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Grape Seed

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Herbal Alternative Health

Grape Seed

The medicinal herb Grape Seed Extract as an alternative herbal remedy - The grape seeds used to produce this extract are generally obtained from wine manufacturers.

What Grape seed extract Is Used For

  • Grape seed extract is used as an herbal remedy for conditions related to the heart and blood vessels, such as atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries), high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and poor circulation.
  • Other reasons for the use of grape seed extract include complications related to diabetes, such as nerve and eye damage; vision problems, such as macular degeneration (which can cause blindness); and swelling after an injury or surgery.
  • Grape seed extract is also used for cancer prevention and wound healing.

How Grape seed extract Is Used

  • Grape seed extract is prepared from the seed of grapes. It is available in capsule and tablet forms.
Herbal remedies in zamboanga.PNG

What the Science Says about Grape seed extract

  • Laboratory studies have shown that grape seed contains antioxidants-substances that prevent cell damage caused by free radicals, which are highly reactive molecules that can damage cell function. However, it is still unclear how grape seed might affect human health.
  • Grape seed extracts have shown some beneficial antioxidant effects in preliminary clinical trials. However, few trials have looked at specific diseases or conditions, and little scientific evidence is available.
  • A study funded by the National Cancer Institute (NCI) found that grape seed extract did not reduce the hardening of breast tissue that can occur after radiation therapy for breast cancer.
  • NCI is also funding studies evaluating whether grape seed extract is effective in preventing breast and prostate cancers.
  • NCCAM is studying whether the action of grape seed extract and its components may benefit the heart or have protective effects in the brain.

Side Effects and Cautions of Grape seed extract

  • Grape seed extract is generally well tolerated when taken by mouth. It has been used safely for up to 8 weeks in clinical trials.
  • Side effects that have been reported most often include headache; a dry, itchy scalp; dizziness; and nausea.
  • The interactions between grape seed extract and medicines or other supplements have not been carefully studied.
  • Tell your health care providers about any complementary and alternative practices you use. Give them a full picture of what you do to manage your health. This will help ensure coordinated and safe care.

News About Grape Seed

3 Uses For Grape Seed Oil In Your Beauty Routine, Including As The Key To Finally Having Waist-Length Hair

By Kristin Collins Jackson

Let me guess — your hair has been shoulder-length for the past 10 years, and even though you’ve grown accustomed to having your medium-length hair styles, you just aren’t willing to give up on your dream of naturally having Khaleesi-length locks. Instead of resorting to itchy extensions and pricey volumizing products, may I suggest grape seed oil?

One of my natural beauty besties, grape seed oil is made by cold-pressing grape seeds after it’s been used to make wine. Not only does it make an excellent oil for salads, it also acts as an odorless sealant that locks in moisture — which makes it a miracle worker for your hair. Like coconut oil, grape seed oil contains antioxidants and linoleic acid — an Omega-6 fatty acid that’s essential for healthy skin and cell membranes.

If you have thin hair and are therefore understandably wary of dumping greasy oils onto your strands, grape seed will probably surprise you. It's way more lightweight than olive or castor oils, so as long as you apply it mainly to the ends of your hair, it won't make you look like you went one day too long without washing.

Plus, grape seed oil isn't just for healthy hair — here are three of my favorite ways to use this natural beauty wonder.


Treat Spider Veins

Standard stuff: you've been doing a grueling boot camp all winter and as soon as the temperature rises above 60 degrees, you are ready to put on those booty shorts from high school just to prove you still can. But...what's this? Spider veins?!

Fill up a bottle with grape seed oil and lather your bod up with this essential oil after you get out of the shower and before bed. The antioxidants in grape seeds help strengthen your veins, which prevents them from swelling and breaking and causing spidery marks. Bonus tip: Grape seed oil absorbs best on damp skin. Heat Protector

Before you get ready to turn up the heat, you need to protect your hair to avoid split ends and major frizzies. For finer locks, try filling up a spray bottle with 3 parts grape seed oil and 1 part water, or ditch the water and just use straight up oil on coarser hair. Smooth your concoction on to small sections of your hair before you apply heat. You'll be impressed with how moisturized and healthy — not fried — your hair looks!

Eliminate Dark Circles

Dark circles under your eyes can be unsightly. They make us look older, tired, and personally? I'm not trying to put an ice-cold spoon on my eye lids every morning for 15 minutes. According to Wellness Today, gently placing grape seed oil under the delicate skin beneath your eyes twice daily can eliminate unpleasant dark circles. I've been doing it for a few weeks and, swear to Beyonce, I'm looking fresher every day.



‘Health Superstar’: Grape seed extract for health and beauty

(BusinessMirror)

Grape Seed Extract is underrated in the beauty industry. Little did people know that it’s rich in amazing health benefits.

Commonly referred to as GSE, it contains a single yet powerful ingredient: OPCs (oligomeric procyanidins)—a type of polyphenol that is sought for its antioxidant properties.

OPCs are known in the medicinal world as a ‘superstar’ for the several functions it holds for the human body. It does not only have antioxidant properties but it’s also responsible for the treatment of a number of conditions, according to reported findings.

In the past, these seeds were tagged worthless by-product of wine production that usually just go to waste. Come to realize, they are extremely valuable when extracted. It’s composed of a complex mixture of flavonoids, vitamin E, linoleic acid and phenolic procyanidins.

Proanthocyanidins and catechins, found in GSE, are believed to be 20 times greater than vitamin E and 50 times greater than vitamin C.

The skin is not the only target of GSE. It also works in maintaining the body’s wellness by improving flexibility in joints, arteries and body tissues.

In the Philippines, Bargn Pharmaceuticals banks on the health and beauty benefits of GSE. Understanding and believing in the goodness of GSE, Bargn founders Nino Bautista and John Redentor Gatus Jr. manufactured CosmoSkin GSE, which according to Bautista provides a definitive solution to a common skin ailment called melasma.

“Melasma is a condition that creates dark patches of skin usually found on the upper cheek, nose, lips, upper lip, and forehead, and it affects almost 90 percent of women all over the world and this condition is aggravated by sun exposure, and therefore women who live active, outdoorsy lifestyles are more likely to produce more dark pigments than others. With CosmoSkin GSE, you don’t have to worry about pigmentation because grape seed extract is best in addressing skin issues such as melasma.”

Bautista assured its patrons his company only uses quality raw materials to guarantee efficacy and safety of the products.

Bargn is at the forefront of innovation in the health and wellness industry, creating products that address a myriad of needs, which include cosmeceuticals, nutraceuticals, vitamins, pharmaceuticals and cosmetics. The company was established by in 2006.

For more information like CosmoSkin Fan Page on Facebook, follow @cosmoskin on Twitter and Instagram or visit www.cosmo-skin.com.

To better understand GSE, here are the benefits of this so-called ‘health superstar’ in our health and beauty.

Radical Scavenging

The polyphenol properties are attested to in neutralizing singlet oxygen radicals responsible for bringing inflammations into the body. It’s rich in vitamin C that acts as a shield against bacteria, viruses and other chronic illnesses.

Prevents Clogging of Arteries

The flavonoids (vitamin E, linoleic acid, and phenolic procyanidins) present inside GSE reduces risks of heart disease because they are believed to decrease the number of bad cholesterol in your body.

Controls Blood Pressure

The extract found in grape seeds sends relaxation to the arteries and blood vessels, thereby balancing the blood pressure.

Research shows that it also helps dilate blood vessels and lower blood pressure for those people with metabolic syndrome (most of whom also had prehypertension).

Diabetes-friendly

GSE, accompanied by exercise, can improve lipid profile, weight loss, blood pressure and other diabetic complications. Experts say that this intake is a therapeutical way combat diabetes.

Oral Health

It also plays a beneficial role in our oral health.

GSE solution fights demineralization and release more remineralization of cavities. This result to an effective cure to stop or reverse early tooth decay.

Bone Strength

Adding GSE to your daily diet will nourish your bone with the calcium it needs.

Based on the Journal of Musculoskeletal & Neuronal Interactions, the extract has a “beneficial effect on bone formation and bone strength for the treatment of bone debility caused by a low level of calcium.”

Anti-aging

Aside from the health benefits above-mentioned, there are still more to what GSE can do.

It contributes to the improvement of skin especially to those already in age whose skin tend to wrinkle. The extract contains light, small molecules that are absorbable. GSE acts as an alpha hydroxy acid that’s why some skincare products have it as an ingredient also due to its exfoliating properties.

Maintains Skin Elasticity

The polyphenols are proven to be excellent binders of collagen fibers for the enhancing of connective tissues, and overall maintaining the elasticity of your skin.

Wound healing

Treating wounds can be speeded up with GSE. According to researchers, there’s evidence of a “feasible and productive approach” in the extract to support dermal wound healing.

This also helps the cells to retain moisture for a fresher appearance.Protects from Sun Burn and Damage

When GSE is applied to skin, prior to UV light exposure, the compounds may produce a sunscreen effect that reduce redness and damage to cells.

Improves Skin Appearance

The oil from grape seeds gives a rich, moisturizing and gentle touch proven to hyrdrate the skin and deliver vitamins in the membranes of skin cells that help cling on moisture.

It’s an effective skin exfoliant because it kills the top layer of dead cells, revealing the smoother, healthier skin underneath.

Anti-bacterial and Anti-fungal

Because GSE has the compound called reservatol, it therefore has anti-inflammatory properties responsible for treating dermatitis, infections, cuts, and excessive exposure to the sun’s rays.

Overall, the seed we often throw away from our mouth when eating grapes shouldn’t be underestimated nor ignored now. It can perform magic once it gets extracted into a nutritious juice or supplement.

The GSE is a multi-tasker that caters to both our inner health and physical features. There shouldn’t be surprise when the demand for it gets high in the market.

Watch out for this proclaimed ‘health superstar.’



7 Grapefruit Seed Extract Uses, Plus Dangers to Watch Out For

(UHN Staff)

While human studies are generally lacking, many natural health practitioners and patients report grapefruit seed extract's ability to help fight infections when used topically or taken internally.

Grapefruit seed extract uses are numerous due to its action as a highly concentrated, natural general antimicrobial and antioxidant. Grapefruit seed extract benefits include killing all kinds of infectious microbes—bacterial, viral, and fungal—at least in test tube and animal studies.

What’s in Grapefruit Seed Extract?

The main compounds in grapefruit seeds thought to be responsible for its ability to kill infectious agents are chemical compounds (polyphenols) known as limonoids and naringenin.

These intensely powerful compounds act as antimicrobials and antioxidants, not only killing dangerous microbes but protecting the body’s tissues against the excessive production of reactive oxygen species which occurs when these pathogens infect the tissues.

A grapefruit seed extract dosage may come in a number of different delivery forms and concentrations. Liquids and/or capsules can be used whether the infection is on the skin; in the ears, nose, or mouth; or in the gastrointestinal tract. Grapefruit seed extract is also used as a preservative and antimicrobial in natural personal care products as well as by the food industry for food preservation.

Warnings About Grapefruit Seed Extract

Grapefruit juice and possibly other grapefruit products, including grapefruit seed extract, are known to interact with certain drugs and may lead to serious adverse reactions. Grapefruit inhibits certain enzyme systems within the body most often involved in drug metabolism. This increases blood concentrations of the drugs concerned, creating a risk of overdose and dose-dependent adverse effects. Grapefruit seed extract can sometimes cause skin irritation when used topically. The liquid grapefruit seed concentrates should always be diluted; never use full strength and avoid contact with eyes or other sensitive areas.

Also, in a report published in 2012, investigators from the Austin, Texas-based American Botanical Council found that many grapefruit seed extract products on the market today contain synthetic chemicals that aren’t listed on their labels. They report that any antimicrobial activities in grapefruit seed extract products is likely due to these synthetic additives, and not the grapefruit seed extract itself. Since the actual amount of these unlisted chemicals could vary widely and are unapproved compounds for internal use, some natural health practitioners recommend not taking GSE health products internally. If you’re considering the use of grapefruit seed extract in treatment of a chronic condition, make sure to consult your physician.

How to Take Grapefruit Seed Extract Internally to Fight Infections

Grapefruit seed extract concentrated liquid and capsules should not be taken by children except under a doctor’s supervision. Adults can mix 10 drops of the liquid concentrate into a glass of water or juice (5 oz. or more) and drink, 1-3 times daily, with or without meals. Note that grapefruit seed extract is extremely bitter. To avoid the bitter taste, adults may also take one to two 250 mg capsules one to two times daily with or without meals.

Grapefruit seed extract can deplete normal flora (healthy “good” bacteria) in the gut when taken long-term. If you plan to take GSE for 3 days or more, it’s important to consume a probiotic supplement two hours before taking your GSE dose.

GSE Benefits Include Killing Candida and Treating Digestive Symptoms

Grapefruit seed extract is perhaps best known for its ability to treat digestive disturbances and kill pathogens, especially fungal pathogens like Candida albicans, in the gastrointestinal tract. One preliminary human trial investigated the effectiveness of grapefruit seed extract in people with symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and eczema. Subjects received either 2 drops of a 0.5% liquid concentrate of grapefruit seed extract twice a day or 150 mg of encapsulated grapefruit seed extract (ParaMicrocidin®) three times a day.

After a month, all of the subjects taking capsules experienced significant improvements in constipation, flatulence, and abdominal discomfort, as well as night rest, while 20% of the subjects taking the liquid experienced significant improvements in their IBS symptoms. Results found that there were no major grapefruit seed extract side effects. The fact that these patients’ digestive symptoms improved with grapefruit seed extract suggests that they actually had an infection in the gastrointestinal tract that was causing their symptoms rather than IBS. And in fact, the researchers tested the extract against different intestinal pathogens and found it was most effective against Candida species, a type of fungal infection, and some types of parasites.

