Grape Seed Extract helps lower blood pressure

March 31, 2006

Metabolic syndrome is a cluster of risk factors that increase the risk of developing diabetes and cardiovascular disease (hardening of the arteries) which occur together in one person. Metabolic syndrome is usually due to overeating poor food choices, not exercising, and to a degree, genetic factors. Having high LDL-cholesterol and triglycerides, insulin resistance, high blood pressure, a pro-inflammatory state, and obesity are characteristic of metabolic syndrome.

Scientists from the University of California, Davis carried out a human clinical trial using various dosages of Grape Seed or placebo on both men and women with diagnosed metabolic syndrome. They were placed on either 150mg or 300mg of Grape Seed Extract, or placebo. At the end of one month it was found that all of those on Grape Seed Extract had a significant drop in their elevated blood pressure with the systolic pressure dropping 12 mm Hg on average and the diastolic pressure dropping 8 mm Hg on average (systole/diastole). Also for the individuals on the higher potency Grape Seed extract there was a good drop in the level of oxidized LDL-cholesterol. The study was presented at the recent American Chemical Society Meeting in Atlanta.

Studies show it is not the caffeine which helps decrease the risk of developing diabetes but probably the polyphenols.

More evidence that Resveratrol helps prevent kidney damage

Rhabdomyolysis is a painful destruction of muscle fibers causing the release of muscle content into the circulation. Levels of Creatine kinase (or CCK - an enzyme that creates energy in the muscle) and myoglobin (the oxygen carrying protein in muscle that functions like hemoglobin) increase in the blood. These patients generally feel muscle tenderness and muscle aching.The urine can become dark or cola colored. Rhabdomyolysis leads to kidney damage, kidney failure, and death. Rhabdomyolysis accounts for 10% to 40% of all cases of sudden kidney failure (acute renal failure). Statin drugs that reduce cholesterol have caused rhabdomyolysis and then death in some patients. In this study a large amount of a chemical was injected into rats to cause acute renal failure due to rhabdomyolysis. Injury to the kidney was assessed by measuring the level of plasma creatinine, blood urea nitrogen, and blood creatinine (not the supplement creatine) in the plasma and by urea clearance by the kidneys.Giving Resveratrol supplementation 60 minutes before injecting the chemical markedly decreased damage to kidney tissue, a drop in kidney function, and production of inflammatory free radicals, while improving antioxidant enzyme levels in the kidneys (protective levels of glutathione, glutathione reductase, catalase, and superoxide dismutase). The study is published in the current issue of the journal Renal Failure (2006;28[2]).