Melatonin (MLT) is a recently discovered phytochemical in wine, but its influence on physiological MLT levels is still unknown. This study aimed at evaluating variations, in serum and saliva, of MLT concentrations after the intake of MLT-enriched red wine. Twelve healthy volunteers were recruited to receive 125 mL of red wine naturally lacking of MLT (placebo, PLC), or the same wine enriched with MLT (MLT+). A physiological steady decline of serum MLT was observed from baseline up to 90 min, for both wines. After PLC intake, the decrease was significantly faster than the one occurring after MLT+ wine, which thus delayed the drop down of serum MLT with a plateau at 30⁻60 min. Salivary MLT levels slightly peaked at 45 min after MLT+ wine intake, without statistical significance. Therefore, the intake of a glass of MLT-enriched red wine changed serum levels of the indoleamine, supporting the role of wine MLT in counteracting the physiological decline of the hormone into the bloodstream.
Keywords: Mediterranean diet; functional foods; indoleamines; nutraceuticals.