I enjoy drinking a nice glass of red wine with my grass-fed steak dinner. And the health benefits are an added bonus!
But, it turns out the seeds from red grapes have even more health benefits than wine.
These seeds – the same ones my brothers, sister, and I used to spit out at each other whenever we ate grapes – contain disease fighters so potent I call them super-antioxidants.
In fact, a recent study from the National Institutes of Health backs up what I’ve been telling my patients for years…
Grape seed extract’s antioxidant capacity can reduce the inflammatory process at the root of today’s chronic diseases.
But, its regenerative benefits go even further…
A breakthrough study published in the journal Nature Metabolism recently revealed grape seed extract successfully prolonged the lifespan of old mice by 9%.1
Researchers focused on a phenomenon known as cellular senescence – the process during which your cells lose function as your body ages. Specialized compounds called senolytics destroy these rogue cells, allowing the body to repair the damage.
In the breakthrough study, researchers discovered a previously unidentified senolytic derived from a compound in grape seed extract called procyanidin C1, or PCC1.
This newly discovered senolytic induces a type of programmed cell death called apoptosis in senescent cells while leaving healthy cells unharmed.
In the new study, the mice were exposed to doses of radiation that caused them to develop abnormal features such as significant amounts of gray hair. They also lost muscle mass and suffered damage to their kidneys, livers, and lungs.
But once the compound in the grape seed extract was introduced, this damage was reversed.
According to the study authors, there’s no reason to believe that this compound can’t do the same for human beings.
It’s just one more advantage to add to a growing list of benefits we get from these seeds. To date, they’ve been proven to:
- Dramatically reduce the risk of prostate cancer2
- Improve blood sugar and insulin sensitivity3
- Slow brain aging and increase cognitive function4
- Boost HDL cholesterol and lower blood pressure5
- Restore cardiovascular health6
- Fight infections and kill germs7
Make Grape Seed Extract Part of Your Life
There are two distinct ways to add the seeds of grapes to your diet. Grapeseed extract comes from the small seeds (and occasionally the skins) of red grapes – the same kind that is pressed to make wine. Grapeseed oil comes from the same seeds – but after the juice is pressed.
- Supplement With Grape Seed Extract: I recommend taking 250 mg of grape seed extract twice per day. It’s available in capsules, tablets, or in liquid form. Look for products that are standardized to 40 to 80% proanthocyanidin polyphenols.
- Cook with Grapeseed oil: Grapeseed oil is a joy to cook with. It smokes at a much higher temperature than olive oil – which means you can sauté and pan-sear your favorite meats, fish, and vegetables without burning anything. You can also rub fish or chicken with the oil before baking.
To Your Good Health,
Al Sears, MD, CNS
1. Xu Q, et al. “The flavonoid procyanidin c1 has chemotherapeutic activity and increases lifespan in mice.” Nat Metab. 2021 Dec 6. doi: 10.1038/s42255-021-00491-8. Online ahead of print.
2. “Garavaglia J, et al. “Grape seed oil compounds: biological and chemical actions for health.” Nutr Metab Insights. 2016 Aug 16;9:59-64.
3. Sapwarobol S, et al. “Postprandial blood glucose response to grape seed extract in healthy participants: A pilot study.” Pharmacogn Mag. 2012 Jul-Sep; 8(31): 192–196.
4. Bell L, et al. “Grape seed polyphenol extract and cognitive function in healthy young adults: a randomised, placebo-controlled, parallel-groups acute-on-chronic trial.” Nutr Neurosci. 2020 Jan 16;1-10.
5. Grohmann T, et al. “Efficacy of bilberry and grape seed extract supplement interventions to improve glucose and cholesterol metabolism and blood pressure in different populations-a systematic review of the literature.” Nutrients. 2021 May 17;13(5):1692.
6. Feringa H, et al. “The effect of grape seed extract on cardiovascular risk markers: a meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials. J Am Diet Assoc. 2011. Aug;111(8):1173-81.
7. Su X, Dsouza D. “Grape seed extract for control of human enteric viruses.” Appl Environ Microbiol. 2011 Jun; 77(12): 3982–3987.