7 Important Reasons to

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia and ME & Chronic Fatigue Syndrome' started by jaminhealth, Jul 8, 2012.

  1. jaminhealth

    jaminhealth Well-Known Member

    take Grape Seed Extract from ProHealth Library of articles:

    Grape seed extract is on my list of "must take" supplements. Here’s why.

    Grape Seed Extract Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

    Proanthocyanidin (OPC), a powerful antioxidant found in grape seeds, grape skins, strawberries and French maritime pine bark, has anti-inflammatory properties which have been shown to promote normal blood flow and thus benefit the cardiovascular system.

    OPC’s prevent "blood sludge" that can cause strokes and heart attacks. OPC’s work like aspirin (only better and safer) to prevent abnormal blood clotting. OPC’s may be a superior answer for those who need thinner blood (like people with arrhythmias), as a safer alternative to coumadin.

    OPC’s are also called "Pycnogenol"® (a registered trade name) when they are derived from pine bark. The grape seed extract is slightly more potent and less expensive. You will see the terms Pycnogenol®, OPC’s, and grape seed extract used interchangeably.

    • In one study, 38 cigarette smokers were divided into two groups and received either 500 mg of aspirin or 125 mg of Pycnogenol®. After taking these doses, each subject smoked a cigarette, which is known to increase blood platelet aggregation (blood clumping). After two hours, blood samples were analyzed.

    - Both groups had greatly reduced platelet aggregation,

    - But those in the aspirin group had increased bleeding times while those in the OPC group did not.

    Other studies in smokers have also shown the anti-aggregation effect of OPC’s.

    • In another study, 30 people were given Pycnogenol® and 10 were given placebo. People in the Pycnogenol® group had significant reduction in blood pressure, capillary (small blood vessel) leakage, and blood vessel inflammation, all risk factors for heart disease. There were no negative side effects or adverse changes in blood chemistries from Pycnogenol.®

    Grape Seed Extract a Boon to Diabetics
    (and those who don’t want to be diabetics)

    Pycnogenol® benefits the cardiovascular system by decreasing inflammation and improving blood viscosity in both normal and diabetic subjects. These effects can be especially important to diabetics. New research shows that OPC’s have even more benefits for diabetics by helping to lower blood sugar levels and improving microcirculation.

    • OPC’s were administered to diabetic patients. Leg ulcers (which often result in gangrene and loss of limbs in diabetics) healed 25%-29% faster in the group taking OPC’s. This is a significant benefit for diabetic patients and could help prevent loss of limbs that often occurs in diabetes.

    • OPC’s have also been shown to help lower blood sugar levels. Researchers looked at the effect that Pycnogenol® had on alpha-glucosidase, an enzyme that breaks down carbohydrates into glucose molecules. In this study, Pycnogenol® was compared to acarbose, a synthetic drug (sold under the brand name Precose) that inhibits alpha-glucosidase. Pycnogenol® was found to be 190 times more potent at inhibiting alpha-glucosidase, producing a greater delay in glucose absorption. At higher concentrations, OPC’s greatly slowed the entrance of carbohydrates into the blood stream compared to the drug.

    • Another study showed that Pycnogenol® improved the level of microangiopathy (small blood vessel abnormalities), decreased capillary filtration, improved symptoms and reduced edema in 18 out of 18 diabetic patients, with no subjects dropping out of the study due to adverse side effects. There were no improvements seen in the control group.

    • OPC’s have been shown in French trials to help limit the progression of diabetic retinopathy. In one study, 60% of diabetics taking 150 mg per day of OPCs from grape seed extract had no progression of retinopathy compared to 47% of those taking a placebo.

    • Another trial including 77 subjects with type 2 diabetes, (half receiving 100 mg of Pycnogenol® and half receiving a placebo daily), showed after 12 weeks that subjects in the Pycnogenol® group had significantly lowered their plasma glucose levels compared to placebo. Pycnogenol® subjects were also found to have improved artery function.

    • In another trial of 30 type 2 diabetics, researchers found that increasing doses of Pycnogenol® (doses of 50, 100, 200, and 300 mg) lowered blood sugar levels in a dose-dependent fashion. (The more grape seed extract, the lower the blood sugar levels.) Subjects who received 100 to 300 mg of Pycnogenol® had the most significant lowering of their fasting glucose levels.

    Anti-Cancer Effects of Grape Seed Extract

    Talc (talcum powder) increases "ovarian neoplastic transformation" (turns cells of the female ovary into cancerous cells). A recent study showed that Pycnogenol® blocked this talc-induced cancerous change in ovarian cells. PC’s have also been shown to induce apoptosis (programmed cell death) in breast cancer cells but not in normal breast tissue.

