Black grapes are small, sweet fruits – famous for their deep purple blue color that makes them look almost black.Their color comes from the high concentration of anthocyanins, an antioxidant responsible for the color of other black, purple and blue fruits and vegetables.Anthocyanins also color foods like blueberries, eggplants, and eggplant cauliflower.
1. Delicious and nutritious
The first obvious health benefit from black grapes is their nutritional profile. 138 grams of seedless black grapes provide:
- Calories: 90
- Carbs: 24 grams
- Fibre: 1 gram
- Protein: 1 gram
- Fat: 1 gram
- Vitamin C: 17% of daily value (DV)
- Vitamin A: 11% DV
- Iron: 2% DV
Like most fruits, black grapes are predominantly a source of carbs and provide almost no fat and protein. However, they are a source of vitamins C and A. Vitamin C is a water-soluble vitamin that your body uses to improve iron absorption, collagen production, and strengthen your immune system. It is also a powerful antioxidant that can help prevent some chronic diseases. Vitamin A, on the other hand, is a fat-soluble vitamin that is involved in the body’s immune function, cell growth and development, and eye health.
2. Contains a lot of antioxidants
In addition to its high vitamin C content, black grapes also contain many antioxidants. Antioxidants are compounds that help fight oxidative stress, which occurs when your body has too many free radicals.Black grapes contain significant amounts of polyphenols, a compound with a strong antioxidant power. As mentioned above, the typical colour of black grapes comes from the anthocyanin content – the main polyphenol found in berries.
Another essential antioxidant found in black grapes is resveratrol, known for its anti-cancer, anti-inflammatory and anti-aging properties. Most of the black grape’s antioxidants are concentrated in their shells, containing significant amounts of other antioxidants, including catechin and epicatechin, caffeic acid, catechin gallate epicatechin and gallic acid. Grape seeds are also rich in these beneficial compounds.
3. Can support cardiovascular health
The antioxidant properties of anthocyanins and resveratrol may help reduce the risk of heart disease. Therefore, adding black grapes to your diet can support your heart’s health. For example, anthocyanins can protect you against atherosclerosis – the accumulation of plaque in arteries – by reducing oxidative stress and inflammation. In addition, they can reduce arterial stiffness, leading to improved blood flow and lower blood pressure. Anthocyanins can also reduce both bad LDL and bad cholesterol levels.
For resveratrol, animal and in vitro studies have shown that it can also improve vascular function. Furthermore, resveratrol can prevent inflammation and inhibit plaque accumulation, potentially reducing the risk of atherosclerosis and stroke.
4. May have anti-diabetic effects
Polyphenols in black grapes can also provide anti-diabetes effects, helping to control blood sugar levels. Diabetes is characterized by persistently high blood sugar levels and a decline in the ability to regulate insulin production.
In vitro studies show that resveratrol can activate a protein called sirtuin 1 (SIRT1), which reduces insulin resistance. In addition, animal studies show that resveratrol can also reduce insulin resistance and improve the body’s insulin secretion. This can help reduce diabetes-related complications. However, more clinical studies are needed to fully understand the effect of resveratrol on blood sugar control as the evidence from current studies is inconsistent.
5. May have anti-cancer properties
Again, resveratrol and anthocyanins can give black grapes anticancer properties. Research shows that both antioxidants can help fight cancer cells by preventing the growth and spread of tumors, which affects how cancer develops. These antioxidants can also cause apoptosis of cells – the apoptosis of cancer cells.
In vitro studies have shown the anticancer effect of resveratrol on various cancers, including gastric, breast, liver, thyroid, ovarian and prostate cancers. Similarly, animal and in vitro studies support the anticancer effects of anthocyanins on gastric, skin, colorectal, cervical and breast cancer.
6. Other potential benefits
Again, the antioxidants in black grapes can provide some more health benefits, such as improving your hair and skin, while providing some antibacterial properties. However, these benefits have not been extensively studied as those mentioned throughout this article.
Can promote skin health
Research shows that antioxidants such as anthocyanins in black grapes can not only fight skin cancer effectively but also treat minor skin problems such as acne.In addition, antioxidants in black grapes can also protect against the harmful effects of exposure to ultraviolet radiation, usually sunburn, edema or water retention, hyperpigmentation and skin cancer.
May provide anti-bacterial properties
Antioxidants found in black grape skins can act as antimicrobial agents that can counteract the growth of antibiotic-resistant harmful bacteria and toxin-producing molds. In vitro studies show that antimicrobial activity has significantly inhibited the growth of foodborne pathogenic bacteria, such as Staphylococcus aureus, Enterococcus faecalis and Enterobacter aerogenes.Similarly, their antifungal activity appears to be effective against toxoplastic molds such as Penicillium chrysogenum, Penicillium expansum, Aspergillus niger and Aspergillus versicolor.
Can promote hair growth
In vitro, animal and human studies show that resveratrol can promote hair growth. Evidence suggests that antioxidants can stimulate the transition of the hair cycle from the telogen phase – also known as the rest phase – to the anagen phase, or the active growth phase, thereby stimulating hair growth. It can also protect your hair follicles from oxidative stress and increase the density of your hair.
Like most grapes, the benefits of black grapes come almost exclusively from their high antioxidant content, namely anthocyanins and resveratrol. These compounds in black grapes are good for your cardiovascular health, the ability to regulate blood sugar levels, and possibly even the ability to fight cancer cell growth. Although some studies support their benefits to skin, hair and antimicrobial properties, further studies are needed.