Known for its powerful antioxidant content, Grape Seed Extract has been studied extensively as a supplement that promotes gut and skin health. In this blog post, we'll dive into the details of how the remarkable properties of Grape Seed Extract can help you achieve optimal health from the inside out.
A bunch of benefits
We carefully select the most effective, pure, natural ingredients for impactful results. The grape seed extract included in our Ultimate 2.0 Marine and Ultimate 2.0 Vegan formula is a great example. Derived from the tiny-but-mighty seeds of New Zealand grapes, this ingredient contains potent antioxidants to support microcirculation and nutrient delivery deep into the skin. Now, new research has uncovered that grape seed extract may also help reduce premenstrual swelling and act as a pre-biotic to improve gut health.
Grape seed extract is high in antioxidants
Grape seed extract efficiently removes free radicals that cause cell damage. This is often a job for Vitamin E, but with the presence of grape seed extract performing this role, Vitamin E is directed to help other important functions in the body such as immunity and healthy cell function.
It’s the high concentration of polyphenols in grape seed that make it an antioxidant superpower. Polyphenols are produced by plants to protect themselves from environmental stressors such as UV, predators and parasites. When these polyphenols are consumed by humans, they provide many physiological benefits.
The grape seed extract we use in our Ultimate 2.0 Marine and Ultimate 2.0 Vegan skin + gut wellness elixirs contain an abundance of oligomeric proanthocyanins (OPCs): potent antioxidant compounds. Sustainably grown and cold processed to ensure maximum potency, our extract has been shown in lab tests to deliver up to six times greater free radical scavenging capacity than others in the market.
Grape seed extract supports microcirculation and nutrient delivery to the skin
Clinical research has shown that grape seed extract has outstanding benefits for the cardiovascular system, offering protective effects and supporting the health of blood vessels.
As a potent free radical scavenger, grape seed extract can also support endothelial function (endothelial cells line the blood and lymphatic vessels), improve capillary strength and microcirculation.
Healthy blood vessels enable effective microcirculation, which allows nutrients to pass freely through the gut wall, into the bloodstream and into to the skin. For OPTY.NC, this is essential because our formula contains valuable skin nutrients that rely on good microcirculation for delivery to the deeper dermal layers where they are utilised for healthy, beautiful skin.
Extensive research has also demonstrated the multiple benefits of grape seed extract on the immune and integumentary systems (consisting of the skin, hair, nails, and exocrine glands). These combine to ensure optimal nutrition delivery to tissues, removal of cellular waste and enhanced protection from free radical damage.
Grape seed extract can improve collagen production and help improve UV damage
Due to its antioxidant properties, grape seed extract can also directly impact on collagen – strengthening the collagen matrix, improving collagen cross linking, and inhibiting degradation of collagen and elastin in the skin.
Animal studies have shown grape seed can improve wound healing and reduce photo damage after sun exposure. Studies have also demonstrated its ability to bolster the skin’s natural defense against UVA/UVB radiation. Grape seed extract was also shown in a small human trial to reduce hyperpigmentation caused by chloasma.
Grape seed extract can help reduce premenstrual swelling
Several studies have shown that through it strengthening effect on blood vessels, grape seed extract may help ease fluid retention (including that accompanying premenstrual syndrome), capillary resistance and venous insufficiency. This can help reduce itching, swelling and pain in the lower limbs.
A study looked at the effects of grape seed extract on women aged 18–50 years with oedema (swelling) from premenstrual syndrome. These participants took grape seed daily and experienced improvement in symptoms such as swelling, weight gain and pelvic pain.
One large study involving 4,729 participants with peripheral venous insufficiency due to hormone replacement therapy (HRT) showed that grape seed extract decreased the sensation of heaviness in the legs in just over half the participants in 45 days, while 89.4 per cent of participants experienced an improvement in 90 days.
Another study of 24 participants with non-complicated chronic venous insufficiency found that over 80 per cent of participants taking OPCs reported lessened or no symptoms after 10 days.
Grape seed extract for gut health
OPCs go to work in the gut as soon as they are ingested – reducing oxidation of food particles and minimising production of toxic metabolites in the digestive system.
As large molecules, OPCs need to be broken down by the gut microbiome in order to cross the gut wall and enter the bloodstream. New research shows this interaction between the gut microbiome and OPCs may also act as a prebiotic, improving gut microbiome composition.
While the research is in its infancy, one in-vitro study showed that OPCs enhanced the growth of friendly Bifidobacterium and Lactobacillus species in the gut. The same effect has been shown in pigs fed grape seed extract. The findings were associated with improved colon health.
The unique benefits of our grape seed extract
We sustainably source our grape seed extract from the Marlborough wine growing region around Blenheim on New Zealand’s South Island, ensuring that sustainable farming and land practices are utilised during ongoing management of the land and minimal use of fertilisers, pesticides and herbicides. New Zealand grapes have higher levels of polyphenol phytonutrients, owing to the higher amounts of UV the fruits are exposed to.
Our sustainably grown seeds are extracted from the fruit within 12 hours of harvest, then immediately processed using no chemical solvents (often used to produce grape seed extracts – resulting in the loss of many active phytonutrients known to be great for microcirculation and the skin). The 100 per cent water, low-temperature process extracts a broad range of phenolic antioxidant compounds and preserves the beneficial phytonutrients.
Numerous grape seed extracts have been compared and it has been shown that the antioxidant potential of the broad-spectrum water extract grape seeds from New Zealand have much higher antioxidant activity.
The Inside Scoop
Ready to improve your wellbeing with the power of grape seed extract? Discover the multi-benefits of our award-winning Ultimate 2.0 Marine and Ultimate 2.0 Vegan that incorporate this key ingredient. Grape seed extract is just one of the many natural, highly-effective ingredients in our gut and skin health-promoting formula.