What ingredients should you choose for a stem cell supplement? This morning I’d like to highlight resveratrol through a recent study. Resveratrol is an interesting story. It’s a naturally occurring chemical that’s produced by plants to defend against the stress of invading bacteria. It’s gotten quite a bit of play lately because it seems to help people keep a healthy blood sugar and rats fed the compound live longer than their peers. In addition, since it’s found in red grape skins, many a scientist has proposed it could be the reason our red wine drinking cousins the French seem to live longer than we Coke drinking Americans. To create the Regenexx stem cell supplement, we tested many different supplements in the lab against human stem cells and resveratrol performed very well, hence we included it our proprietary formula. Now new research continues to support that the compound helps cartilage cells, a constant issue for patients with arthritis.
The new study used some fancy tools to measure the properties of cartilage at the nano-level, including Atomic Force Microscopy. This tool cannot only image things at a nanometer scale (like a tiny cell) in 3D, but it can also apply tiny forces as if you were pushing on the cells to make sure they were still pliable. The picture above is very telling. It’s a 3D map of the surface of the cartilage. On the left, the cells are tight and round and while the surface looks “pebbly”, at a nano-scale, that translates to smooth. The middle picture is what happens when cartilage cells die-they become large and blistered appearing, making the surface rough. On the right is a sample of cartilage treated with resveratrol and then exposed to the same toxic chemical as the cells in the middle-but the cartilage surface remains calm and flat like a still lake. Resveratrol also protected the outer covering of the cells (cell membranes), the cell elasticity, and the cell skeleton.
The upshot? Resveratrol has been shown in a number of studies to protect cartilage cells and as a result, we recommend it to our patients with arthritis. In addition, we were so impressed with its stem cell support function in our own tests that we included a high quality resveratrol in our stem cell support formula. So if you have arthritis, either drink that red wine or make sure resveratrol is in the supplement you take!