Resveratrol helps improve cognition, ease osteoarthritis pain in postmenopausal women
Regular supplementation with low-dose resveratrol in postmenopausal women helps improve cognitive function, as well as alleviate chronic pain due to age-related osteoarthritis, according to data from the Resveratrol for Healthy Ageing in Women study.
The phytoestrogen had been shown to improve cerebrovascular and cognitive functions in postmenopausal women in a previous 14-week pilot study. Researchers conducted the current 24-month trial to confirm these favourable effects.
In total, 125 postmenopausal women aged 45–85 years were randomized to receive 75-mg trans-resveratrol or placebo twice-daily for 12 months. They were then switched to the alternative treatment for another 12 months.
The researchers evaluated the effect of supplementation on cognition. In a separate analysis, they also assessed aspects of well-being, including pain perception, mood and depressive symptoms, menopausal symptoms, sleep quality, quality of life, and cerebrovascular responsiveness to hypercapnia as a surrogate marker of cerebrovascular function.
Results showed that compared with placebo, resveratrol supplementation produced a 33-percent improvement in overall cognitive performance (p=0.005). Women aged ≥65 years exhibited a boost in verbal memory on resveratrol relative to those aged <65 years. There were notable effects observed on cerebrovascular function and insulin sensitivity.
Furthermore, supplementation led to a reduction in the composite pain score (p<0.001), especially in women with higher body mass index. This effect correlated with improvements in cerebrovascular responsiveness to hypercapnia (p=0.014). [Menopause 2020;doi:10.1097/GME.0000000000001643]
Finally, resveratrol was also associated with marked improvements in somatic menopausal symptoms (p=0.024) and general well-being (p=0.010).
According to the researchers, the cognitive benefits of resveratrol may translate into a slowing of the accelerated cognitive decline associated with ageing and menopause, especially in older women. Further studies are warranted to observe whether these cognitive benefits of resveratrol can reduce the risk of dementia.