    OPC’s reduce four factors known to stimulate cancer cell growth:

    • Blood sugar levels,

    • Insulin levels,

    • Free radicals,

    • And inflammation.

    This means that OPC’s may be a potent factor not only in cancer prevention but also in cancer treatment. (See our medical paper on cancer diet and nutrition for full details).

    But Wait! There’s More! (More Benefits of Grape Seed Extract)

    If heart-protective, anti-diabetic, anti-cancer effects aren’t enough to make you consider adding grape seed extract to your supplement regimen, here are a few more benefits of this amazing flavonoid for you to consider:

    • Anti-allergenic (grape seed stabilizes histamine release and so acts as a natural anti-histamine, without any drowsy side-effects). Asthmatic children who took Pycnogenol® were able to decrease their asthma medications.

    • Improves skin elasticity by increasing collagen in the skin. For this reason, OPC’s are often used in skin rejuvenation programs.

    • Prevents varicose veins by strengthening blood vessels and increasing collagen (same reason it helps improve aging skin).

    • Helps prevent Alzheimer’s disease by blocking the formation of beta amyloid (a protein associated with Alzheimer’s).

    • Reduces symptoms of endometriosis. This was recently reported in Family Medicine journal; yet another study showing positive benefit.

    I Don’t Know About You, But…

    The proven (but non-FDA-approved, blessed or verified) effects of grape seed extract (aka Pycnogenol,® OPC’s, etc.) are just too great for me to overlook. I personally take 100mg, 3 times per day with meals and will continue to do so. The new research coming out on this important herb convinces me that I’ve made a good decision.

    * * * *
    * Dr. Dana Myatt, NMD, is a practicing naturopathic family physician, educator, author, and speaker with a special interest in nutrition. Dr. Myatt lectures widely to medical and lay audiences, and hosts a website (DrMyattsWellnessClub.com). This information is reproduced with kind permission from Dr. Myatt’s informative e-newsletter - HealthBeat News. For a free subscription, click here.

    1. Inhibition of smoking-induced platelet aggregation by aspirin and Pycnogenol. Thromb Res. 1999 Aug 15;95(4):155-61.
    2. Pine bark extract reduces platelet aggregation. Integr Med. 2000 Mar 21;2(2):73-77.
    3. Single and multiple dose pharmacokinetics of maritime pine bark extract (pycnogenol) after oral administration to healthy volunteers. BMC Clin Pharmacol. 2006 Aug 3;6:4.
    4. Inhibition of COX-1 and COX-2 activity by plasma of human volunteers after ingestion of French maritime pine bark extract (Pycnogenol). Biomed Pharmacother. 2006 Jan;60(1):5-9. Epub 2005 Oct 26.
    5. Diabetic ulcers: microcirculatory improvement and faster healing with pycnogenol. Clin Appl Thromb Hemost. 2006 Jul;12(3):318-23.
    6. Oligomeric procyanidins of French maritime pine bark extract (Pycnogenol) effectively inhibit alpha-glucosidase. Diabetes Res Clin Pract. 2006 Nov 10.
    7. Rapid relief of signs/symptoms in chronic venous microangiopathy with pycnogenol: a prospective, controlled study. Angiology. 2006 Oct-Nov;57(5):569-76.
    8. Procyanidolic oligomers in the treatment of fragile capillaries and diabetic retinopathy. Med Int 1981;16:432–4 [in French].
    8A. Retinopathies and OPC. Bordeaux Medicale 1978;11:1467–74 [in French].
    9. Contribution to the study of procyanidolic oligomeres: Endotelon in diabetic retinopathy (in regard to 30 observations). Gaz Med de France 1982;89:3610–4 [in French].
    10. Antidiabetic effect of Pycnogenol French maritime pine bark extract in patients with diabetes type II. Life Sci. 2004 Oct 8;75(21):2505-13.
    11. French maritime pine bark extract Pycnogenol dose-dependently lowers glucose in type 2 diabetic patients.Diabetes Care. 2004 Mar;27(3):839.
    12. Pycnogenol reduces talc-induced neoplastic transformation in human ovarian cell cultures. Phytother Res. 2007 Mar 14; [Epub ahead of print]
    13. Selective induction of apoptosis in human mammary cancer cells (MCF-7) by pycnogenol. Anticancer Res. 2000 Jul-Aug;20(4):2417-20.
    14. Nutritional and Botanical Considerations in the Systemic Treatment of Cancer: 2006 Update.
    15. Pycnogenol as an adjunct in the management of childhood asthma. J Asthma. 2004;41(8):825-32
    16. Stabilization of collagen by polyphenols. Angiologica 1972;9:248–56 [in German].
    17. Non-enzymatic degradation of acid-soluble calf skin collagen by superoxide ion: protective effect of flavonoids. Biochem Pharmacol 1983;32:53–8.
    18. Pycnogenol protects neurons from amyloid-beta peptide-induced apoptosis. Brain Res Mol Brain Res. 2002 Jul 15;104(1):55-65.
    19. Pine Bark Extract Reduces Symptoms of Endometriosis. J Reprod Med. 2007;52:000-000.

