- Indications with possible efficacy:
- Indications with possible, but poorly documented efficacy :
Chronic venous insufficiency
Decreasing ocular stress from glare
- Other indications with no proof of efficacy:
Improving night vision
Skin aging - antioxydant properties
- Risk of Drug Interactions: Low
- Adverse Effects: Rare
Part of the plant used: seed
Grape vine has been cultivated since the dawn of time. Today, it is found in all temperate climates around the globe. Grape seed oil is rich in essential fatty acids and vitamin E.
Oligo-proanthocyanidins (OPC) are potent antioxidant compounds. OPCs are found in the grape seed's envelope and are responsible for the pharmacological effects. Several standardized extract supplements are currently available on the market.
Direction of use
- Chronic venous insufficiency:
Grape seed extract may help relieve leg pain and tumefaction caused by venous insufficiency and varicose veins.
Used doses: 150 mg to 475 mg of OPC-standardized (80%) grape seed extract daily.
Used doses: a maximum of 475 mg of OPC-standardized (80%) grape seed extract daily.
There is insufficient reliable information to conclude that grape seed extract is effective in any other indication.
- Side effects
Grape seed is not associated with any specific toxicity and there has been no report of adverse effects.
Grape seed extract may interact with oral anticoagulants, such as Coumadin, and increase the effects of antiplatelet agents. Bleeding risks may be increased.
- Pregnancy and breastfeeding
Since there is no safety data available concerning its use during pregnancy and breast-feeding, pregnant and lactating women should not take grape seed extract.
- OPC has interesting properties, but available information is insufficient to conclude to its efficacy. The product may be extracted from grape seed, peanut skins and pine bark (Pycnogenol).
In 2004, Canada adopted new regulations that control the manufacturing, packaging, labeling and importing of natural health products. The new regulations also include an adverse reaction reporting system. Products that conform to the regulation's criteria are identified with a natural product number (NPN) and can be legally sold in Canada. This number indicates that the product meets specific criteria for safety and purity, not that it is effective for any indication.
Medicinal plant contents vary naturally from plant to plant - just as fruits from the same package may vary in taste and texture. There is no standard to measure the active content of each plant. Thus, efficacy of natural products should be expected to vary from brand to brand as well as from bottle to bottle of the same brand.
For more information about the Natural Health Products Regulations, or to check if a product has been assessed, visit the Health Canada website at www.hc-sc.gc.ca/dhp-mps/prodnatur/index-eng.php.
- Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database, Therapeutic Research Faculty, 2010
- Passeportsanté.net. Vigne rouge. www.passeportsante.net
- Herbal Companion to AHFS DI, American Society of Health-System Pharmacists, 2001
- Taylor J. CE: Phytomedicinals: Uses, precautions, and drug interactions. Drug Topics 2003;1:79
- Natural Therapeutics Pocket Guide, 2000-2001
- The Review of Natural Products, 6th Edition, 2010
- Health Canada, Natural Products Database
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The patient information leaflets are provided by Vigilance Santé Inc. This content is for information purposes only and does not in any manner whatsoever replace the opinion or advice of your health care professional. Always consult a health care professional before making a decision about your medication or treatment.