Brazil study supports white grape juice’s heart health, weight benefits

By Stephen Daniells

- Last updated on GMT

© Getty Images / HuyThoa
© Getty Images / HuyThoa
Drinking grape juice may help raise levels of HDL (‘good’) cholesterol and help reduce body mass index and waist circumference, says a new study from the University of Caxias do Sul in Brazil.

Data published in the journal Nutrition​ indicated that drinking 7 mL per kg of body weight per day of 100% white grape juice (Vitis labrusca​) led to a 16% average increase in HDL cholesterol.

“HDL cholesterol is an important predictor of risk of cardiovascular diseases. Data from a meta-analysis showed that increasing by 2% serum levels of HDL-cholesterol, the incidence of coronary heart disease is reduced by 2% in men and 3% in women,” ​explained the researchers.

“To our knowledge, this is the first study showing that [white grape juice] also increases HDL-cholesterol. Here, we demonstrated that the consumption of 7mL/Kg weight/day of [white grape juice] during 30 days increased HDL levels by 16%, which may contribute to minimize risk of cardiovascular diseases.”

The study also found that the study participants – 25 women aged between 50 and 67 – also experienced statistically significant reductions in BMI (mean decrease of 0.2 kg/m2), waist circumference (mean decrease of 1.9 cm), and abdominal circumference (mean decrease of 1.8 cm).

“Although there are already studies with purple grape juice, this is the first study that evaluates the effect of with [white grape juice] supplementation in humans.”

“Our results indicate that moderate consumption of [white grape juice] has a positive impact on reducing weight and abdominal fat, which is directly associated with cardiovascular disease.”


Waist measurement © Getty Images monkeybusinessimages
© Getty Images / monkeybusinessimages

Commenting on the potential mechanism(s) of action, the researchers noted that grape juice is a rich source of antioxidant phenolic compounds. While white grape juice contains lower polyphenol levels than purple grape juice, it did exhibit significant antioxidant activity, said the researchers.

Despite the changes to BMI and waist circumference, and the significant increases in HDL levels, no significant changes were recorded for blood pressure, blood glucose, insulin, and levels of oxidative damage were observed.

“Future long-term studies should be conducted in healthy human subjects in order to fully understand the [white grape juice] mechanisms on redox parameters,” ​they wrote.

Source: Nutrition
Published online ahead of print, doi: 10.1016/j.nut.2018.05.026
“White grape juice increases HDL cholesterol and reduces body mass index, abdominal and waist circumference in women”
Authors: C. Zuanazzi et al.