April 1, 2001
ARS Studies Health Benefits of Grapes, Berries
OXFORD, Miss.--Scientists at the U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Agricultural Research Service (ARS) found that fruits such as blueberries, cranberries and huckleberries, as well as muscadine grapes, contain a significant amount of the antioxidant resveratrol. After analyzing the fruits' skin, juice, pulp and seeds, chemist Agnes Rimando at the Natural Products Utilization Research Unit based here found that muscadine grapes showed the highest level of resveratrol, especially in the skin and seeds. These findings add to the growing research that certain fruits, especially grapes that are turned into muscadine wine, reduce cardiovascular and cancer risks by stymieing free radical activity (J Nutr 2000, May; 130, 5:1091-4). According to ARS, future research will look at how to enhance resveratrol production from select species of berry and grape crops. For additional information, visit www.ars.usda.gov.
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