Here’s what I’ve learned from spending a little time at the University of Google.
Drinking alcohol makes you smarter.
Clever women drink more, and in fact admit to drinking too much.
Red wine might be a fat buster.
From this we can readily deduce that (a.) alcohol will either kill you or it won’t and (b.) university scientists certainly do a lot of thinking about drinking. I’m just sorry I didn’t snag a little of that funding by wearing a white coat and taking notes during the hours I logged at this place.
Of the studies, I found No. 3 most interesting. The work is by researchers at Purdue University who reported their results in the Journal of Biological Chemistry. They found that a compound called piceatannol blocks an immature fat cell’s ability to develop and grow. Resveratol, a compound in red wine is converted to piceatannol after consumption.
Kee-Hong Kim, an assistant professor of food science, working with graduate student Jung Yeon Kwon, found that piceatannol binds to insulin receptors of immature fat cells in the first stage of adipogenesis, blocking insulin’s ability to control cell cycles and activate genes that carry out further stages of fat cell formation. Piceatannol essentially blocks the pathways necessary for immature fat cells to mature and grow.
Adipogenesis refers to the formation of fat cells and is my new favorite word. Even though I am personally opposed to the formation of fat cells.
Kim hopes to work on finding ways to improve the stability and solubility of piceatannol. The work was funded by the Purdue Research Foundation, in case you were wondering.
I can’t be absolutely sure about this, but I don’t think the next step is to drink a bottle of red wine a night and see if you get a visit from the Flat Stomach Fairy.
But a glass or two, well that would just be research, wouldn’t it?