How Does OPC Pine Bark Help Your Health?How Does OPC Pine Bark Help Your Health?

OPC or Oligomeric Proanthocyanidin is a powerful antioxidant that can be isolated from the bark of a coastal pine known as Pinus maritima. This plant is widespread in Europe and is claimed to be twenty times more potent in eliminating free radicals than vitamin C and 50 times more than vitamin E. Proanthocyanidin is a special class of antioxidant which can cross the blood - brain barrier to scavenge free radicals in the nervous system. It is found to be water soluble but can stay in the bloodstream for almost three days. As we know for a fact, antioxidants are required for the protection of cells against damage caused by toxins and other harmful metabolism end products.

Aside from it antioxidant property, OPC Pine Bark also has many other health benefits which include:

1. Anti-inflammatory Property. Studies show that OPC extract is effective in alleviating swelling and pain associated with inflammation. Inflammation is also manifested with pain, redness and loss of function of the affected area.

2. Prevents Collagen Destruction. Collagen is one of the most important proteins in the body. It is highly required for the formation and maintenance of the integrity of body fluids, mucus membranes and connective tissues like the tendons, ligaments, cartilage and blood vessels. Studies show that OPC helps prevent collagen destruction by protecting the collagen component from damage caused by free radicals.

3. Improved Brain Function. Adjunct to Vitamin C, OPC aids in the synthesis of neurotransmitters such as norepinephrine, dopamine and serotonin. These neurochemicals are important for the improvement of learning abilities, memory and logic. It can also improve brain circulation thus further facilitating a healthy brain function.

4. Maintaining Normal Cholesterol Levels. Aside from trapping free radicals, OPC is also discovered to eliminate lipid peroxides and greatly delays the onset of peroxidation. Lipid is a class of cholesterol which may be harmful to the body in high levels. Thus, OPC can also be used in effectively decreasing the risk of cholesterol - associated diseases such as atherosclerosis.

5. Promoting Normal Blood Pressure. According to studies, OPC has the capacity to inhibit Angiotensin - 1 Converting Enzyme or ACE. This enzyme is needed to convert the inactive Angiotensin - 1 into its activated form which is Angiotensin - 2. Angiotensin - 2 has an aldosterone - stimulating property. Aldosterone is then released by the adrenal glands and stimulates the nephrons of the kidneys to increase sodium reabsorption. And since water is highly attracted to sodium, water follows sodium ions thus increasing the volume in the blood and in turn, increasing the blood pressure. Therefore, if OPC can help inhibit such enzyme, blood pressure will be regulated

6. Healthy Glowing Skin. As mentioned above, OPC is a potent antioxidant. As an antioxidant, it has the capacity to delay the so - called aging process in which the most visible signs manifested are on the skin. Collagen is also required for the younger look of your skin.

7. Enhancement of Immune System Functions. OPC contains many chemicals that can improve the functioning of the immune system. Therefore, experts suggest that those people who have autoimmune diseases should not take OPC Pine Bark extracts since it can boost the actions of the immune system thus worsening the immune system - induced disorder.

If you have not considered pine bark extract, maybe it is time too?
by Darrell Miller
References and Bibliography
Boost your health with OPC Pine Bark Extract at VitaNet ®, LLC Vitamin Store.
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