system during this time of year, and any time you need extra immune support, Res-V Ultimate is a great source of resveratrol.
- COVID-19 (novel coronavirus). Ministry of Health webpage. Last updated 18 March 2020. Retrieved 19 March 2020. https://www.health.govt.nz/our-work/diseases-and-conditions/covid-19-novel-coronavirus
- Li Y, Li ZL, Zhao WJ, Wen RX, Meng QW, Zeng Y. Synthesis of stilbene derivatives with inhibition of SARS coronavirus replication. Eur J Med Chem. 2006 Sep;41(9):1084–9.
- Higdon J, Drake VJ, Steward WP. Resveratrol. Micronutrient Information Center. Linus Pauling Institute, Oregon State University, Corvallis, OR; 2016.
- Fremont L. Biological Effects of Resveratrol. Life Sci. 2000;66(8):663–73.
- Lin SC, Ho CT, Chuo WH, Li S, Wang TT, Lin CC. Effective inhibition of MERS-CoV infection by resveratrol. BMC Infect Dis. 2017 Feb 13;17(1):144.
- Espinoza JL, Trung LQ, Inaoka PT, Yamada K, An DT, Mizuno S, Nakao S, Takami A. The Repeated Administration of Resveratrol Has Measurable Effects on CirculatingT-Cell Subsets in Humans. Oxid Med Cell Longev. 2017;2017:6781872.
About the Author
We use a variety of authors from both naturopathic and medical backgrounds. We also have in house researchers that compile the latest information into an easily digestible format.