The pharmaceutical and cosmetic industries have long sought to restore and reverse the effects of ageing, now scientists are investigating whether Rooibos may hold some answers… The contention that this indigenous plant could be beneficial in countering the effects of time is not far-fetched. The most accepted theory of ageing is the free-radical hypothesis. Rooibos is rich in antioxidants, which bind with free radicals and prevent them from damaging cells. Numerous local and international studies have proved that the antioxidants in Rooibos slow down and prevent various forms of cancer, reduce the risk of heart attack and stroke and provide a plethora of other health benefits.
Prominent researcher, Professor Maryna van de Venter of the Department of Biochemistry and Microbiology, was commissioned by The South African Rooibos Council in 2012 to investigate the potential influence that the antioxidants contained in Rooibos may have on molecular mechanisms thought to cause preadipocyte dysfunction. Preventing this may slow or even reverse age-related adipose redistribution and associated cosmetic changes and health risks.
The following is an excerpt from an article that was recently published by the South African Rooibos Council:
“Our research focused primarily on the preservation of healthy fat tissue as the redistribution of fat – a natural process which occurs with age – particularly to the abdominal region, has been linked to the onset of many age-related diseases such as cardiovascular disease, type II diabetes and cancer. Our aim was to slow down the rate at which these diseases develop as a way to improve the quality of an individual’s life.
“Loss of fat under the skin also results in the appearance of wrinkles, sunken eyes and skin folds. To put it in simple terms, in old age there is less fat in places where it should be and more fat in deposits where it shouldn’t be, and it’s this that significantly alters one’s state of health as one ages,” explains Prof van de Venter.
Using various independent in vitro models which mimic specific aspects of the ageing process, van de Venter and her team established that Rooibos protects preadipocytes – the predominant cells found in fat tissue – from degenerating and therefore could reverse the onset of age related diseases and even keep wrinkles at bay.
Factors responsible for the decline in preadipocyte function, include oxidative stress (inability to counteract the harmful effects of free radicals in the body) and mitochondrial dysfunction (inability to power cell functions which occurs with ageing). The study further proved that Rooibos has the ability to partially restore the function of these aged cells and that both fermented and green Rooibos can protect cells from severe oxidative stress, which firmly establishes Rooibos as an anti-ageing proponent.
Because of its finer cut and espresso method of preparation, scientific tests have proven that red espresso® has 10 times more antioxidants than traditionally-brewed Rooibos tea. This means that, in addition to its taste, the health benefits of Rooibos are concentrated tenfold in red espresso® - making it the healthiest, most powerful Rooibos tea available.
Disclaimer: The information on this blog is for educational purposes only and is not intended as medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. If you are experiencing symptoms or need health advice, please consult a healthcare professional.