The mention of muscadine grapes conjures up childhood memories of Grandpa and his prized crock of homemade muscadine wine. But there’s been some big news on the antioxidant front…muscadine isn’t about the wine crock anymore.
Why are antioxidants beneficial? Antioxidants provide health benefits that play a critical role in your body's defense by destroying excess free radicals before they can wreak havoc on your body.
So what can happen if you don’t get enough antioxidants?
- You may be susceptible to free radical damage.
- Your energy and stamina may decrease.
- Your immune system may be diminished.
- You may suffer the effects of aging faster.
Before modern times, eating your vegetables was sufficient to take care of free radical damage. But now, eating your veggies may not be enough, especially with the nutrient-depleted soil in which most vegetables grow.
What are some sources of antioxidants?
You're probably familiar with some of the most well-known antioxidants found in vegetables and fruits -- like Vitamin C, Vitamin E, even beta-carotene. But, have you heard of the powerful antioxidant punch-packer, the American muscadine grape?
Muscadine grape, a powerful antioxidant
- Muscadine grapes grow in the southeastern US. They are usually purple or bronze in color. Muscadines don’t look like other grapes. They're big, beautiful and luscious compared to the other grape varieties you find at the grocery store.
- Unlike other grapes, which are bred seedless, muscadines contain both seeds and thick skins. This is great, because 90% of the nutritional health benefits of grapes are in the skin and seeds.
- Better yet muscadines naturally contain an extra set of chromosomes that other grapes don't have. This is beneficial because these extra chromosomes contain genes that help supply a broader range of health-supporting components than other grapes.
- Here’s a list of bioactive compounds found in muscadine grapes: Ellagic acid, Quercetin, Resveratrol, Anthocyanidins, Cyanidin, OPCs (oligomeric procyanidins), Tartaric acid, Caffeic acid, Chlorogenic acid, Peonidin, Cinnamic acid, Delphinidin, Epicatechin, Petunidin, Gallic acid, Geraniol, Vitamin C, Myricetin, Kaempferol, Coumaric acid, Malvidin
To get the goodness that muscadines have to offer, without overdoing it on too much sugar, here are some tips:
- Limit yourself to no more than 10 raw grapes eaten within a 5-hour period.
- Search out supplements that draw antioxidants from muscadine grapes.
- Occasionally, enjoy a glass of homemade muscadine wine from a friend if you know someone who has muscadine grapes and makes wine.
More tips on how you can fight free radical damage with antioxidants can be found by visiting Essential Supplementation.