Resveratrol (2014-15, 2017) & Diabetic Retinopathy


Learn more about support for diabetic retinopathy


Researchers find that one reason the polyphenol resveratrol is beneficial for eye health is that it has the ability to cross the semi-permeable blood-brain and blood-ocular barriers.

A study measured the concentration of trans-resveratrol, taken orally, in human eyes. It is metabolized so rapidly by the digestive system that it can be detected in blood samples within 10 minutes of ingestion.

Scientists determined that trans-resveratrol and three metabolites of resveratrol (especially resveratrol-3-O-sulfate) were found in eye tissue (conjunctiva, aqueous humor and vitreous humor) following taking the nutrient orally. The measurements of resveratrol levels in eye tissue in this study helps to define dosages in future treatment of ocular disease.

Researchers: S. Wang, Z. Wang, et al,
Published: Tissue Distribution of trans-Resveratrol and Its Metabolites after Oral Administration in Human Eyes, Journal of Ophthalmology, March, 2017.


Researchers wanted to evaluate whether the nutrient resveratrol anti-inflammatory capacity would be helpful in the retinas of diabetic lab animals.

Diabetic rats were given oral resveratrol for four months. The treatment not only improved their glucose tolerance without changing blood insulin levels, but improved the health of their retinas.

The researchers commented that whether resveratrol so benefits the patient indirectly or directly merits further research.

Researchers: F. Ghadiri Soufi, E. Arbabi-Aval, M. Rezaei Kanavi, H. Ahmadieh.

Published: Anti-inflammatory properties of resveratrol in the retinas of type 2 diabetic rats, Clinical and Experimental Pharmacology and Physiology, January, 2015


Moderate alcohol consumption (especially red wine) has been associated with improved cardiovascular functioning because its high polyphenol content improves vascular flexibility, reduces inflammation and inhibits formation of new blood vessels. Polyphenols are micronutrients with many recognized benefits.

The beneficial relationship of polyphenols to blood vessels has suggested it as a benefical nutrient for the eyes -- where good microcirculation is essential to delivery nutrients to eye tissue, and inhibition of new blood vessels that can distort the retina is also important.

Researchers find that the polyphenol resveratrol behaves as an antioxidant, anti-inflammatory agent, restricts new blood vessels and is an anti-tumour agent. For this reason is has great potential in ocular disease.

Researchers: C. Bola, H. Bartlett, et al
Published: Resveratrol and the eye: activity and molecular mechanisms, Graefes Archives for Clinical and Experimental Ophthalmology, May, 2014.