    Note: This information has not been evaluated by the FDA. It is not intended to prevent, diagnose, treat or cure any condition, illness, or disease and is not a substitute for personal medical care. It is very important that you make no change in your healthcare plan or health support regimen without researching and discussing it in collaboration with your professional healthcare team.
  2. Mikie

    Mikie Moderator

    The Library here has a wealth of info which is so helpful. Thanks for bringing it here to share.

    Love, Mikie
  3. jaminhealth

    jaminhealth Well-Known Member

    for so many health issues....I have books on this supplement I've bought over the years, but this one article covers so much...

    And all TRUE....

    I actually have a list of about 45 health issues these OPC address, but don't have the energy to type the whole list...I got this list when I first started on Pycnogenol in 1995 and saved this paperwork all these years.[This Message was Edited on 07/10/2012]
  4. jaminhealth

    jaminhealth Well-Known Member

    taking Pycnogenol and then Grape Seed Extract for the last 16 yrs.

    Allergies and sinus and headache issues pretty much history.

    Everyone including me, report increased energy.

    Edema eliminated.

    Eyesight is stable, no eye exams in about 5 yrs.

    Gum health good.

    No cancers.....!!!????!!!!
  5. jaminhealth

    jaminhealth Well-Known Member

    like city of hope, mayo, maryland medical, that they are using grape seed ex in their cancer research works....
  6. Thank you for all the great info on grapeseed extract, Jam! I started taking it approx a couple months or so ago and I have noticed some improvement in my energy... that ALONE is reason enough to try the grapeseed extract (esp those of us with ME/CFS). But it is good to know all its potential benefits, so thanks so much for sharing, Jam!

    As a survivor of 2 diff cancers, I am esp happy to see its cancer-fighting benefits! I also have problems with varicose veins, so I will be thrilled if I notice improvement in those! I made the mistake years ago, after the birth of my fourth child, of having EVLT surgery on my left leg to get rid of varicose veins that had become problematic. I was suppose to get the other leg done 6 months later, but wasn't able to because I found myself in the midst of mono that wouldn't go away... and my life was never the same.... I now believe that the surgery was what ushered in my ME/CFS. I also know that my circulation isn't so great in my left leg since the surgery shut down the large, main vein in that leg. Wish I'd known about this natural alternative years ago! Now if only I can get my husband to take it too!

    One question though... since it is known to lower blood pressure, and my husband and I already have low blood pressure (which can cause problems at times)... is it going to lower our blood pressure even more? Although, I haven't noticed a problem with that so far.... ??? Any thoughts on that? Thanks again, Jam, for sharing!

    Shel :)
  7. jaminhealth

    jaminhealth Well-Known Member

    on the lowering of BP, just watch it...I believe it's more directed to those with higher BP, it can lower it....

    Grape Seed works on circulation and keeps our blood clean....I've read where people on a blood thinning drug can get off the drug thanks to grape seed ex.....

    Don't ever do that without a knowledgeable MD's directions.

    Just make sure you get enough good sodium, sea salt preferrably....that's the only salt I use.

    Any surgery can do a job on us and leave us with complications, I know that one well from my recent hip replacement, body is messed up worse than ever.....BUT, no groin pain....so I've traded a lot of pain issues...more of others, less of one area.........jam
  8. jaminhealth

    jaminhealth Well-Known Member

    be mindful of it lifting once on Grape Seed Ex....I've never had the "fog" issue but know many here do. I believe, for me, being on Grape Seed 5 yrs before I was "hit" with the FM trauma has kept my body from having the fog....my theory on all this....
  9. Yes, I do take sea salt too... and it is a great way to bring up our blood pressure naturally if you drink enough water with it. I don't take it regularly, though maybe I should. I only take it if I start feeling faint. But I will keep an eye on that... thanks for the heads up. My dad is on Coumadin and I wish I could get him to look into this with his doctor... but he's not as open to natural remedies. I will still pass the info on to him.

    I have had the brain fog... just feels like my brain is working like it should most the time. So I will be ecstatic if that improves too! Maybe it has but I've just been too preoccupied to notice.... hmmm.... I'll have to reflect on that... I'll let you know!

    Thanks again, Jam!

  10. jaminhealth

    jaminhealth Well-Known Member

    another person on a health board reported that she read that taking 1 tsp of grape seed oil on empty stomach for 7 days and then reducing to 1/2 tsp daily will reduce joint pain in RA patients....could be the same for OA and FM pain. I'm out of the oil now but will do this test when I get some new grape seed oil.