Grapefruit Seed Extract Uses

Among the multiple uses for grapefruit seed extract:

• Throat gargle (for colds and sore throats)
• Mouth wash (for gums and dental health)
• Nasal/sinus wash (for sinus infections and colds)
• Ear drops
• Digestive disturbances (including candida and traveler’s diarrhea)
• Skin wounds
• Fruit and veggie wash

In addition to grapefruit seed oil, liquid extracts and capsules, some companies, like Nutribiotics, make throat sprays, nasal sprays, ear drops, mouthwashes and gargles, toothpastes, shower gels, wound disinfectant sprays, and other personal care products containing grapefruit seed extract and other ingredients. Follow the label instructions for use.


The Benefits of Grape Seed Extract

By Cathy Wong, ND (Reviewed by a board-certified physician)

Grape seed extract (Vitis vinifera) is a natural substance available in capsule and tablet form. It is usually sourced from grape seeds provided by wine manufacturers.

Uses for Grape Seed Extract

Since ancient Greece, various parts of the grape have been used for medicinal purposes. In alternative medicine, grape seed extract is purported to help with the following conditions:

• high blood pressure
• high cholesterol
• atherosclerosis
• poor circulation
• complications due to diabetes
• constipation
• gastrointestinal disorders
• age-related macular degeneration

Proponents claim that grape seed extract can help protect against cancer. In laboratory studies, scientists have demonstrated that grape seed can help fight free radicals (chemical by-products known to cause DNA damage associated with cancer). However, it is still unclear whether grape seed can lower cancer risk in humans.

Health Benefits of Grape Seed Extract

Although scientific support for the benefits of grape seed extract is limited.

1) Diabetes-Related Complications

In a 2009 study of 32 type 2 diabetes patients at high cardiovascular risk, participants took 600 mg of grape seed extract or a placebo every day for four weeks. Study results showed that grape seed extract significantly improved markers of inflammation and glycemia. The study's authors suggest that grape seed extract may have a therapeutic role in decreasing cardiovascular risk.


2) High Blood Pressure

In a 2009 study of subjects with metabolic syndrome, researchers found that four weeks of treatment with grape seed extract lowered both systolic and diastolic blood pressure.

Metabolic syndrome is marked by a cluster of health problems (including excess belly fat, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, insulin resistance, and inflammation) known to raise your risk of heart disease and type 2 diabetes.

3) Alzheimer's Disease

Grape seed extract may help delay the development of Alzheimer's disease, according to an animal study published in 2009. In tests on mice, scientists discovered that grape seed extract eased inflammation and prevented the accumulation of substances known to form the brain plaques associated with Alzheimer's disease.

Caveats

Grape seed extract is generally well-tolerated when taken by mouth however it may cause adverse effects such as headache, dry or itchy scalp, dizziness, and nausea.

Supplements haven't been tested for safety and due to the fact that dietary supplements are largely unregulated, the content of some products may differ from what is specified on the product label. Also keep in mind that the safety of supplements in pregnant women, nursing mothers, children, and those with medical conditions or who are taking medications has not been established. You can get additional tips on using supplements here. Using Grape Seed Extract for Health

Due to the lack of supporting research, it's too soon to recommend grape seed extract for any health purpose. If you considering using it, talk with your primary care provider first.

Self-treating a condition and avoiding or delaying standard care may have serious consequences.


Grape-based compounds kill colon cancer stem cells in mice

By Penn State

Compounds from grapes may kill colon cancer stem cells both in a petri dish and in mice, according to a team of researchers.

The compounds -- resveratrol -- which are found in grape skins and seeds, could also eventually lead to treatments to help prevent colon cancer, said Jairam K.P. Vanamala, associate professor of food sciences, Penn State. Colorectal cancer is the second leading cause of cancer-related deaths in the U.S., according to the American Cancer Society.

"The combination of resveratrol and grape seed extract is very effective at killing colon cancer cells," said Vanamala, who is also a faculty member at the Penn State Hershey Cancer Institute. "And what we're learning is the combination of these compounds is not toxic to healthy cells."

The researchers, who reported their findings in a recent issue of BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine, suggest that the findings could pave the way for clinical testing of the compounds on human colon cancer, which is the second most common cancer in women and the third in men. If successful, the compounds could then be used in a pill to help prevent colon cancer and lessen the recurrence of the disease in colon cancer survivors.

"We are particularly interested in targeting stem cells because, according to cancer stem-cell theory, cancerous tumors are driven by cancer stem cells," said Vanamala. "Cancer stem cells are capable of self-renewal, cellular differentiation and maintain their stem cell-like characteristics even after invasion and metastasis."

When taken separately in low doses, resveratrol and grape seed extract are not as effective against cancer stem-cell suppression as when they are combined together, according to the researchers.

The combined effect of grape seed extract and resveratrol may offer clues as to why cultures with a plant-based diet tend to have lower colon cancer rates, said Vanamala. These diets may naturally be providing a shotgun approach to cancer prevention by using a wide variety of beneficial compounds to target multiple pathways that cancer stem cells use to survive.

"This also connects well with a plant-based diet that is structured so that the person is getting a little bit of different types of plants, of different parts of the plant and different colors of the plant," said Vanamala. "This seems to be beneficial for not only promoting bacterial diversity, but also preventing chronic diseases and eliminating the colon cancer stem cells."

If successful in human trials, the compounds could be taken in low doses using currently available supplements for grape seed extract and resveratrol, which are also found in wine.

However, he added that there is still more work to do to understand the mechanism behind the anti-cancer properties of the grape extract, as well as other colorful fruits and vegetables. Further research would be aimed at finding specific anti-cancer compounds and better understanding how those compounds work synergistically to create more effective colon-cancer prevention and treatment strategies.

For the animal study, the researchers separated 52 mice with colon cancer tumors into three groups, including a control group and groups that were fed either the grape compounds or sulindac, an anti-inflammatory drug, which was chosen because a previous study showed it significantly reduced the number of tumors in humans.

The incidence of tumors was suppressed in the mice consuming the grape compounds alone by 50 percent, similar to the rate in the group consuming the diet with sulindac.


8 New Healthy Oils to Cook With

By Matthew Kadey, R.D.

If you already pan-roast your chicken in canola oil and adorn your salad greens with Italian olive oil, way to go. But just like your workout routine, when it comes to culinary oils, you should shoot for variety. By using an assortment of oils in your kitchen, you’ll be exposed to a wider range of healthy fats and disease-fighting nutrients and antioxidants.

It’s not as simple as drizzling a new bottle into the pan the next time you stir-fry, though. Certain oils are better for sautéing or baking, while others should be used exclusively for dressings and dips. Here’s the lowdown on what to add to your kitchen (store them in a cool, dark place such as a pantry cupboard away from the oven to prolong shelf life) and how to use each to keep your body a well-oiled machine.

Avocado Oil

Buttery avocado oil is chockablock in monounsaturated fat, the kind considered to be heart-healthy because of its powers to improve cholesterol numbers. This über fruit oil also supplies lutein, an antioxidant that improves eye health, and the white coats at Ohio State University determined that the oil can goose salad’s potency by improving the absorption of fat-soluble antioxidants such as beta-carotene present in vegetables.

Best uses: With what is considered to be highest smoke point of any plant oil—about 520 degrees—ultra-versatile avocado oil can be used for all your high-heat cooking needs such as grilling and pan-roasting. It’s also stellar when added to salad dressings, as a garnish for soups like gazpacho, or drizzled over homemade pizza, crusty bread, or even slices of watermelon.

Hemp Oil

Greener than Al Gore, this earthy-tasting oil pressed from hemp seeds abounds in essential fatty acids such as omega-3 alpha-linolenic acid, which may reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes, according to studies. Hemp oil also delivers gamma linolenic acid, an omega 6 that emerging research says can improve skin health by reducing conditions like roughness and dryness. Though hemp may bring to mind peace, love, and tie-dyes, the variety of hemp grown for food production contains virtually none of the psychoactive ingredient found in marijuana.

Best uses: Hemp oil is too delicate to be heated, so save it for dips, pestos, and dressings—anywhere you would use extra-virgin olive oil.

Hazelnut Oil

Toasty, richly flavored, aromatic hazelnut oil provides vitamin E, a potent antioxidant that appears to keep your mind and hearing sharp. What’s more, nearly 80 percent of the fat in hazelnut oil is the ticker-boosting monounsaturated kind. As with hemp oil, delicate nut oils like hazelnut should be stored in the refrigerator once opened to preserve freshness. Buy only the amount you’ll use within three to six months for peak flavor.

Best uses: Skip the frying pan and use hazelnut oil to gussy-up cooked rice, quinoa, or oatmeal. Whisked with lemon juice, it’s delicious strewn over pasta, roasted vegetables, and steamed greens. Or work it into your chocolate sauces and slip a few drops into your morning cup of joe or bowl of ice cream.

Grapeseed Oil

This byproduct of winemaking has a clean, light flavor and is a good source of both vitamin E and oleic acid, a fat that may help slash stroke risk by up to 73 percent, according to a recent study in the journal Neurology. Further, scientists at the University of California found oleic acid may curb hunger pangs by being converted into an appetite-quelling hormone. Look for expeller-pressed grapeseed oil, meaning it was extracted by crushing the seeds in a mechanical press without the use of harsh chemicals such as hexane.

Best uses: A neutral flavor makes grapeseed oil a jack-of-all-cooking-trades and is especially good if you don’t want to taste the oil in your recipe, such as when preparing kale chips, sautéing onions, or baking sweet potato fries. It emulsifies very well, so use it for making mayonnaise and creamy dressings that won’t separate when chilled. Grapeseed oil can also substitute butter or shortening in most baked good recipes.

Almond Oil

Made by pressing the oil out of ground almond paste, almond oil has a mild nutty flavor and pale yellow hue. It’s plush in monounsaturated fat (like olive and avocado oil), vitamin E, and phytosterols, plant compounds shown to improve cholesterol numbers. Doing double-duty as vanity fare, it’s also lauded as a topical skin moisturizer. Buy all your fruit or nut oils packaged in dark containers to help stymie deterioration from light sources.

Best uses: Add subtle almond nuances to a range of baked goods, including cookies, quick breads, and muffins. Homemade granola goes gourmet when made with almond oil, or whirl up your own nut butter by blending together whole almonds with almond oil in a food processor. Roasted almond oil has a more robust nut flavor, so it can add rich taste to salad dressings, pasta dishes, and soups.

Tea Seed Oil

This up-and-comer hails from China and is made by pressing the seeds of the Camellia sinensis plant—the same one that brings forth your green tea and Earl Grey, but instead of the astringency the drink can sometimes have, tea seed oil has a subtle lemony flavor. While it’s a bit scarce, it’s worth seeking out, as research shows it’s abundant in cholesterol-reducing sterols and unsaturated fatty acids that make your heart happy, and has strong antioxidant activity.

Best uses: Tea seed oil performs great at high temperatures, so use it when preparing Asian-inspired dishes (here’s looking at you, stir-fry) with less worry of smoking yourself out of the kitchen. Its light and smooth flavor won’t cover your food’s taste, so also try it in marinades and dips, or with roasted vegetables.

Red Palm Oil

Poised to give its popular tropical cousin coconut oil a run for its money, this brightly colored oil is laced with antioxidants, including vitamin E and carotenoids such as beta-carotene and alpha-carotene. In the body, beta-carotene can be converted to vitamin A, which is used to promote eye, bone, and immune health. Higher intakes of alpha-carotene, on the other hand, may be protective against mortality from heart disease, according to research out of the University of Maryland School of Medicine. Look for brands that source their red palm oil sustainably, such as taking steps to avoid destroying animal-friendly rainforest for palm plantations.

Best uses: Palm oil is heat-stable, so it's a good choice for your frying pan or as a replacement for butter when baking. Its buttery flavor works well in curries, rice and fish dishes, sauces, and spreads, as well as in smoothies or drizzled over popcorn and roasted potatoes.

California Extra-Virgin Olive Oil

Believe it or not, Italy doesn’t own an olive oil patent. In fact, strict production regulations including outlawing chemical extraction and allowing a very low content of free fatty acids—an indicator of freshness—means extra-virgin olive oils bearing the California Olive Oil Council (COOC) seal have a leg up on many of their European counterparts despite the less-painful sticker price, so it’s never been a better time to practice some gastronomic patriotism.

A big part of the ultra-healthy Mediterranean Diet, EVOO offers a payload of beneficial monounsaturated fat and polyphenol antioxidants to help stamp out disease-provoking free radicals. It’s also one of the few dietary oils to contain vitamin K, which is necessary for proper blood clotting. As if that weren’t enough, a recent study in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism found that people who consumed a Mediterranean diet bolstered with virgin olive oil for two years experienced an increase in osteocalcin, a protein that’s a marker of bone growth. Check out these 5 Mediterranean Diet recipes for tasty and healthy ways to use EVOO.

Best uses: Sliced local tomatoes taste even better dressed with peppery or fruity California olive oil, which can also be rubbed on corn on the cob in place of butter.


7 Reasons You Should Eat Grape Seeds

(Step To health)

Because it’s rich in antioxidants, grape seed extract could help stop the damage to your cells and prevent the development of cancer of the breast, skin, or prostate

Many people who eat grapes on a regular basis make the mistake of throwing out the small grape seeds because their flavor isn’t as nice as that of the fleshy part of the fruit.

