In a new study, researchers found that grapes may help protect against damage to the skin caused by the sun’s ultraviolet radiation in healthy adults.
They found a 74.8% increase in natural protection of the skin when 19 healthy people took a powder of freeze-dried grapes for 14 days.
They found that a group of natural compounds—polyphenols, found in grapes as well as other fruits and vegetables—can reduce acute UV radiation damage in healthy adults.
Additionally, it can decrease proteins in the body that promote inflammation.
The research was conducted at the University of Alabama at Birmingham.
This is the first study showing that oral ingestion of table grapes has a photoprotective effect on the sunburn response in humans.
The team says the study results indicate that oral consumption of grapes has systemic beneficial effects in healthy adults.
These benefits include inhibition of inflammation and repair of DNA damage.”
In addition to consumption of the powder, the study also showed that the application of a topical extract made from a grape seed polyphenol, proanthocyanidin, can reduce sunburn cell formation.
Furthermore, preliminary results suggest that grapes may help to prevent skin cancers as well, although more studies need to be conducted in this area before drawing conclusions.
The researchers say that grape consumption may act as an edible sunscreen. They may offer additional protection which we are eager to continue learning more about.
This research is exciting because the current findings provide building blocks for additional studies that may eventuate in an oral photoprotective product from a natural source.
One author of the study is Allen Oak, M.D., a dermatologist in the UAB School of Medicine.
The study is published in the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology.
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