Grape Seed Extract Health Benefits
There are numerous wonderful health benefits of grape seed extract! The grape seed extract is derived from the seeds of a certain type of red wine grape. It has been used in Europe to treat a wide range of conditions and diseases for thousands of years. So, let’s take a closer look at some of the health benefits of grape seed extract.
The grape seed extract health benefits are mostly derived from the fact that it contains something called oligomeric proanthocyanidins (OPCs), a class of polyphenols. OPC’s are potent anti-oxidants with anti-inflammatory, anti-microbial, and anti-disease properties. The OPCs found in grape seed extract are 50Xs more potent than the antioxidant vitamin E and 20Xs more potent than the antioxidant vitamin C. Therefore, grape seed extract is considered to be a super antioxidant.
1. Reduces Blood Pressure
Grape seed extract is a smooth muscle relaxant in blood vessels. Damaged blood vessels can lead to elevated blood pressure. The antioxidants found in grape seed extract can protect the blood vessels from the damage caused by free radicals. Multiple research studies have shown that it can significantly reduce systolic and diastolic blood pressure in individuals with high blood pressure (hypertension) .
2. Reduces Oxidative Stress
Something called free radicals are naturally produced inside the body. Without any intervention, the free radicals interact with oxygen and cause oxidative stress in the body. This oxidative stress is what leads to premature aging, chronic inflammation, and ultimately a variety of chronic diseases. Grape seed extract contains powerful antioxidants that can counteract and prevent the damage caused by free radicals.
3. Improves Blood Circulation
Among many other things, poor blood circulation is associated with cardiovascular disease, weakened immune response, poor wound healing, and swelling in the arms and legs. Multiple studies have shown that grape seed extract can help improve venous insufficiencies that can cause edema and swelling. Therefore, grape seed extract can help to improve wound healing after surgery while reducing blood clots and swelling.
4. Reduces Blood Sugar Levels
Another one of the health benefits of grape seed extract is that grape seed extract can reduce elevated blood sugar levels after eating a meal. Research shows that it acts as an alpha-glucosidase inhibitor. Alpha-glucosidase inhibitors (AGIs) are a group of antidiabetic drugs used to manage type 2 diabetes. After eating a meal, the grape seed extract can hinder the uptake of sugar from the intestinal track thereby reducing blood sugar levels. Research also shows that it can help with eye disease related to diabetes.
5. Inhibits the Breakdown of Collagen
An additional one of the health benefits of grape seed extract is that it inhibits the breakdown of collagen. Collagen is responsible for maintaining many essential structures inside and outside the body. In the cardiovascular system, collagen helps to maintain the health of the blood vessels themselves. Collagen is also responsible for maintaining healthy hair, nails, teeth, bone, skin, and joints. Therefore, grape seed extract can help to improve blood vessel health, enhance wound healing after surgery, reduce varicose veins, and act as an anti-aging supplement while reducing joint pain and improving bone and joint health.
6. Improves Brain Health/Function
The super antioxidants found in grape seed extract also protects the brain against neurodegenerative diseases. The same free radicals mentioned earlier are associated with the formation of amyloid plaques in the brain that leads to things like Alzheimer’s disease.
7. Improves Kidney Function
Kidney function often declines in persons with a long history of high blood pressure and/or diabetes. Research has shown that this potent antioxidant improves kidney function in people with chronic kidney disease .
Grape seed extract is a very powerful antioxidant. Therefore, grape seed extract can effectively help to improve and prevent a large range of conditions. Without intervention by antioxidants, these ailments will otherwise naturally occur based upon our diet, genetics, and environmental factors. This concludes the health benefits of grape seed extract.