The truth is that today we know it’s a waste to miss out on the large quantity of nutrients contained in the seeds.

Many companies in the cosmetics and pharmaceutical industries are using these tiny seeds to produce natural treatments for various diseases.

But it’s also advised to consume them in their raw form because despite their bitter flavor, they could provide your body with important benefits to optimize its function.

For those of you who are still spitting out this important part of your grapes, in today’s article we want to share 7 reasons why you should start eating grape seeds today. They’re amazing!

1. Grape seeds are rich in antioxidants

Grape seeds are rich in compounds known as phenolics, proanthocyanidins, and tococerol whose antioxidant power is able to protect your body from the damage caused by free radicals.

They also pack a significant amount of vitamin C and beta-carotene, which are known to counteract many of the environmental factors that can directly impact your health.

2. They help cleanse the bloodstream

Thanks to their nutrient and antioxidant content, these seeds may also help cleanse your blood by removing the waste products from medicines and other harmful elements that build up in your bloodstream.

Because of this, they’re an appropriate solution for people who are at risk for heart disease because, among other things, they stimulate good circulation and prevent clots from forming.

3. They prevent cancer

Because of their high antioxidant it’s no surprise that these seeds are recommended for fighting breast, skin, and prostate cancers.

Their effects against free radicals help to stop cellular damage that increases your risk of developing this disease.

4. They reduce the effects of tobacco use

Both smokers and second hand smokers benefit from the nutrients in grape seeds to fight the harmful impacts from inhaling toxic compounds.

Thanks to their ability to purify the bloodstream, much of the harmful waste is eliminated and this helps protect your body.

5. Grape seeds are antibacterial and anti-inflammatory

Their antibacterial properties could inhibit microbial growth and prevent and treat various types of infections.

They also have anti-inflammatory effects that can help reduce the severity of disorders like:

• Arthritis
• Dermatitis
• Fluid retention
• Ulcers
• Sinusitis
• Urinary tract infections

6. They prevent premature aging

One of the main benefits of grape seeds comes from their content of OPC antioxidants, which inhibit the activity of malignant cells. This prevents premature aging of the skin and organs, tissues and cells.

Thanks to this, when you consume grape seeds on a regular basis your body stays younger and more wrinkle free, avoiding premature aging of the skin.

7. They protect the lungs

The antibacterial and antihistamine effects of grape seeds fight allergies, strengthening and protecting your lungs to prevent infection and other diseases that can impair their function.

Because they also boost your immune system, they reduce your risk of getting the flu, colds, and other conditions that are associated with the respiratory system.

How should you eat grape seeds?

You can eat grape seeds with the whole grape, if you choose. But there are also natural stores and herbalists who sell grape seed extract or capsules that are intended to be included more regularly into your diet.

The maximum recommended intake is 300 mg per day, but you can eat as many grapes as you like without worry.

Some great ways to incorporate grape seed into your diet are with recipes for:

• Smoothies
• Soups
• Cocktails
• Desserts

Let’s try them! The taste might not be the greatest, but it’s not unbearable either. Now that you’re aware of all the benefits grape seeds can have for your body, why not start taking advantage of them now.


Amazing Health Benefits Of Grape Seeds That You Need To Know

By Sravia Sivaram

Though grapes are one of the most popular fruits, many people neglect to eat them on a regular basis. Grapes are enriched with powerful antioxidants and also contain natural plant compounds called Oligomeric Proanthocyanidin Complexes (OPCs).

They are well known for their antioxidant activity, as they help to eliminate the free radicals in the body. This also aids in preventing premature ageing as well as chronic diseases.

The OPCs in grapes have varied and vast health benefits and are beneficial for all the parts of our body. The health benefits of grape seeds are such that, in the past, they were used as a traditional remedy for issues related to the heart and blood vessels, high blood pressure and weak blood circulation.

The health benefits of grape seeds do not end with that. A grape seed also has antibacterial, antiviral, anticarcinogenic, anti-inflammatory, anti-allergic and vasodilatory properties.

The plant compound OPCs found in grapes also play a major role in preventing cancer. As per studies, it was found that grape seed extract helped prevent the growth of breast, stomach, lung, prostate and colon cancer cells.

Continue reading in order to know the top health benefits of grape seeds.

1. High Blood Pressure:

Grape seed contains flavonoids, linoleic acid and phenolic procyanidins that helpto protect the blood vessels from damage and hence in preventing high blood pressure.

2. Chronic Venous Insufficiency:

The OPCs found in grape seeds will alleviate the symptoms of chronic venous insufficiency. It considerably helped to reduce the feeling of heaviness, pain and itching.

3. Bone Strength:

Grape seeds have positive health benefits on bone. It helps to improve the bone formation and strength.

4. Swelling:

Grape seeds extract helps to heal the swelling of legs. Swelling, also known as oedema, was found to be common after breast cancer surgery and by taking grape seed extract, it was found to be helpful in a big way to reduce the swelling, as per a study.

5. Cognitive Decline:

Grape seed extract also helps to reverse hippocampal dysfunction in the brain. This is done by reducing oxidative stress and in preserving mitochondrial function.

6. Oral Health:

As per a lab study, it was found that grape seed extract solution promoted the remineralization of cavities. It helped to reverse early tooth decay and played a positive role in bone health.

7. Diabetes:

Grapes can also be used for diabetes control. Administering grape seed extract along with proper exercise helped improve lipid profile, weight loss, blood pressure and other diabetic conditions.


Grape Seed Extract Benefits: How It Heals

(Reader's Digest Editors from the book Doctors' Favorite Natural Remedies)

Consider using grape seed extract for varicose veins or to reduce pain and swelling.

Both the ancient Egyptians and Greek philosophers praised the medicinal and nutritional value of grapes, often imbibed as wine, while European folk healers made an ointment from vine sap to treat skin and eye diseases.

Modern grape seed extract is derived industrially from the seeds of red grapes. You can’t gain the benefits simply by chewing on the pips, although the grapes themselves are nutritious. Grape seed extract is a powerful antioxidant that may help to alleviate health problems associated with free radical damage. It also exerts a beneficial influence on blood vessels and is useful for conditions such as varicose veins. It may also be beneficial in the treatment of certain cardiovascular conditions and eye disease related to diabetes.

How Grape Seed Extract works

In a number of studies, antioxidants known as oligomeric proanthocyanidin complexes (OPCs) found in grape seed extract have been shown to reduce the symptoms associated with varicose veins and chronic venous insufficiency such as pain and swelling.

Grape seed extract may also help to reduce swelling following surgery or caused by an injury—making it popular with some athletes—and it might lower cholesterol. Research conducted in test tubes suggests it could prevent the growth of certain types of cancer; however, this has yet to be tested successfully on humans. It has also been shown to reduce high blood pressure in animals.

How to Use Grape Seed Extract

Grape seed extract is derived from grapes and can be bought as capsules—often in combination with citrus flavonoids as a powder for athletes to use during training or as a liquid and used as drops. No recommended dose has been established, though manufacturers suggest one 100 mg tablet a day or, in liquid form, 3 drops twice daily in water before a meal. Follow label instructions or take as professionally prescribed.

Safety First

Talk to your doctor before taking grape seed extract as it could affect the way certain medications are broken down in the liver. Common side effects include headache, sore throat, dizziness, itchy scalp, stomach-ache and nausea. It may also act as a blood thinner, so should not be used if you are taking anticoagulants or other blood-thinning medications. Nor should it be used by anyone with an allergy to grapes. Grape seed extract has not been widely tested during pregnancy or breastfeeding so is best avoided or used only under medical supervision during these periods

Where to Find Grape Seed Extract

Buy tablets, drops or powder in health food stores or from a qualified herbalist.


Grape Seed Oil vs. Safflower Oil

By Matthew Lee

Safflower oil and grape seed oil are both great sources of unsaturated fats. These fats help to promote healthful levels of cholesterol in your bloodstream. However, grape seed oil is primarily composed of polyunsaturated fats and safflower oil is primarily made up of monounsaturated fats. This difference results in varying health effects and cooking applications. Although safflower oil is suitable for cooking at a greater range of temperatures, grape seed oil's high omega-6 content makes it slightly more healthful than safflower oil.

Smoke Point

All vegetable oils begin to break down at a certain temperature. When they reach this temperature, oils begin to emit smoke, change in flavor and odor, produce cancer-promoting free radicals and are no longer suitable for consumption. Grape seed oil has a high smoke point and begins to break down only after it reaches 420 degrees Fahrenheit. However, refined safflower oil's smoke point of 450 to 510 degrees Fahrenheit is much higher.

Uses

Both oils are suitable for use in sautéing, low-heat baking and sauces. As a medium-high smoke-point oil, grape seed oil is ideal for higher-heat baking, stir-frying and oven cooking. Safflower oil's high smoke point lends it to these applications, as well as searing, browning and deep-frying. Because of the risk of exceeding its smoke point and rendering it unsuitable for consumption, you should not use grape seed oil in these high-temperature cooking methods.

Fat Content

Grape seed and safflower oils are both made by pressing or steaming seeds to separate oil from the seeds' solid contents. The fat content of safflower oil is approximately 78 percent monounsaturated fats, 13.3 percent polyunsaturated fats and 8.7 percent saturated fats. By contrast, grape seed oil contains approximately 71 percent polyunsaturated fats, 17 percent monounsaturated fats and 11 percent saturated fats. Consuming oils that are high in monounsaturated polyunsaturated fats, such as grape seed and safflower oils, can be beneficial for weight control.

Health Benefits

Monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats both help to reduce levels of LDL, or "bad," cholesterol and increase levels of HDL, or "good," cholesterol. As a higher HDL-to-total cholesterol level reduces your risk of heart disease, heart attack, stroke and hardened arteries, both safflower and grape seed oils have cardiovascular benefits. In addition, the high monounsaturated fat content in safflower oil provides a good source of the antioxidant vitamin E. Although lower in vitamin E, grape seed oil's higher polyunsaturated fat content provides you with more omega-6 fatty acids. As food is your only source of these essential fatty acids, which promote healthy brain functioning, growth and development, grape seed oil has more potential health benefits than safflower oil.


Grape Seed Oil Vs. Canola Oil

By Matthew Lee

Canola and grape seed are both heart-healthy cooking oils. Their high concentrations of unsaturated fats help promote beneficial cholesterol levels. Both oils also contain high concentrations of essential omega fatty acids. However, the health benefits of canola oil exceed those of grape seed oil. With higher concentrations of vitamin E and omega-3 fatty acids and less saturated fat, canola oil is the superior of the two cooking oils.

Fat Content

Canola and grape seed oils are made by pressing seeds and removing solid mash, with canola coming from the rapeseed plant. In their natural state, rapeseeds contain approximately 30 percent oil, while grape seeds contain 20 percent. The fats and fatty acids that make up these oils differ between the two plants. Grape seed oil is primarily composed of omega-6 fatty acids, including approximately 71 percent omega-6, 17 percent monounsaturated fat and 12 percent saturated fat. Canola oil is a nearly even mixture of omega and monounsaturated fatty acids, with 7 percent omega-3, 30 percent omega-6, 54 percent monounsaturated fat and 7 percent saturated fat.

Smoke Points

Both canola and grape seed oils become inedible after reaching a certain temperature. As this is the point at which the oils start to emit smoke, it is known as their "smoke point." On reaching the smoke point, fats break down, flavors and aromas change and cancer-promoting free radicals begin to accumulate. Refined canola oil has a smoke point of 400 degrees Fahrenheit, while grape seed oil begins to smoke at 420 degrees Fahrenheit. Despite this difference, both oils are classified as having medium-high smoke points and are ideal for baking, stir-frying, oven-cooking and all lower-temperature cooking applications.

Uses

Most products labeled as "vegetable oil" are primarily soybean oil. As such, the fat composition of vegetable oil is approximately 7 percent omega-3, 50 percent omega-6, 26 percent monounsaturated, 6 percent short-chain and 9 percent medium-chain saturated fats. Total saturated fats, and medium-chain saturated fatty acids in particular, contribute to dangerous cholesterol levels. Both canola and grape seed oils contain no medium-chain saturated fatty acids and have lower total saturated fats than vegetable oil. Although grape seed oil is more aromatic, both canola and grape seed are light oils with mild flavors. As such, using these oils in place of vegetable oil in a stir-fry, when baking or in salad dressings can improve a dish's health content while having little effect on its flavor.

Health Benefits

Both grape seed and canola oils contain a high ratio of unsaturated to saturated fats. The Harvard School of Public Health states that replacing saturated fats with unsaturated fats increases levels of HDL cholesterol, decreases LDL cholesterol and reduces your risk of cardiovascular health issues, such as heart disease, stroke and hardened arteries. Because it is higher in monounsaturated fats, canola oil is higher in the antioxidant vitamin E. In addition, its lower saturated fat content helps canola oil to maintain healthy cholesterol levels better than grape seed oil.

Omega Fatty Acids

Your body cannot produce omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids. As your diet is the only source of these polyunsaturated fats, they are called "essential fatty acids." Omega-3s are important for the health of your skin and bodily tissues, with potential beneficial effects on cancer prevention, visual health, blood clotting, arthritis, heart disease and high blood pressure. Omega-6 fatty acids are important for growth and development, neurological function and breaking down cholesterol deposits. However, they may also narrow blood vessels and increase inflammation. As canola oil contains omega-3 fatty acids and less omega-6 fatty acids than grape seed oil, it is the healthier of the two options.


Is Grapeseed Oil Healthy?

