SINGAPORE—Dark soy sauce, widely used in Asia, may prove to be more effective than red wine and vitamin C in combating human cell damage, researchers in Singapore said.
Scientists found that the sauce—derived from fermented soybeans—contains antioxidant properties about 10 times more effective than red wine and 150 times more potent than vitamin C, Singapore's Strait Times reported.
Antioxidants—found in red wine, fruits and vegetables—counter the effects of free radicals, unstable atoms that attack human cells and tissues.
Free radicals have been linked to the aging process as well as a range of ailments including Parkinson's disease, cancer and heart disease.
The National University of Singapore study also found that the sauce improved blood flow by as much as 50 percent in the hours after consumption.
"There's a preventative aspect, showing that it may potentially slow down the rate of cardiovascular and neurodegenerative diseases," research team leader Professor Barry Halliwell said.
But he cautioned against taking large amounts of dark soy sauce because of its high salt content, which could lead to high blood pressure.