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Grape Seed Extract

Benefits of grape seed extract: a scientific review

Grape seed extract, or GSE, comes from ground-up grape seeds and contains tannins and procyanidins, which are considered beneficial for the circulatory system and seem to have an anti-estrogenic effect.

Recommended dosage and intake of grape seed extract

If you are using grape seed extract for heart conditions, the recommended dose is between 150-300mg of GSE daily, and the human studies indicate that it may be better to consume grape seed extract on an empty stomach, in order to stimulate the absorption of procyanidins. You can find GSE in forms of tablets, capsules or as liquid extract.

Benefits and effects of GSE

One of the main concerns when it comes to beneficial potential of GSE is the problem of the body’s ability to absorb procyanidins in that way that their full potency is exploited, since the human studies show poor bioavailability of GSE. In vitro studies showed much more impressive results, especially when it comes to the anti-inflammatory and estrogen suppressant qualities of GSE.

  • Cardiovascular Health

 Human studies have proven that the effect of grape seed extract on the human body is only viable when it comes to increase in the blood flow, which appears to be consistent with the ingestion of high doses of procyanidins. Research further indicated that GSE has some potential for blood pressure stabilization, but results were still inconclusive. Studies that focused on the effects of GSE intake on levels of lipoproteins, cholesterol and triglycerides, haven’t supported the claim that GSE lowers these markers.

  • Hormones

 When it comes to the studies concerning the effects of GSE on estrogen and testosterone levels, there haven’t been any scientific studies that are supported by clinical trials. In case of animal studies, grape seed extract administered in high doses to rats had efficacy in inhibiting aromatase activity and aromatase transcription. The effect of GSE as an aromatase inhibitor in human consumption has yet to be researched.  

  • Neurology

Although thorough research on human subjects still needs to be done, the results of in vitro and animal studies on defatted grape seeds looks promising when it comes to treatment of Alzheimer’s disease. Mice with cognitive defects similar to the ones characteristic for Alzheimer’s were injected high doses of GSE every day, and it showed improvement in cognitive function after only five months of treatments. Both in vivo and in vitro studies indicate that high levels of grape seed extract could reduce the accumulation of beta-amyloid pigmentation.

 

Even though grape seed extract contains procyanidins, the main concern remains with the bioavailability, since the human studies show different results than studies done on animals or in vitro. However, it still remains to be seen how GSE can affect colon and the intestines, since the absorption is not needed in that particular case.

Grape seed extract has the potential to be beneficial in many ways, but more human studies need to be done in order to fully understand the possibilities of its impact on the human body.

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