By Sunny Yingling

For thousands of years, grapes and their by-products have been touted for their nutritional properties and used for medicinal purposes. Grapeseed oil is one such by-product, extracted from grape seeds during the wine-making process. This oil is especially high in heart-healthy omega-6 fatty acids and vitamin E, making it a healthy choice for nutrition-minded Americans.

Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids

Grapeseed oil is rich in omega-6 fatty acids, a specific type of polyunsaturated fatty acid, or PUFA. Replacing saturated fatty acids in the diet with omega-6 fatty acids can lower total cholesterol levels and boost high-density lipoprotein levels in the blood. Additionally, substituting some carbohydrates in the diet with PUFAs can help decrease low-density lipoprotein levels -- known for their role in creating atherosclerotic plaques in the blood vessels -- in the blood. Lowering total cholesterol and LDL cholesterol levels, coupled with increasing HDL, significantly decreases your risk for heart disease.

Inflammation

Concerns have been raised about omega-6 fatty acids creating inflammation in the arteries, according to the American Heart Association. However, the AHA concluded that the consumption of omega-6 fatty acids is not pro-inflammatory, and you should include them in a heart-healthy diet. It recommends consuming 5 to 10 percent of total calories as omega-6 fatty acids, which equates to 11 to 22 grams in a 2,000-calorie diet. Each tablespoon of grapeseed oil contains 9.5 grams of omega-6 fatty acids.

Vitamin E

One tablespoon of grapeseed oil provides 4 milligrams of vitamin E, about 27 percent of the daily needs for men and women. Vitamin E acts as an antioxidant in the body, neutralizing free radicals and preventing the chain of cell destruction. Additionally, vitamin E can inhibit platelet aggregation, decrease inflammation and enhance the immune response. The Office of Dietary Supplements reports vitamin E has been studied for its role in decreasing heart disease risk, decreasing cancer risk, improving eye health and maintaining cognitive function in the elderly.

Healthy Cooking

Grapeseed oil can be a great addition to your pantry as a healthy cooking oil. It has a high smoking point, making it an ideal option for sautéing and stir-frying your foods. When an oil is able to get to higher temperatures, less of that oil is absorbed into the foods, leading to less overall fat intake and lower calories. Additionally, grapeseed oil has a neutral flavor and may be used in baked goods, salad dressings and dips. It will enhance the flavors of other ingredients and add to the nutrient value of the dish.


Can You Substitute Grape Seed Oil for Olive Oil?

(San Francisco Gate)

Choosing between grape seed oil and olive oil depends as much on purpose as it does taste. You can substitute grape seed oil for olive oil if the recipe involves heat, but you can't if it uses olive oil as a flavoring ingredient. Grape seed oil has 28 fat grams per ounce, and olive oil has 25.2 fat grams per ounce. Both oils have healthful fats, with grape seed rich in polyunsaturated fats and olive oil rich in monounsaturated fats.

Baking Guidelines

You can substitute grape seed oil for olive oil for baking but not as a primary flavoring ingredient. The few baking recipes that call for olive oil use it for its flavor, not its fat, and build their flavor profiles around it. For example, citrus-and-olive-oil cake, a modern classic that combines the taste of extra-virgin olive oil with the bright acidity of lemons and oranges, would suffer a major flavor loss if you substituted grape seed oil; the cake would turn out the same structurally, but flavor-wise, you'll end up with an anonymous-tasting lemony orange cake that would do better with butter. The same goes for olive-oil cookies, breads and any confection that has "olive oil" in the name -- if you substitute grape seed oil, you'll ruin the dish.

When You're Frying

Frying is one area you should always choose grape seed oil over olive oil. Shallow-frying, deep-frying and sauteing all require an oil that can withstand surface temperatures between 350 and 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Extra-virgin olive oil has a smoke point -- the point it starts to break down chemically -- of 320 degrees. But its flavor and aroma start degrading -- losing their crispness, freshness and peppery finish -- at around 180 degrees. Grape seed oil, on the other hand, doesn't start smoking until it reaches 420 degrees. You don't have to worry about grape seed oil's flavor and aroma changing either because of its neutrality. There are low-quality, chemically refined olive oils, such as olive-pomace oil, that withstand temperatures up to 468 degrees, but these oils are mainly used commercially -- for packing low-quality sardines and other seafood, for example -- and you never see them on store shelves. So, when it comes to frying, grape seed is your go-to oil.

Finishing Touches

Finishing means adding a final ingredient that puts a finishing touch on a dish, but when it comes to high-quality olive oil, "anointing" might fit the technique better. Finishing oils need a robust yet restrained flavor and aroma to take the dish to greater heights without overpowering it -- basically everything grape seed oil lacks. When you have the choice between grape seed oil and extra-virgin olive oil for finishing a dish, choose an extra-virgin and drizzle it over your carpaccio, figs or prosciutto for an unforgettable final flourish.

Mayonnaise and Dressings

Mayonnaise and dressings are the few dishes where choosing between grape seed and olive oil depends on your tastes. Traditionally, mayonnaise calls for a neutral oil, such as grape seed, but if you prefer more character in your mayonnaise, go with extra-virgin olive oil. The same goes for salad dressings; most recipes call for neutral vegetable oil, but if you want to add an elegant olive finish, use an extra-virgin oil instead.



Grape seeds extract can destroy cancer cells in just one day

By Jo Willey (Health Correspondent)

A SUPPLEMENT made from grape seeds can destroy three-quarters of leukaemia cancer cells within just 24 hours, scientists have found.

The remarkable discovery is being hailed by experts after researchers claimed the finding could pave the way to promising new treatments for the disease, which affects thousands of people in the UK every year.

Laboratory experiments on a commercially-available grape seed extract forced cancer cells to “commit suicide”.

Within 24 hours, 76 per cent of leukaemia cells exposed to the extract died through a process of natural self-destruction called apoptosis, leaving healthy cells unharmed.

Grape seeds contain a number of antioxidant plant chemicals, including resveratrol, the “wonder ingredient” in red wine, which is known to have anti-cancer properties.

Previous research has shown that grapeseed extract has an effect on skin, breast, bowel, lung, stomach and prostate cancer cells in the laboratory.

It can also reduce the size of breast tumours in rats and skin tumours in mice, but it has never before been tested on blood cancer.

Earlier this year scientists claimed that resveratrol – found in the skin of red grapes – is a potent anti-ageing compound. In this latest study, US researchers found that grape seed extract strongly activates a protein called JNK which helps to regulate apoptosis.

When the scientists exposed the leukaemia cells to an agent that inhibits JNK, the grape seed extract effect was cancelled out.

Silencing the gene that makes JNK also blocked the extract’s ability to kill cancer cells.

Professor Xianglin Shi, from the University of Kentucky in Philadelphia, who led the research, said: “These results could have implications for the incorporation of agents such as grape seed extract into prevention or treatment of blood malignancies and possibly other cancers.

“What everyone seeks is an agent that has an effect on cancer cells but leaves normal cells alone, and this shows that grape seed extract fits into this category.”

Prof Shi exposed leukaemia cells to grape extract in a range of different doses.

One of the higher doses produced a marked effect, causing large numbers of the cells to destroy themselves.

Programmed cell suicide is a natural method of getting rid of damaged and potentially dangerous cells. When the mechanism behind apoptosis breaks down, cancerous cells can survive and multiply.

“This is a natural compound that appears to have relatively important properties,” said Prof Shi.


Information on Germinating Grape Seeds

(San Francisco Gate)

Germinating grape seeds offers a challenge to any green thumb, thanks to inviable seeds and plenty of opportunity for contamination. Fortunately, careful preparation can increase the germination percentage for a healthy vineyard in the summer. During stratification, temperature and moisture need monitoring to ensure grape seeds are ready for germination and planting in the spring.

Choosing Viable Seeds

You can usually tell a viable seed by the way it looks and feels. Healthy seeds are firm, with a pale white or gray endosperm inside. Any seeds that are squishy when you gently squeeze them between your fingers are not viable. To double-check this, you can drop the seeds in water and discard those that float to the top, as healthy seeds tend to sink.

Preparation

Before stratification, viable seeds need a thorough washing to remove the pulp. Soaking the grape seeds in distilled water for 24 hours before stratification increases the odds of germination. Because the seeds need to remain semi-moist during stratification, you'll need to prepare a proper bed for them, such as an air-tight bag or capsule filled with damp sand or wet paper towels. Damp peat moss is one of the best beds for grape seeds, as it has anti-fungal properties that can reduce the risk of mold that destroys the seeds during stratification. Stratification

Once you prepare the bed, you can tuck the seeds inside it and refrigerate them at 40 degrees Fahrenheit for about three months. You can safely store seeds in the fridge for a year or more, as they will not sprout in these conditions. The smartest time to do this is in December, as March is the time for planting in a greenhouse.

Germination

After removing the seeds from stratification in early spring, you can plant them in small pots, or in larger pots with at least 1 1/2 inches of space between them. A greenhouse is the safest place for them until June, when you can transplant them to their permanent places outside. They need temperatures reaching at least 70 degrees Fahrenheit by day and approximately 60 degrees Fahrenheit at night during this germination period. The time it takes the seeds to germinate varies from approximately two weeks to two months; sometimes receiving 15 hours of sunlight per day encourages them to germinate sooner rather than later. If some seeds don't germinate, you can always pop them back in the fridge for stratification until next season and try again then.


What Are the Health Benefits of Dried Grape Seed Extract?

By Tracey Roizman, DC

Grapes and grape plants, including the leaves and sap from the vines, have been used for food and medicinal purposes for over 6,000 years, according to the University of Maryland Medical Center. Grape seeds are high in vitamin E, flavonoid antioxidants, the omega-6 fatty acid called linoleic acid, and certain antioxidants. Dried grape seed extract provides a number of potential health benefits. Swelling and Inflammation

Grape seed extract reduces swelling and can help decrease edema -- surgery or injury-induced swelling -- that occurs following breast cancer surgery in some women, according to the University of Maryland Medical center. Doses of 600 milligrams per day have been used for six months after surgery and resulted in less pain and swelling. Blood Pressure

Lower blood pressure is one of the potential benefits of supplementing with grape seed extract, according to the University of California Davis School of Medicine. Typical dosages of 150 to 300 milligrams per day have been used to treat high blood pressure and other medical conditions, notes New York University's Langone Medical Center. A study published in the December 2009 issue of the journal "Metabolism" reported blood pressure-lowering benefits of both 150 milligrams and 300 milligrams per day for four weeks.

Blood Sugar

A study published in the July 2012 issue of the journal "Pharmacognosy Magazine" found that grape seed extract reduced blood sugar levels after high-carbohydrate meals. In the study of healthy volunteers, 100 milligrams of grape seed extract taken together with a high-carbohydrate meal resulted in 52 percent lower spikes in blood sugar 30 minutes after the meal than a high-carbohydrate control meal that did not include grape seed extract. Doses of 300 milligrams of grape seed extract resulted in 72 percent lower rises in blood sugar than the control meal 30 minutes after the meal.

Dental Health

Grape seed extract helped prevent cavity formation and promoted remineralization of teeth in a laboratory study published in the July 2012 issue of the "Journal of Contemporary Dental Practice." Researchers induced artificial cavities in human teeth and concluded that grape seed extract may prove to be a useful natural means for preventing tooth decay. Further studies are needed to determine whether these benefits occur outside of the laboratory setting.

Asthma and Allergies

Anti-inflammatory benefits of grape seed extract might make it a useful supplement for managing asthma, according to Wishard Health. Grape seed extract inhibits histamine production, which reduces the symptoms of nasal allergies and also helps relax the muscles that line airways. A laboratory animal study that appeared in the July 2012 issue of the "Journal of Clinical Immunology" found that eight weeks of grape seed extract supplementation significantly reduced airway constriction, decreased inflammatory cells and reduced inflammation in the lungs. Grape seed extract also reduced scarring in the lungs. Further studies are needed to determine whether these benefits extend to humans.


Is Grape Seed Extract Good for the Eyes?

By Tracey Roizman, DC

Grapes have been an integral part of human culture and cuisine for thousands of years. They provide a highly nutritious food source and have been used, along with the leaves, in various folk remedies for conditions ranging from sore throat to cancer, according to the University of Maryland Medical Center. Grape seeds, chock full of powerful antioxidants, have caught the interest of scientists and the health-conscious public and may offer benefits for a variety of health conditions, including some related to visual health.

Night Vision

Night vision may improve with grape seed extract supplementation, the University of Maryland Medical Center reports. A study published in the April 2012 issue "Current Eye Research" found that antioxidants in grape seeds protect cells in the retina, which are responsible for your ability to distinguish colors and to see in low-light conditions. In the tissue culture study, grape seed extract quenched free radicals, reversed oxidative damage and protected retinal cells from stress-induced early demise.

Macular Degeneration

Oligomeric proanthocyanins in grape seed extract may help prevent or slow the development of macular degeneration, a condition involving loss of the central field of vision, according to medicinal chemistry lecture notes from the University of Washington. Dr. Theresa Graedon, co-author of "The People's Pharmacy Guide to Home and Herbal Remedies," recommends grape seed extract for slowing macular degeneration as well as reducing visual stress caused by computer screens. Doses of 50 to 100 mg per day are common for general health and wellness. Therapeutic doses for particular conditions may go as high as 300 mg per day.

Cataract Prevention

Cataracts might be preventable, in part, by grape seed extract use, according to a tissue culture study published in the January 2011 "Molecular Vision." In the study, grape seed extract reduced oxidative damage to human lens cells exposed to hydrogen peroxide. Researchers concluded that grape seed extract may be useful for preventing or reversing oxidative damage that can lead to cataract formation. A laboratory animal study published in the June 2006 issue of "Journal of Cataract and Refractive Surgery" found that doses of 100 mg per kilogram body weight of grape seed proanthocyanidins effectively prevented cataract formation. Further clinical trials are needed to confirm these preliminary results.

