Grape Seed Extract May Help Lower Blood Pressure
A recent study suggests that grape seed extract may lower systolic blood pressure in middle aged adults with pre-hypertension by as much as 5.6%.
Participants in the study included 29 middle aged adults with pre-hypertension who were given a juice containing 300 mg per day of grape seed extract or a placebo twice daily for six weeks. The researchers monitored their blood pressure and collected blood samples during the intervention period and at four weeks after the intervention period.
The researchers found that grape seed extract consumption was associated with a 5.6% reduction in systolic blood pressure after six weeks. They also noted a reduction in diastolic blood pressure but it was not significantly different from the reduction seen in the placebo group.
Blood pressure returned to baseline four weeks after the participants stopped taking the grape seed extract. The participants with the highest blood pressure at the onset of the study saw the largest benefit from the grape seed extract.
Researchers from the Illinois Institute of Technology in Chicago conducted the study. It was published online ahead of print on November 16, 2015, in the British Journal of Nutrition.
Grape seed extract is high in polyphenols, powerful antioxidants that fight free radicals in the body that can lead to many common diseases. Previous studies have linked polyphenol intake with a variety of health benefits, including helping with weight management, fighting certain cancers, and reducing inflammation.
Polyphenols can be found naturally in many foods, including honey, a variety of fruits and vegetables, red wine, chocolate, tea, certain oils and many types of grain.