    Grape Seed Oil and its Extract contain anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidant, anti-histamine, anti-aging, anti-allergic, antimicrobial, and adaptogenic activity. Iit has been beneficial in the treatment of a number of health issues which include: allergies, sinus, arthritis, edema, dermatitis, acne, wrinkles, dry and itchy skin, age spots, sun burns, chapped lips, wounds, bruising, stretch marks, varicose veins, hemorrhoids, chronic venous insufficiency, premature aging, premenstrual syndrome , weight loss, stress, dandruff, hair loss, warts, cardiovascular diseases especially atherosclerosis, hypertension, high cholesterol levels, diabetes, visual impairment, cataract, and macular degeneration.

    My eyes are stable and I haven't had an eye exam in over 5 yrs...

    Studies also suggest that its free radical scavenging activity may strengthen the immune system and reduce the risk of developing cancer. More and more research hospitals are using grape seed in their cancer research. Cancer prevention was the main reason I started with it....

    Those not taking are missing some improved health.

  11. jaminhealth

    jaminhealth Well-Known Member

    from the ProHealth library.

    LS/i used many brands, well not that many but
    these days sticking with Activin...ProHealth sells
    it and often has specials on it.
  12. jaminhealth

    jaminhealth Well-Known Member

    don't drop in at Chit Chat, there is a nice story
    about grape seed ex and an author/peace activist
    I hear on the radio on sundays and his "change"
    on being on grape seed for just 2 weeks...

    When I got on it 17+ yrs ago and got my mom on
    it who was 85 or so at the time, her voice changed
    in a short time just like Blase on this chit chat post
    of mine. Gives me goosebumps all over again...

    Hearing older weak voices changing to strong clear voices,
    the body is being woke up and circulation is working
  13. jaminhealth

    jaminhealth Well-Known Member

    re: energy, fog and so much more....this supp
    makes for a strong Immune System...

    And I've mentined this many times here, the MAIN reason I got
    on this antioxidant in 1995, we were told by a panel of research
    people and a couple MD's, it "MAY" prevent cancer...the main
    reason I jumped on it....so far so good, and so many other health
    issues cured along the way....

    Just talking to my daughter and her ex is battling stage 3 lung cancer
    and is so sick from the agressive treatments....oh how I wish he
    had been on Grape Seed Ex...all these yrs... Will never know if it
    could have saved him from this miserable disease, but I have to
    think just MAYBE it could have....

    I keep reminding my daughter to stay with Grape Seed and his cancer
    is a good reminder that she will....there are no guarantees to anythng
    but there is prevention about a lot of things we're told....I listen...[This Message was Edited on 02/21/2013]
  14. jaminhealth

    jaminhealth Well-Known Member

    a bump up. jam
  15. deepak

    deepak Member


    You said you got complications from the EVLT treatment for varicose veins ? Is that not a laser, non invasive treatment ? I have a dear friends mother who is siffering from varicose veins - has anything worked for you yet ?


    Just ordered GSE thanks to you !! It is 400 mg per capsule - is this the dose you take too ? Is there anything to be careful about while started GSE ?

  16. anchor

    anchor Member

    when i took it years ago, it dropped my cholesterol 50 points in just 2 months.

    i am in the same siruation again...so, great info.

    thanks, lisa.
  17. jaminhealth

    jaminhealth Well-Known Member

    some days I throw another 100 or 200mg in...just depends...

    What to watch for: some say they get loose bowels, I never did.

    If one has to have a surgery, get off grape seed ex 5 days or so before surgery, then one can go back on a couple days after...grape seed ex keeps our blood thinner....

    If it bothers your stomach, take with food, it never gave me any stomach issues....

    If a person takes a pharma blood thinner, then you can't take both...

    Otherwise watch for the changes, some very subtle, some can be profound.....like energy is subtle....my allergy/sinus issues were profound....truly. jam
  18. deepak

    deepak Member

    Any idea if GSE can be had if one is on baby aspirin ?

  19. jaminhealth

    jaminhealth Well-Known Member

    so much of my life and long before grape seed extract and never any issues, I take advil now since a friend told me it's better for anti inflammation help...I wouldn't be concerned about baby aspirin.

    Just remember for any surgery get off grape seed about 5 days before and then go back on a couple days after. I remember when I had hip replacement going off grape seed ex was pretty traumatic for me, but all was fine as I went back on 2 days after surgery.
  20. jaminhealth

    jaminhealth Well-Known Member

    Glad I found this thread, my immune system is strong and healthy, in spite of OA issues and FM pain. Things could be a lot worse without this antioxidant. jam