Considerations

Safety of grape seed extract was addressed in a laboratory animal study published in the March 2001 "Research Communications in Molecular Pathology and Pharmacology." Short-term testing showed that grape seed extract was safe when given in single doses as high as 5,000 mg per kilogram body weight. Long-term tests showed that grape seed extract produced no toxic effects to the brain, heart, intestine, kidney, liver, lung or spleen at doses of 100 mg per kilogram body weight for 12 months.


Can You Drink Grape Seed Oil?

By William McCoy

If you typically use oils such as vegetable oil and olive oil for your cooking, it's time to consider adding a different type with a slightly tastier name. The use of grape seed oil, which is made from the seeds of red grapes, can benefit your health in a number of ways. Even if you're anxious to get the benefits of this oil, you don't have to go to the length of drinking it. Don't Try Drinking It

Grape seed oil is a healthy type of oil to include in your diet. It has a multitude of uses in the kitchen and can easily replace other oils with which you might typically cook. Although no health organizations caution against drinking grape seed oil, you can consume the oil in better ways. Despite its name, this type of oil doesn't have a taste reminiscent of grapes, and its thick, oily texture isn't enjoyable to swallow.

Keep Your Oil Intake Low

Part of the reason you shouldn't try to drink grape seed oil is because, taste and texture aside, you don't need to consume a significant amount of this oil. Provided you get at least 30 minutes of physical activity, ChooseMyPlate.gov cautions against consuming oil in excess of 7 teaspoons per day. Women between 19 and 30 years of age should consume up to 6 teaspoons of oil daily and 5 teaspoons after the age of 30. For men, an intake of 7 teaspoons per day is appropriate between the ages of 19 and 30. After 30, men should limit their oil intake to 6 teaspoons.

Uses for Grape Seed Oil

You don't have to resort to drinking grape seed oil because you can include it in your diet in several easier-to-stomach ways. This type of oil is ideal to use for frying because it has virtually no taste that could otherwise affect your food. It also won't smoke even at high temperatures. Grape seed oil can work in your deep fryer or frying pan. It can also serve as an ingredient in homemade salad dressings.

A Healthy Source of Vitamin E

Grape seed oil is notable for its high concentration of vitamin E. One tablespoon of the oil has 3.9 milligrams of this vitamin. The same amount of corn, peanut or olive oil has just 2.1 milligrams of vitamin E. Your recommended dietary allowance of vitamin E is 15 milligrams per day. In your body, vitamin E serves as an antioxidant, improves your immune system and contributes to cell function.


Grape Seed Oil Health Benefits

(Editorial Team, The Health Site)

A component in grape seed extract has been shown to kill cancerous prostate cells, while leaving healthy cells unharmed, Indian-origin scientists have found. A new study describes the laboratory synthesis of the most active component of grape seed extract, B2G2, and shows this synthesised compound induces the cell death known as apoptosis in prostate cancer cells while leaving healthy cells unharmed.

‘We’ve shown similar anti-cancer activity in the past with grape seed extract (GSE), but now we know B2G2 is its most biologically active ingredient which can be synthesised in quantities that will allow us to study the detailed death mechanism in cancer cells,’ said Alpna Tyagi, of the University of Colorado Skaggs School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences. The group has spent more than a decade demonstrating the anti-cancer activity of GSE in controlled, laboratory conditions.

For example, previous studies have shown the GSE effectiveness against cancer cells and have also shown its mechanism of action. ‘But until recently, we didn’t know which constituent of GSE created this effect. This naturally occurring compound, GSE, is a complex mixture of polyphenols and also so far it has been unclear about the biologically active constituents of GSE against cancer cells,’ said Tyagi, who works in the lab of CU Cancer Center investigator, Chapla Agarwal.

Eventually the group pinpointed B2G2 as the most active compound, but, ‘it’s expensive and it takes a long time to isolate B2G2 from grape seed extract,’ Tyagi said. So instead of purifying B2G2 from GSE, the group decided to synthesise it in the lab. The study reported the success of this effort, including the ability to synthesise gram-quantity of B2G2 reasonably quickly and inexpensively.

The group showed anti-cancer activity of synthesised B2G2 similar in mechanism and degree to overall GSE effectiveness. ‘Our goal all along has been a clinical trial of the biologically active compounds from GSE against human cancer. But it’s difficult to earn FDA approval for a trial in which we don’t know the mechanisms and possible effects of all active components.

‘Therefore, isolating and synthesising B2G2 is an important step because now we have the ability to conduct more experiments with the pure compound. Ongoing work in the lab further increases our understanding of B2G2′s mechanism of action that will help for the preclinical and clinical studies in the future,’ said Tyagi.

The study was published in the journal Nutrition and Cancer.

What is cancer?

Cancer is a group of over one hundred diseases characterised by abnormal, uncontrolled cell growth. Ina healthy body cells grow, die and are replaced in a very controlled way. Damage or change in the genetic material of cells by environmental or internal factors result in cells that don’t die and continue to multiply until a massive cancer or a tumour develops. Most cancer related deaths are due to metastasis, malignant cells that penetrate into the circulatory system and establish colonies in other parts of the body.


Grape Seed Oil Health Benefits

By Joanne Marie

Grapes have been recognized for their food and medicinal value for thousands of years; philosophers wrote of the healing powers of grapes in the time of ancient Greece. Today, modern science recognizes that the oily extract of grape seeds is a source of antioxidants and other biologically active compounds that may help keep you healthy and disease-free.

Antioxidant Benefits

Grape seeds are separated from grapes when they are pressed to make wine. Grinding the seeds releases an oil that contains a number of fatty compounds, some proteins, vitamin E and plant compounds called flavonoids. One class of flavonoids, oligomeric proanthocyanidins, or OPCs, contains especially potent antioxidants that may have significant health benefits. Antioxidants stabilize free radicals, which are unstable chemicals formed in your body as byproducts of digestion or after you are exposed to environmental toxins. Free radicals can speed aging and raise your risk of cancer and other diseases. When stabilized by antioxidants, they become harmless and your body can easily dispose of them.

Cardiovascular Benefits

Many research studies suggest that grape seed oil has cardiovascular benefits. For example, a study published in "Journal of Medicine" found that subjects with high cholesterol who consumed grape seed extract along with chromium for two months had lowered cholesterol levels, compared to groups who consumed a placebo or the extract or chromium alone. In a review of clinical trials published in "Journal of the American Dietetic Association," the authors concluded that compounds in grape seeds can significantly lower blood pressure and reduce heart rates in human subjects. A laboratory study published in "Mutation Research" identified several mechanisms through which OPCs in grape seeds improve heart function, leading the authors to suggest that grape seed oil might be a useful therapeutic tool.

Other Benefits

Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center reports that compounds in grape seeds may have anti-cancer properties, citing a study in "Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers and Prevention" in which many supplements were evaluated for their possible use in preventing cancer. The authors concluded that grape seed extracts may lower the risk of developing certain cancers of the circulatory system. Cancer Center experts also report that grape seed extracts inhibit growth of cultured cancer cells in the laboratory and could increase the anti-cancer effects of some chemotherapy drugs. According to the University of Maryland Medical Center, grape seed oil can also speed recovery from swelling or edema caused by surgery or an injury, and it may improve symptoms of venous insufficiency, a disorder of the veins in your legs.

How To Use It

Grape seed oil is available at some food markets as bottled oil or from health food stores as oil or extract in capsules, tablets or liquid. For maximum health benefit, choose oil or extract standardized for its content of OPCs. Generally considered safe and without significant side effects, grape seed oil or extract might cause mild nausea, stomach upset or diarrhea in some people and might interact with certain medications, including blood-thinners or drugs broken down in your liver. Do not consume grape seed extract if you are pregnant or breast-feeding. Talk to your doctor before consuming the oil or extract to decide what is best for your situation.


The Benefits of Grape Seed Extract

By Shelley Moore (LIVESTRONG.COM)

Grape seeds contain potent antioxidants, which are substances that neutralize and eliminate harmful free radicals. Some research, primarily with animals, indicates that standardized grape seed extracts may be useful for treating health problems related to free radical damage, according to the the University of Maryland Medical Center (UMMC). The UMMC advises using herbal therapy under the supervision of a health care provider qualified in botanical medicine.

Antioxidants

Vitamin E is an important antioxidant in grape seed, but even more powerful are the flavonoids called oligomeric proanthocyanidin complexes, or OPCs, according to the UMMC. Antioxidants destroy free radicals, which are waste products that develop from the conversion of food to energy and also occur in response to environmental toxins. Free radicals damage cells and genetic material and may contribute to aging and disease, including heart disease and cancer.

Blood Vessel Benefits

Evidence indicates a substantial health benefit for patients with chronic venous insufficiency who take grape seed extract, according to the University of Michigan Health System (UMHS). This disorder causes blood to pool in leg veins, leading to leg swelling and fatigue, as well as pain that worsens when walking. Grape seed extract also may be beneficial for treating varicose veins and capillary fragility, although research is not as consistent, notes the UMHS.

Additionally, the antioxidants in grape seed have a protective effect on blood vessels, which can help prevent high blood pressure. Animal research indicates that grape seed extract lowers blood pressure, according to the UMMC, but research on humans is lacking.

Anti-Cancer Effects

Grape seed antioxidants also may decrease the risk of developing cancer. Additionally, laboratory studies show that grape seed extract prevents the growth of various types of cancer in test tubes, according to the UMMC, including breast, colon, stomach, prostate and lung cancer. Grape seed extract also may protect the liver from cell damage caused by chemotherapy.

Side Effects

Grape seed extract is generally not associated with side effects, according to the UMHS, and excess is removed through urine. The most likely side effects include headache, dizziness, nausea and a dry, itchy scalp, according to the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine. Grape seed extract may have blood-thinning properties, which could increase the risk of bleeding if taken with blood thinning medications.

Usage

Grape seed is available as liquid extract and dried extract in capsules and tablets. The UMMC recommends buying extracts standardized to at least 40 percent proanthocyanidins or at least 95 percent OPCs. To protect against free radical damage, take 25 to 150mg one to three times daily, and for chronic venous insufficiency, take 150 to 300mg once per day. The UMMC advises that children as well as pregnant or breastfeeding women should not take grape seed supplements.


3 ways grapes can protect your kidneys

By Anuradha Varanasi

Grapes can safeguard your kidney's health and also reverse kidney damage! Here's how...

While the burden of kidney diseases in India can’t be assessed accurately, the approximate prevalence of chronic kidney disease is as high as 800 per million population . The leading cause of kidney diseases among Indians is diabetic nephropathy. However, you can avoid the risk of kidney diseases and safeguard your health by consuming grapes. Various studies have established that grape seeds extract and a component found in grapes called resveratrol are effective in protecting your kidneys, especially for diabetics. You can improve your kidney’s health by adding a glass of grape juice or at least 15 grapes a day to your diet, as per the recommendation of the National Kidney Foundation. Here’s how this fruit is beneficial for your kidneys. Other than this, red grapes can also boost your immunity.

Can reverse kidney damage

A study published in Applied Physiology, Nutrition, and Metabolism found that the compounds found in grape seed and skin can reverse kidney damage caused by a high fat diet . Obese people are more prone to kidney damage as it can lead to depletion of copper from the kidney, among other complications. The study suggests using grape seed and skin extracts as a preventive supplement for patients at a high risk of kidney disease due to obesity. Grapes is a great source of antioxidants, which protects the body against oxidative stress, which is the imbalance between production of free radicals and antioxidant defences.

Prevention of kidney disease

Around 50% of patients suffer from acute renal failure due to inadequate blood supply to the kidneys, or what is known as ischemia. Grapes have anti oxidant and anti-inflammatory mechanisms as the compound resveratol reduces the risk of damage caused by ischemia . Resveratol was found to have a protective effect in rats’ kidneys who were suffering from tissue damage caused by the return of blood supply to the kidneys, after a period of lack of oxygen supply or ischemia. This study was conducted by Italian doctors from the University of Milan in 2013.

Reduction of renal disturbances

Iranian researchers found that 50 mg of grape seeds extracts a day for two weeks may reduce kidney function disturbances following tissue damage caused by ischemia . The study was conducted on 32 rats in 2013 and researchers hope that this finding will be able to reduce the harmful effects of renal disturbances. Here are 5 other foods that can help you recover from kidney disease.



Grape seed, chemo combo could treat bowel cancer

(AAP)

Grape seed can be combined with chemotherapy to improve treatment for bowel cancer, according to Australian scientists.

They say the wine-making by-product reduces intestinal damage caused by chemotherapy and enhances its effect.

It reduces inflammation and tissue damage caused by chemotherapy in the small intestine, says Dr Amy Cheah, lead author of an article about the study published in the journal PLOS ONE.

"Unlike chemotherapy, grape seed appears to selectively act on cancer cells and leave healthy cells almost unaffected," said the University of Adelaide researcher.

Commercially available grape seed extract was used in the study which involved laboratory tests on cell cultures.

Co-author and project leader Professor Gordon Howarth said: "Grape seed is showing great potential as an anti-inflammatory treatment for a range of bowel diseases and now as a possible anti-cancer treatment."



Compound In Grape Seed Extract Causes Prostate Cancer Cell Death

By Anthony Rivas

A compound in grape seed extract has been shown in lab tests to kill prostate cancer cells and prevent their growth.

