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Grapes in their many forms have been used by humans for centuries as a food, of course, but also in the form of medicinal wines to help treat various ailments and diseases. Grapes are a concentrated source of nutrients, and these nutrients are found throughout the fruit, in the seeds and skin as well as the juice. Grape seed extract supplements are made from the seeds of the same types of grapes used for making wine.
The most-studied nutrients in grapes are antioxidants; grapes contain a wide-range of antioxidants such as resveratrol, proanthocyanidins, tannins and polyphenols.
Grape seed extracts are used for antioxidant support in general and vascular health more specifically. Poor circulation, easy bruising and poor skin tone are all situations in which grape seed extracts have been used.Research shows that grape seed extract is helpful in the prevention of some types of heart disease, such as atherosclerosis.1 Grape seed antioxidants also help prevent the harmful oxidation of LDL cholesterol.2,3
Grape seed extracts can be used as directed. Consult your physician before using grape seed extracts if you're taking any medications. Look for supplements that contain at least 95% PCOs. Grape seed extract is available in tablet, liquid or capsule form.
Grape seed extract itself is generally safe and there are no known side effects. However, grape seed extract may interact with other medications or supplements, so it is important to talk to your doctor before using grape seed extract. Pregnant/nursing women and children should not use grape seed extract as the supplement has not been proven safe for use in these populations.
1. Biofactors. 2004;21(1-4):197-201.
2. Biofactors. 2004;21(1-4):197-201.
3. Free Radic Res. 2003 May;37(5):573-84.