Resveratrol is a naturally occurring stilbenoid, a type of phenol, produced by several plants, most notably the skin of red grapes. Much has been written about resveratrol, not all of it true.
However, one thing seems certain, vitamin D and resveratrol interact via an unknown mechanism, probably one that has to do with the vitamin D receptor. Let’s look at some of the research that implicates resveratrol and vitamin D:
Vitamin D increases the amount of cathelicidin, a naturally occurring antibiotic. This September, researchers at the Linus Pauling Institute in Oregon discovered that resveratrol and vitamin D together produce more cathelicidin than either one does alone. In many disciplines of science, this is called synergy.
Guo C, Sinnott B, Niu B, Lowry MB, Fantacone ML, Gombart AF. Synergistic induction of human cathelicidin antimicrobial peptide gene expression by vitamin D and stilbenoids. Mol Nutr Food Res. 2013 Sep 14.
Last year, researchers in Poland discovered that resveratrol and vitamin D worked synergistically in controlling methylation in cancer, a crucial mechanism in epigenetics. Methylation in epigenetics is one of the ways the body controls which genes are expressed.
Stefanska B, Salamé P, Bednarek A, Fabianowska-Majewska K.Comparative effects of retinoic acid, vitamin D and resveratrol alone and in combination with adenosine analogues on methylation and expression of phosphatase and tensin homologue tumour suppressor gene in breast cancer cells. Br J Nutr. 2012 Mar;107(6):781-90.
It also seems that resveratrol works by mediating the response of the vitamin D receptor to activated vitamin D. Professor JoEllen Welsh’s group at Notre Dame proved this to be true. They showed that resveratrol enhanced the growth inhibitory effects of activated vitamin D in cancer.
I am not competent to advise you to drink more red wine or take a resveratrol supplement. However, if resveratrol works by increasing the sensitivity of the vitamin D receptor to vitamin D, it may be that therapy with vitamin D will be improved by resveratrol supplementation. Future research should clarify the interaction between the two.