Grape seed extract’s abundance in bioflavonoid compounds known as procyanidins, which are also found in apples and chocolate, has led many to use it as a supplement for its many health benefits. One of the most promising pieces of research into the bioflavonoids is that they were able to kill prostate cancer cells. Until now, however, researchers didn’t know which specific compound was mostly responsible for this process. In a new study, researchers detail how they were able to synthesize the responsible compound, and showed how it killed the cancer cells.

Researchers from the University of Colorado Cancer Center had previously looked into procyanidins’ potential to kill cancer cells. “This naturally occurring compound, grape seed extract, is a complex mixture of polyphenols and, so far, it has been unclear about the biologically active constituents of grape seed extract against cancer cells,” Alpna Tyagi, of the University of Colorado Skaggs School of Pharmacy and Phamaceutical Sciences, said in a press release.

The team of researchers found that the procyanidin B2G2 was the most active compound against prostate cancer cells, however, isolating large enough quantities from the grape seed extract was time consuming and expensive. Isolating larger quantities would have been even more difficult. So instead, they decided that synthesizing the compound would be the best route, and they were right — they were left with a completely pure form of the compound at a fraction of the cost and time. Upon testing the compound on prostate cells, they found that both the isolated compound and the synthesized compound inhibited cell growth and caused cell death, which is known as apoptosis.

“Our goal all along has been a clinical trial of the biologically active compounds from grape seed extract against human cancer,” Tyagi said in the statement. “But it’s difficult to earn FDA approval for a trial in which we don’t know the mechanisms and possible effects of all active components.” By overcoming this challenge, Tyagi’s team has moved that much closer to conducting studies on the compound’s effect on prostate cancer outside of a petri dish.

Aside from prostate cancer, the procyanidins in grape seed extract have also been found to have other health benefits. According to the National Institutes of Health, grape seed extract can alleviate chronic venous insufficiency, allowing blood to flow more freely from the legs to the heart, and it can reduce eye and blood vessel problems associated with diabetes.


Grape Seed Extract Benefits Blood Pressure and Cholesterol

(UHN Staff)

Grape seed extract contains a high percentage of compounds called oligomeric proanthocyanidins.

Six thousand years ago, the Egyptians recognized the healing power of grapes although they didn’t fully understand why the fruit is so beneficial. Today, we now know how grape seed extract works to naturally lower blood pressure and cholesterol levels. Grape seed extract contains a high percentage of compounds called oligomeric proanthocyanidins (OPCs for short). OPCs from grape seed extract are flavonoids that have been well-known for some time as potent antioxidants that promote blood vessel strength and optimal eye health. More recently, however, researchers have discovered two new roles for OPCs: lowering blood pressure and cholesterol.

Grape seed extract for high cholesterol

Oxidized LDL particles play a key role in the formation of arterial plaques and the development of atherosclerosis. Grape seed extract decreased oxidized LDL particles in addition to lowering total and LDL cholesterol in a recent randomized double-blind placebo-controlled study.[1] Fifty-two individuals with mildly high cholesterol were divided into two groups that received either 200 mg/day of grape seed extract or placebo for 8 weeks. The grape seed extract significantly reduced total cholesterol by an average of 10.7 mg/dL, LDL cholesterol by an average of 9.7 mg/dL, and oxidized LDL by an average of 5.5 mg/dL. While triglyceride and very low-density lipoprotein cholesterol were decreased and high-density lipoprotein cholesterol was increased by the grape seed extract, the changes were not statistically significant. The study authors concluded that grape seed extract lowers the risk of atherosclerosis and cardiovascular disorders in people with mild cholesterol abnormalities.

Grape seed extract for high blood pressure

When taken as a supplement, grape seed extract has also been shown to significantly lower blood pressure, in some small studies. Two studies performed at the University of California Davis, one in people with metabolic syndrome and one in people with prehypertension, both found that grape seed extract lowers both systolic (the top number) and diastolic (the bottom number) blood pressure. In the first study, 300 mg per day of grape seed extract (MegaNatural BP by Polyphenolics—a patented extract) lowered both the systolic and diastolic blood pressures compared to placebo in subjects with metabolic syndrome.[2] Those in the grape seed extract group experienced average blood pressure reductions of 12 mmHg systolic and 8 mmHg diastolic while those in the placebo group saw no changes. The grape seed extract also decreased the oxidation of LDL particles, lowering the subjects’ risk of atherosclerosis. In the second study, 32 participants with prehypertension (systolic blood pressure of 120-139 mmHg or a diastolic blood pressure of 80-89 mmHg) were randomly assigned to receive grape seed extract (300 mg per day) or placebo for eight weeks.[3] Participants who took the grape seed extract reduced their systolic blood pressure by an average of 8 mmHg and diastolic blood pressure by 5 mmHg. The blood pressure of those in the placebo group did not change.

How to take grape seed extract as a supplement to lower high blood pressure and cholesterol

Grape seed extract is one of the most powerful antioxidants yet discovered. To take advantage of this natural compound for lowering blood pressure and cholesterol, look for grape (vitis vinifera) seed extract, standardized to contain at least 92%-95% polyphenols (including OPCs). Take 300 mg once a day or split the dose. Take the supplement for a full 12 weeks to get optimal results. Grape seed extract is not associated with side effects and there are no reported interactions between grape seed extract and any medications or supplements. Tell us your favorite uses of grape seed extract in your family

Grape seed extract comes in liquid tincture form or in capsules, and it has literally dozens of uses around your home in addition to its blood pressure and cholesterol benefits. These include such uses as wrinkle and sagging skin improvement, a natural anti-histamine, and eye health restorer. Share in the comments section below how you use grape seed extract and what form (liquid or capsule) is your favorite.


6 Oils That Work 10 Times Better Than Any Body Lotion By: Kumutha Published

(Kumutha)

At some point or the other, we all have faced this dilemma, "which is the better option" natural body oil or a body lotion? Both body lotion and natural oil do the same job of moisturisingyour skin, so what difference does it make? A HUGE difference apparently. Lotion is basically a combination of oil and water, since oil and wax do not combine well, wax is used to emulsify the ingredients. The wax forms a layer on the skin, which helps trap the moisture. Only downfall is, the layer does not just trap moisture, but also dirt and bacteria, which clog pores, leading to breakout.

Furthermore, this layer is like a barrier on the skin, which prevents the nutrients in the oil from getting absorbed by the skin. Ayurvedic or natural body oil, on the other hand, is a powerhouse of essential vitamins, fatty acids and antioxidants. And it is 100% active, which means it easily gets absorbed by the skin, without creating any filters. And on the contrary to the popular belief, herbal oils do not disrupt the natural balance of your skin, in fact they help control the sebaceous glands, keeping oil production in check! So, here are 6 herbal oils that work better than any body lotion, take a look!

Coconut Oil

Let's see what coconut oil does, shall we? It is a potent moisturizer that works well as a non-toxic eye makeup remover and is a great alternative to shaving cream! But why should you use coconut oil instead of a body lotion? Well, it is a powerhouse of antibacterial and antiseptic properties, is rich in antioxidants and vital vitamins, all of which nourish, hydrate and clear the skin!

Jasmine + Camelia + Grapeseed oil

Camelia is high on omega-6 and omega-9 acids, which boost the skin's elasticity and promote healthy glow. Grapeseed oil has linoleic acid and vitamins that tone and tighten the skin, whereas jasmine will make you smell incredible and has antioxidants, which will keep your skin healthy.

-How It Works • Mix all the moisturising oils for dry skin in an equal quantity, and store it in an air-tight bottle. • Depending on the requirement, use it sparingly.

Jojoba + Chia Seed + Almond Oil

Almond oil is packed with antioxidants that repair the damaged skin cells and promote skin regeneration. Jojoba oil has moisture balance close to the sebum of our skin, which makes it easily absorbable. And, chia seed oil has a high count of omega, which soothes skin inflammation.

-How It Works • Mix 1 teaspoon of almond oil, with 10 drops of jojoba oil and chia seed oil. • After shower, massage the Ayurvedicbody oil onto your skin. • Depending on your skin's natural moisture, tweak the amount.

Lavender + Citrus + Lemongrass + Avocado Oil

Ideal to soothe aching muscles,Lavender has linalool, which lightens scar. Citrus oil has vitamin C that rejuvenates the skin. Avocado is a powerhouse of vitamins and antioxidants, which tighten skin, hydrating from within and promoting skin regeneration. And lemon grass oil gives the concoction a light and healing fragrance.

-How It Works • Mix 1 tablespoon of avocado oil, with 10 drops of lavender, 5 drops of citrus and 2 drops lemon grass oil. • Massage your skin with thisnatural body oil and feel your muscles getting relaxed to a great extent.

Shea Butter + Grapeseed Oil

Shea butter has an ample amount of vitamin A, which hydrates the skin by penetrating deep while removing dark patches and lightening scars. And grapeseed oil has vitamin C, which lightens and brightens the skin.

-How It Works • In a low flame, melt shea butter, and stir in 10 drops of grapeseed oil. • Turn off the flame, once shea butter melts, allow it to cool in room temperature. • Massage the natural body oil onto the skin after every shower.

Olive Oil + Argan + Sandalwood Oil

Olive oil has a high ratio of antioxidants that hydrate and repair damaged skin cells. Vitamin E, present in argan oil, lightens and tightens the skin Sandalwood oil gives the concoction an amazing fragrance, plus it soothes inflammation.

-How It Works • Mix 10 drops of olive oil, with 5 drops of arganoil and 5 drops of sandalwood oil. • Massage the mixture onto your skin every day, and watch your skin become visibly softer and smoother in 10days!


Lower heart disease, diabetes risk with grapeseed oil

(IANS)

New York: A diet rich in a fatty acid that is essential for nutrition and found in grapeseed and other oils but not in olive oil may lower the risk of heart disease and diabetes, suggests a study.

The results showed that men and women with higher linoleic acid levels -- which contains omega-6 fatty acid -- are less prone to heart disease and inflammation and also possess more lean body mass.

Higher linoleic acid levels also means lower likelihood of insulin resistance, which is a precursor to diabetes.

“This finding could have obvious implications in preventing heart disease and diabetes, but also could be important for older adults because higher lean body mass can contribute to a longer life with more independence,” said Martha Belury, professor at Ohio State University.

Grapeseed oil for now remains an excellent source of linoleic acid, which constitutes about 80 percent of its fatty acids. Corn oil also remains a decent source, the researchers noted.

However, the general consumption of linoleic acid is declining because of genetic modification of plants for food manufacturers seeking oils higher in oleic acid. The industry's push against trans fats can be one possible reason.

"Vegetable oils have changed. They're no longer high in linoleic acid," Belury pointed out.

When linoleic acid gets solid (hydrogenated) for processed foods, it is more likely to convert to trans fat than its oleic cousin.

So oils, notably safflower, sunflower and soybean, now routinely contain less linoleic acid - it often makes up less than 20 percent of the fatty acids in commonly purchased oils, based on food labels and confirmed by testing in her lab, Belury explained.

The study, published in the journal Molecular Nutrition & Food Research, is the first to examine linoleic acid alongside body composition and other health markers in people who hadn't been given supplements or prescriptive diets, the researchers noted.


Grapeseed Oil Benefits: Actually Healthy or a Big, Fat Lie?

By Aashna Ahuja (NDTV)

A few days go by and a new “health food” arrives in the market. In plenty cases, the health claims are spurious and don’t have any real studies to support them. The same appears to be the case with grapeseed oil, a leftover by-product of wine-making. Grapeseed oil is a polyunsaturated oil that is chemically extracted from the seeds of grapes after wine is made.

The 5 “Benefits” of Grapeseed Oil

Grapeseed oil benefits are based on the supposedly high amounts of nutrients, antioxidants and polyunsaturated fats of the seeds. But here’s a newsflash… most of the nutrients and antioxidants (including the proanthocyanidins) from grape seeds are not present in the oil. Let’s take a look at the supposed benefits of using grapeseed oil.

1. Grapeseed oil is a good source of Vitamin E

After the intense chemical extraction process, most of the good properties are actually filtered out. The only nutrient left in any significant amount is Vitamin E. One tablespoon of grapeseed oil contains 9 mg of Vitamin E, which is 19% of the Recommended Daily Allowance. In fact, grapeseed oil contains about twice as much Vitamin E as olive oil. Vitamin E is an antioxidant that helps prevent cell damage in your body and strengthens your immune system.

2. Grapeseed oil has no cholesterol and very little saturated fat

Yes, grapeseed oil is rich in cholesterol-lowering polyunsaturated fats. 1 tablespoon of grapeseed oil contains 14 grams fat, about 10 percent of which is saturated fat, 16 percent monounsaturated and 70 percent polyunsaturated.

3. Grapeseed oil has a high smoke point

It’s true. The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics notes that grapeseed oil has a moderately high smoking point which makes it ideal for frying and sauteing. “Grapeseed oil has a mild nutty taste so the flavour of the food you are cooking with it shine through. For Indian food, you can make your dry vegetable preparations with grapeseed oil”, says Delhi-based Nutritionist Anshul Jaibharat. It also has terrific emulsifying properties, which makes it an excellent oil for salad dressings.

4. Grapeseed oil has the highest concentration of polyunsaturated fats, so it’s good for your heart

Yes, grape seed oil is very high in polyunsaturated fats. However, there are two main kinds of polyunsaturated fats: Omega-3s and Omega-6s. To maintain optimal health, the balance of different kinds of polyunsaturated fats is important. And as it turns out, grapeseed oil contains mostly Omega-6 fatty acids. According to Dr. Rupali Datta, SmartCooky, “Indian diets do not need such a high amount of Omega-6”. There is also not enough scientific backing to prove that grapeseed oil is heart healthy.

