Antioxidants are compounds in foods and beverages that can help protect healthy cells from the damaging effects of oxidative stress, a condition that may, overtime, have an impact on health. Vitamins C, E and A (as beta-carotene), and the mineral selenium, as well as certain phytonutrients (such as polyphenols) can act as antioxidants.
Concord grape is a hearty American grape with a thick, dark purple skin and seeds that naturally have phytonutrients called polyphenols Not only do polyphenols give Concord grapes their vibrant color, these plant nutrients also act as antioxidants and deliver benefits to promote health. Seedless grapes, like red table grapes, do not appear to contain the same quantity of these polyphenols.
Free Radicals are atoms or groups of atoms that have one or more unpaired electrons. They are a normal part of everyday life, and are produced during activities like exercising or digestion (when our bodies convert food into energy). Free radicals are highly reactive, but our bodies have a natural defense system – so in small numbers, they are not a big problem. However, exposure to certain environmental factors like pollution and UV radiation can also trigger the formation of free radicals. And, when there are too many free radicals for our bodies to protect against, they can set off a damaging chain reaction, which in turn can result in oxidative stress.
Flavonoids are the largest and most studied sub-group of polyphenols and represent the vast majority of the polyphenols found in both the Niagara and Concord grapes. There are thousands of different flavonoids in fruits, vegetables and certain plant-derived beverages (i.e. teas and juices). Many of these flavonoids act as antioxidants and are becoming popular because of emerging science that suggests flavonoids may have health-supporting effects.
Niagara grape is a hearty American grape, and like its cousin the Concord, it is a seeded grape with natural phytonutrients called polyphenols. Seedless grapes, like green table grapes, do not appear to contain the same quantity of these potentially health-supporting phytonutrients.
Phytonutrients are plant-based nutrients that appear to have health-supporting effects, but are not considered essential for human survival. Fruits, vegetables, grains, legumes, nuts, and teas have these compounds which are being actively investigated by the scientific community for their potential impact on health.
polyphenols are a sub-group of phytonutrients. They are found in foods like onions, tea, red wine, grapes, and certain nuts. polyphenols naturally protect plants against pathogens, parasites and predators, and often contribute to the flavor and color of fruits and vegetables. More research is necessary to determine their impact on human health.
Resveratrol is a natural compound (a polyphenol) that can sometimes be found in the skin of grapes with more found in dark grapes found in cooler climates, with less sunlight and more rainfall. Certain plants produce resveratrol in response to environmental stress like fungal infections. Scientists became interested in studying resveratrol as part of the possible link to the French Paradox.
Casey Lewis, MS, RD Welcome. I'm Welch's Health and Nutrition Manager. As a registered dietitian, I have managed nutrition projects in the US and abroad, giving me unique insights to nutrition experiences around the world. I graduated from the University of New Hampshire with a bachelor's of science in Nutritional Science and received my master's in Nutrition Communication from Tufts University.
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