5. Grapeseed oil is beneficial for hair and skin

Grapeseed oil has been championed as a wonderful addition to any beauty regimen, and for good reason. Dr. Ashutosh Gautam, Clinical Operations and Coordination Manager at Baidyanath says, “Grapeseed oil helps remove tan, moisturise the skin, give you that glow you’ve always wanted and even lighten the effects on age spots. Many skincare creams contain grapeseed oil as well”. It contains 73% of linoleic acid which may be beneficial in the treatment of acne, allergic reactions and dry and itchy skin. Grapeseed oil is free from synthetic ingredients and loaded with moisturising fatty acids, so there seems to be nothing wrong with applying it topically.

The Bottom Line?

Shilpa Arora says, “I’m not a fan of grapeseed oil. It may be good if used in moderation. But in larger quantities, it may inhibit the absorption of other nutrients”. Grapeseed oil lacks in vitamin K, vitamin C, copper and potassium in comparison to actually eating grapes. Dr. Rupali Datta, Chief-Nutritionist, SmartCooky says, “There is very little scientific evidence that supports grapeseed oil being healthy. However, given its nutritional profile, it seems safe for consumption. You can use this oil in combination with other cooking oils”. So it should not be the primary source of fat in your diet. Nutitionist Anshul agrees, “Since no one oil has everything, you can use a combination of two-three oils in a month. If you like the taste of grapeseed oil, aim to balance it out with other types of healthy fats from coconut oil and olive oil”.


Grapeseed extract shows promise in prevention of cancer

By Patrick B. Massey, MD, PH.D.

Albert Einstein once said "Look deep into nature, and then you will understand everything better."

In regards to the prevention and treatment of cancer, we are discovering that the foods we eat may have significant impact. A case in point is grapeseed extract.

Over the past 10 years, a number of medical studies have demonstrated that grapeseed extract, at least in animal models, can have significant impact on a number of different cancers. Although there are no compelling human clinical studies, grapeseed extract in the animal models of cancer are quite positive.

Grapeseed extract, as the name implies, comes from grapeseed. This particular product is very rich in a number of vitamins, as well as other biologically active compounds such as flavonoids, procyanidins and resveratrol.

Although most of the research into grapeseed extract has been done in animal models, grapeseed extract seems to have a positive effect throughout the entire body.

For example, in animals it has been shown to increase bone density. There is some data indicating that it also is effective at preventing tooth decay and reducing blood pressure. It does exhibit some antibacterial and antiviral activity in a test tube.

Most importantly, grapeseed extract seems to retard cancer cell growth both in the test tube and in animal models. A number of studies over the years have demonstrated that it inhibits the growth of cancer cell lines of lung, breast, prostate and colon cancers.

Some of the most interesting anticancer research has explored the aromatase-inhibiting activity of grapeseed extract and its effect on breast cancer cell growth. One older study published in 2006 demonstrated that grapeseed extract has significant aromatase-inhibiting activity and suppresses the growth of breast cancer cells in the mouse model for breast cancer.

Aromatase is an enzyme that, basically, converts testosterone into estrogen. Many types of breast cancer are stimulated by estrogen and have a very active aromatase enzyme system.

In traditional medicine some chemotherapy agents inhibit the activity of the aromatase enzyme and through that inhibition slow or prevent the growth of estrogen-sensitive breast cancer cells.

This 2006 study, published in Cancer Research, demonstrated that grapeseed extract has significant aromatase-inhibiting activity and greatly reduced the growth of breast cancer cells in mice that are genetically designed to develop breast cancer.

Since this study was published, dozens of other studies have demonstrated that many plants inhibit aromatase activity and may be beneficial for the prevention and treatment of a number of different cancers including breast cancer, colon cancer and prostate cancer.

Even though grapeseed extract may inhibit the growth of breast cancer cells, I do not endorse it as sole treatment for breast cancer.

In addition, there is always concern as to how grapeseed extract affects medications, even though the current data indicates that it is quite safe. A medical physician, board-certified in integrative medicine would be able to provide the best recommendations for the use of grapeseed extract during chemotherapy.


7 Amazing Benefits of Grapes for Health and Skin

By Plavaneeta Borah

From being used in dishing out sinful desserts and refreshing fruit bowls to being renowned as the primary ingredient in the wine making process, it is not without reason that grapes are known as the queen of fruits. Classified under the family of berries, grapes come in different varieties as well as colours – green, red, blue, purple and black. While majority of the production of grapes in the world are used by the wine making industry, the remaining lot is consumed as fruits and a small portion is used in making dried fruits.

Tracing its roots, it is said that grapes were first domestically cultivated in the Middle East, where it soon became popular when the city of Shiraz started using it to make wine. Eventually, other countries also started growing it and using it in the wine making process.

Grapes are easily available in the markets throughout the year. The vine containing the cluster of berries are not only pretty to look at and delicious with its sweet and tarty taste, but are loaded with essential nutrients that work for the well-being of the body.

Why Grapes are Good for You?

Researchers and many studies have found that including grapes in one’s diet can actually be good for health as it has numerous health benefiting properties –

1. Loaded with Antioxidants

Grapes are a powerhouse of antioxidants – they contain a wide range of phytonutrients right from carotenoids to polyphenols. Studies have revealed that these phytonutrients help in preventing certain kinds of cancers and help in maintaining heart health. Among polyphenols, resveratrol is known for its miraculous properties such as inhibiting the formation of free radicals that could cause cancer and dilating blood vessels to ease blood flow and lower blood pressure. Point to note: The antioxidant content is the highest in the seeds and the skin. So, do make use of them.

2. Prevents Skin Problems

It is found that resveratrol prevents signs of ageing and other skin problems. According to a study conducted by the team at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), resveratrol, when combined with a common acne medication benzoyl peroxide, fights the acne causing bacteria.

3. High Source of Potassium

The nutritional breakup of grapes reveals that per 100 grams of the fruit contains 191 mg of potassium. High intake of potassium and lowering sodium content can help your body in numerous ways. Potassium also counteracts excess sodium. A low-sodium-high-potassium diet has proven beneficial for high blood pressure, high cholesterol and heart health in most cases. According to Robynne Chutkan, a gastroenterologist, author and founder of the Digestive Centre for Women in Washington D.C., a bloated stomach can invite many health-related problems. Cutting down on salt intake and focusing on potassium-rich fiber can help in getting a flat stomach.

4. Good for the Eyes

According to a study done by University of Miami, Florida, grapes promote eye health from signalling changes at the cellular level to directly countering oxidative stress. Including grapes in the diet results in lower levels of inflammatory proteins and higher amounts of protective proteins in the retinas, which is the part of the eye that contains the cells that respond to light, known as photoreceptors.

5. Boost Brain Power

Certain studies have found that resveratrol helps in increasing blood flow to the brain, thereby it could help speed up mental responses and prove to be beneficial for those suffering from brain related ailments like Alzheimer’s. A study done by the University of Switzerland also found that resveratrol can help remove plaques and free radicals, which affect the brain.

6. Good for the Knees

A study done by Texas Woman's University has established that daily intake of grapes can help get relief from knee pain, especially the ones triggered due to symptomatic osteoarthritis. Grapes are high on antioxidants, most important and beneficial one being polyphenols, which help in improving the flexibility and mobility of joints.

7. Anti-Inflammatory Properties

It has been found that grapes contain certain enzymes which bring about anti-inflammatory effect in our body. As such it brings about relief to the arteries, promotes heart health and helps in other repair functions of the body.

How to Include Grapes in Your Diet

Besides all the health benefits, grapes are also loaded with vitamins and essential minerals such as Vitamins A, B-6, B-12, C and D, calcium, iron and magnesium. However, one shouldn’t overload on grapes as they also contain sugar. It is said that berries should be included at least 3-4 days in a person’s weekly diet plan. And one should always consume a mix of fruits for better benefits. Although if you are consuming only grapes alone, then the serving per day could be 2-3 cups, considering each cup contains about 15-20 grapes.

Cooking with Grapes

The juicy flesh and the sweet and tarty flavour make this fruit an ideal ingredient to cook with. Enjoy them whole by adding them to fruit bowls and summer salads. Try and get your hands on the different coloured grapes (blue and red) to add some drama to your dish. Team them with pearl barley, lettuce, chopped cucumber, capsicum – choices are aplenty!

Coming to baking, you can use them to make berry tarts and clafoutis, top them on pavlovas or pannacottas, roast them along with chicken, or make tea cakes. You could also use them to make sweet and spicy chutneys, compotes and sauces; shake up some refreshing mocktails; or even use them to make sorbets.

Here are some recipes to get you started –

1. Grape Chicken

A simple but delicious recipe of chicken cooked with pureed grapes and served with a sauce of chicken stock and grape juice.

For the recipe, click here.

2. Angoor Rabdi

Rich, creamy and smooth, this version of the classic Indian dessert is made with grapes. Easy to prepare at home, this dessert is sure to be a big hit.

For the recipe, click here.

3. Carrot Salad with Black Grape Dressing

Why buy salad dressings off the rack that are full of preservatives? Here's how you can whip up a quick carrot salad with raisins and almonds and a lipsmacking black grape dressing.

For the recipe, click here.


Grapeseed Oil May Reduce Heart Disease, Diabetes Risks

By Katherine Derla (Tech Times)

Grape seed extract is an industrial derivative of grape seeds, extremely rich in antioxidants and oligomeric proanthocyanidin complexes (OPCs).

The extract has been linked to a wide range of possible therapeutic properties including healing wounds and treating conditions such as high cholesterol, atherosclerosis, macular degeneration, poor circulation, nerve damage, as well as preventing cancer.

Although many of these health claims are still not completely backed up by "high quality" studies, strong evidence is beginning to emerge on grape seed extract's extensive health benefits.

Grape seed extract is available as a dietary supplement in either a liquid form, tablets or capsules. Supplements generally contain between 50 to 100 mg of the extract.

This Medical News Today information article provides details on the benefits of grape seed extract as well as side effects and precautions associated with its use.

What are the benefits of grape seed extract

Studies on animal models have revealed that the extract can be effective in treating heart diseases. Some experts think that grape seed extract could even have anticancer and cancer chemopreventive potential.

Over recent years there has been a great deal of research pointing to key therapeutic properties of the grape seed extract. Listed below are some of the key findings.

Health benefits associated with grape seed extract:

•Healing wounds - Grape seed extract can heal dermal wounds.

A study, published in the journal Free Radical Biology and Medicine, "provided firm evidence to support that topical application of GSPE represents a feasible and productive approach to support dermal wound healing."

•Improving bone strength - Including grape seed extract in your diet with calcium has a "beneficial effect on bone formation and bone strength for the treatment of bone debility caused by a low level of calcium," according to research published in the Journal of Musculoskeletal & Neuronal Interactions.

•Preventing skin cancer - Grape seeds contain proanthocyanidins which can prevent the development of cancer.

A study, published in the journal Molecular Nutrition & Food Research, found that grape seeds have properties that can reduce the severity of skin cancer. The researchers concluded that grape seed extracts "could be useful in the attenuation of the adverse UV-induced health effects in human skin."

•Cardiovascular benefits - The antioxidants in grape seed extract can potentially protect the blood vessels from becoming damaged, which may prevent high blood pressure.

According to one study, published in the journal Mutation Research/Fundamental and Molecular Mechanisms of Mutagenesis, "grape seed proanthocyanidin extract (GSPE) provides superior antioxidant efficacy as compared to Vitamins C, E and β-carotene."

•Reducing edema (swelling) - Taking grape seed extract can help reduce the swelling that occurs after an injury or surgery.

A double-blind, placebo-controlled study found that breast cancer patients who took 600 mg of grape seed extract every day for 6 months had less edema compared to those on placebo.

•Preventing cognitive decline - Grape seed extract is very high in proanthocyanidins (oligomers of monomeric polyphenols) which may prevent cognitive decline.

One study identified "a critical role for grape seed proanthocyanidin extract (GSPE) as a neuroprotectant in the hippocampus and in preventing cognitive loss with aging."


8 Amazing Benefits of Grapes

(Nigeria Today)

A healthy and well-balanced diet is key to living life to the fullest. Amidst our busy lives; however, none of us really take the time to think about what we use to fuel our bodies. Are we eating the right kinds of food to get us through the day? Are we filling ourselves with the proper nutrients? For the majority of us, we probably aren’t. Fortunately, we can solve this problem one baby step at a time, starting with a step as simple as eating a few grapes a day.

Grapes, you ask? Is that it?

Well, no, it will not solve all of your diet problem. However, striving towards a healthy lifestyle begins with healthy eating. It is not so commonly known that in terms of nutritional value, grapes are some of the most delicious, nutritious, and versatile fruits you can come across.

For those who have not already been enlightened with the extensive health benefits of grapes, here are a few reasons you may want to throw a few in your shopping basket during your next grocery shop.

1.) Aids the treatment of acne

An antioxidant derived from grapes known as resveratrol can prevent the growth of acne-causing bacteria. According to experts, the antioxidant in grapes, combined with prescribed treatments for acne such as benzyl peroxide, can provide effective treatment against acne.

2.) Promotes a healthy digestive system

The abundant presence of fiber and nutrients in grapes allow them to promote a healthy digestive system, assisting in the prevention of constipation and indigestion. A healthy intake of fiber promotes healthy bowel movement. For those lacking in daily fiber intake, grapes are a delicious and low GI way to fill those fiber needs.

3.) Grape seed extract

Grape seed extract (an industrial derivative of grape seeds) is abundant in therapeutic properties, such as the treatment of high cholesterol and the prevention of cancer. The inclusion of grape seed extract, as well as calcium, can improve bone strength and assist in the treatment of bone weakness from low calcium levels.

4.) Assists with management of asthma

A healthy and nutrient-filled diet has been proven to assist with the management of asthma. Studies show that children with a high consumption of fruits (such as grapes) are less likely to have asthma-like symptoms. A component in grape seed extract contains anti-inflammatory properties. Additionally, studies have also shown that grape seed extract improves lung function and increases lung capacity.

5.) Assists with management of diabetes

An extract derived from the skin of grapes (grape skin extract) can be developed and used to aid the management of diabetes. Studies also show that the low GI nature of grapes and grape products can provide health benefits for individuals suffering type-2 diabetes. Due to their high nutritional content and low calorie count, professionals recommend red and black grapes for diabetics.

6.) Lowers the risk of heart disease

Studies suggest that the consumption of grapes or other polyphenols (abundant micronutrients) is associated with a lower risk of heart disease. Grapes contain an extensive variety of polyphenol compounds (such as resveratrol). Daily intake of these nutrients assists with cardiovascular health.

7.) Cancer prevention and longevity

Grapes contain powerful natural chemicals which provide a variety of everyday health benefits, and are even known to assist in the slowing or prevention of cancer. According to studies, these chemicals have the potential to stop the spread of cancer cells. It is also believed that several grape phytonutrients play a role in an individual’s longevity.

8.) Helps protect eyesight

Not only do grapes aid in the prevention of cancer and treatment of diabetes, they are also beneficial for healthy eyesight. Research suggests that regular grape consumption protects retinal structure and function, as well as preventing retinal deterioration.



The Benefits of Grape Seed Extract

By Shelley Moore (LIVESTRONG.COM)

Grape seeds contain potent antioxidants, which are substances that neutralize and eliminate harmful free radicals. Some research, primarily with animals, indicates that standardized grape seed extracts may be useful for treating health problems related to free radical damage, according to the the University of Maryland Medical Center (UMMC). The UMMC advises using herbal therapy under the supervision of a health care provider qualified in botanical medicine.

Antioxidants

Vitamin E is an important antioxidant in grape seed, but even more powerful are the flavonoids called oligomeric proanthocyanidin complexes, or OPCs, according to the UMMC. Antioxidants destroy free radicals, which are waste products that develop from the conversion of food to energy and also occur in response to environmental toxins. Free radicals damage cells and genetic material and may contribute to aging and disease, including heart disease and cancer.

Blood Vessel Benefits

Evidence indicates a substantial health benefit for patients with chronic venous insufficiency who take grape seed extract, according to the University of Michigan Health System (UMHS). This disorder causes blood to pool in leg veins, leading to leg swelling and fatigue, as well as pain that worsens when walking. Grape seed extract also may be beneficial for treating varicose veins and capillary fragility, although research is not as consistent, notes the UMHS.

Additionally, the antioxidants in grape seed have a protective effect on blood vessels, which can help prevent high blood pressure. Animal research indicates that grape seed extract lowers blood pressure, according to the UMMC, but research on humans is lacking.

Anti-Cancer Effects

Grape seed antioxidants also may decrease the risk of developing cancer. Additionally, laboratory studies show that grape seed extract prevents the growth of various types of cancer in test tubes, according to the UMMC, including breast, colon, stomach, prostate and lung cancer. Grape seed extract also may protect the liver from cell damage caused by chemotherapy.

Side Effects

Grape seed extract is generally not associated with side effects, according to the UMHS, and excess is removed through urine. The most likely side effects include headache, dizziness, nausea and a dry, itchy scalp, according to the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine. Grape seed extract may have blood-thinning properties, which could increase the risk of bleeding if taken with blood thinning medications.

Usage

Grape seed is available as liquid extract and dried extract in capsules and tablets. The UMMC recommends buying extracts standardized to at least 40 percent proanthocyanidins or at least 95 percent OPCs. To protect against free radical damage, take 25 to 150mg one to three times daily, and for chronic venous insufficiency, take 150 to 300mg once per day. The UMMC advises that children as well as pregnant or breastfeeding women should not take grape seed supplements.


Grapeseed extract shows promise in prevention of cancer

By Patrick B. Massey (MD, PH.D.)

Albert Einstein once said "Look deep into nature, and then you will understand everything better."

In regards to the prevention and treatment of cancer, we are discovering that the foods we eat may have significant impact. A case in point is grapeseed extract.

Over the past 10 years, a number of medical studies have demonstrated that grapeseed extract, at least in animal models, can have significant impact on a number of different cancers. Although there are no compelling human clinical studies, grapeseed extract in the animal models of cancer are quite positive.

Grapeseed extract, as the name implies, comes from grapeseed. This particular product is very rich in a number of vitamins, as well as other biologically active compounds such as flavonoids, procyanidins and resveratrol.

Although most of the research into grapeseed extract has been done in animal models, grapeseed extract seems to have a positive effect throughout the entire body.

For example, in animals it has been shown to increase bone density. There is some data indicating that it also is effective at preventing tooth decay and reducing blood pressure. It does exhibit some antibacterial and antiviral activity in a test tube.

Most importantly, grapeseed extract seems to retard cancer cell growth both in the test tube and in animal models. A number of studies over the years have demonstrated that it inhibits the growth of cancer cell lines of lung, breast, prostate and colon cancers.

Some of the most interesting anticancer research has explored the aromatase-inhibiting activity of grapeseed extract and its effect on breast cancer cell growth. One older study published in 2006 demonstrated that grapeseed extract has significant aromatase-inhibiting activity and suppresses the growth of breast cancer cells in the mouse model for breast cancer.

Aromatase is an enzyme that, basically, converts testosterone into estrogen. Many types of breast cancer are stimulated by estrogen and have a very active aromatase enzyme system.

In traditional medicine some chemotherapy agents inhibit the activity of the aromatase enzyme and through that inhibition slow or prevent the growth of estrogen-sensitive breast cancer cells.

This 2006 study, published in Cancer Research, demonstrated that grapeseed extract has significant aromatase-inhibiting activity and greatly reduced the growth of breast cancer cells in mice that are genetically designed to develop breast cancer.

Since this study was published, dozens of other studies have demonstrated that many plants inhibit aromatase activity and may be beneficial for the prevention and treatment of a number of different cancers including breast cancer, colon cancer and prostate cancer.

Even though grapeseed extract may inhibit the growth of breast cancer cells, I do not endorse it as sole treatment for breast cancer.

In addition, there is always concern as to how grapeseed extract affects medications, even though the current data indicates that it is quite safe. A medical physician, board-certified in integrative medicine would be able to provide the best recommendations for the use of grapeseed extract during chemotherapy.


Grape Polyphenols Help Offset Negative Effects of High-fat Diet- Study

By Neelam (Heakth News Line)

Here’s good news for people who love to eat high-fat diet but often avoid it due to fear of health hazards associated with the fatty foods. Now, scientists have found a solution in the form of a natural compound that would allow you to eat what you love without worrying about the saturated fat in these foods.

A recent study has found that grape polyphenols can nullify the adverse negative effects of high fat diet.

Loaded with unique and diverse composition of nutrients and antioxidants called polyphenols, grapes are already known for their health-promoting benefits. Now, the novel research has revealed this little juicy fruit has the potential to negate the negative effects of high fat diet.

In two laboratory studies conducted at the University of North Carolina Greensboro, grapes polyphenols found to be effective in helping counter some of the adverse health consequences of consuming a saturated fat-rich diet.

In the first experiment, the research team discovered that for participants who consumed a high butter-fat diet (33 percent of energy from fat) plus 3 percent whole grapes for 11 weeks the percentage of overall body fat was lowered and subcutaneous fat deposits were reduced.

These reductions led to positive changes in intestinal microbes and health. For instance, it increased the number of some beneficial bacteria, decreased the number of less desirable bacterial strains as well as increased microbial diversity which is good for gut, and enhanced gut barrier function.

In the second experiment, the investigators asked participants to eat even higher fat diet (44 percent of energy from fat) loaded with multiple types of saturated fat, including lard, beef tallow, shortening, and butter for 16 weeks. For the study, the team tried to examine the impact of the high fat diet combined with extracts of either the polyphenol fraction of grapes or the non-polyphenol portion of grapes, as well as the high fat diet enriched with 5 percent whole grapes.

They found that the intake of high-fat diet enriched with grape polyphenols helped reduce the percentage of body fat, subcutaneous and visceral fat depots, and improved glucose tolerance and enhanced intestinal barrier function.

On the other hand, high fat diet plus the 5 percent whole grapes did not appear to improve the metabolic profile in this second study, it did improve the intestinal health though, by increasing microbial diversity and minimizing the number of harmful bacteria in the intestinal tract.

“These two studies suggest that grapes and grape polyphenols may help offset a number of the adverse effects of consuming a high fat diet and trigger improvements in intestinal or systemic health,” said lead investigator Michael McIntosh. “This is an exciting area of health that merits further study.”

Findings from the study were published recently in the Journal of Nutritional Biochemistry.



The Next Amazing Health Food: The Seeds Of Wine Grapes

By Dan Nosowitz

There are plenty of studies looking into the mystical healing properties of wine (and plenty of anecdotal studies we could give you about the deliciousness and fun-to-drinkedness of wine). But a new crop of research, including a one published in AgResearch Magazine, focus not on the fermented juice but on the seeds.

Wine grapes, unlike table grapes, almost all have seeds in them; if you’re going to be mashing them for juice, the seeds are going to be discarded anyway, so there’s not much point in selectively breeding the seeds out of them. Those seeds actually have a few benefits; they can be pressed to make grapeseed oil, or they can be fed to livestock as a cheap source of pretty decent fats and proteins. But they aren’t really consumed by humans that much. But maybe they should be!

Wallace Yokoyama, a chemist for the USDA’s Agricultural Research Service, has, among other projects, been working on the possible nutritional and health benefits of grape seeds for a few years now. Yokoyama has been feeding food to rats that’s “spiked,” according to the release, with flour made from pulverized grape seeds. The flours were provided by WholeVine Products, a Sonoma, California, company that sells oils, cookies, and flours made from both the seeds and the skins of Sonoma grapes.

A previous study found that chardonnay seeds—not the seeds of red wine grapes as you might expect—have the highest levels of flavinoids and anti-inflammatory compounds of the varieties tested. That previous study found that chardonnay seed flour, even stripped of its oils, is able to lower the levels of LDL (the bad kind of cholesterol) in the lab animals. The team’s new research focuses on the makeup of the rats’ gut bacteria and how that’s affected by the chemicals in the grape seed flour. They’ve found, according to Yokoyama, “a dramatic decrease in the numbers of gut bacteria,” which the team links to decreases in obesity, diabetes, and cholesterol.

Who knows? Someday soon you may be finding grape seed flour cookies on store shelves near you.


Grape extract kills cancer cells

(BBC News)

An extract from grape seeds can destroy cancer cells, US research suggests.

In lab experiments, scientists found that the extract stimulated leukaemia cells to commit suicide.

Within 24 hours, 76% of leukaemia cells exposed to the extract were killed off, while healthy cells were unharmed, Clinical Cancer Research reports.

The study raises the possibility of new cancer treatments, but scientists said it was too early to recommend that people eat grapes to ward off cancer.

Grape seeds contain a number of antioxidants, including resveratrol, which is known to have anti-cancer properties, as well as positive effect on the heart.

Previous research has shown grapeseed extract has an effect on skin, breast, bowel, lung, stomach and prostate cancer cells in the laboratory.

It can also reduce the size of breast tumours in rats and skin tumours in mice.

However, the University of Kentucky study is the first to test its impact on a blood cancer.

Lead researcher Professor Xianglin Shi said: "These results could have implications for the incorporation of agents such as grapeseed extract into prevention or treatment of haematological (blood) malignancies and possibly other cancers.

"What everyone seeks is an agent that has an effect on cancer cells but leaves normal cells alone, and this shows that grapeseed extract fits into this category."

The researchers exposed leukaemia cells to grape extract in a range of different doses.

Apoptosis

One of the higher doses produced a marked effect, causing large numbers of the cells to commit suicide in a process known as apoptosis.

This is a natural method of getting rid of damaged and potentially dangerous cells.

When the mechanism behind apoptosis breaks down, cancerous cells can survive and multiply.

The researchers found grapeseed extract activates a protein called JNK which helps to regulate apoptosis.

When they exposed the leukaemia cells to an agent that inhibits JNK, the grapeseed extract effect was cancelled out.

Silencing the gene that makes JNK also blocked the extract's ability to kill cancer cells.

Kat Arney, Cancer Research UK's senior cancer information officer, warned against jumping to firm conclusions.

She said: "This is yet another story highlighting the potential cancer-fighting properties of naturally-occurring chemicals.

"Although interesting, it's still a long way from being a treatment that we can give to patients."


Reaping the benefits of grapeseed oil

By Avantika Bhuyan

A new study suggests that it may be healthier than olive oil

The one question that has baffled and needled fitness enthusiasts for eternity is: which oil is the best for you? Our kitchen shelves have seen oils come and go -the oil regime shifting from years of greasy vanaspati to the era of clear vegetable oils and finally settling on to the rule of the olive oil. However, if a new study is to be believed, there is an oil that is healthier than olive oil, and that's grapeseed. Imbued with linoleic acid, the lipids found in grapeseed oil lower the risk of diabetes and heart disease. These lipids are, however, missing in olive oil, suggests the study conducted by researchers at the Ohio State University, which

Pictures of Grape Seed/Grapes