Many people are skeptical about grape seed extract, because of its reputation as a miracle cure for so many different conditions, and they say that the claims made about grape seed extract are too good to be true. Grape seed extract is said to be helpful for cancer, cardiovascular disease, high cholesterol, arthritis, skin disorders (including skin cancer), and for strengthening the immune system. Some manufacturers even claim that it will extend a person's life span. Most of these benefits have not been studied; however, the benefits of grapes and grape-based products for the circulatory system have been demonstrated in clinical trials, and research has shown grape seed extract to be useful for speeding the process of healing wounds. Wrinkles are not wounds, but the wound healing research suggests that grape seed extract may have a strong effect on skin cells. There is no research demonstrating that grape seed extract can prevent or reduce the appearance of wrinkles, but there is some research suggesting that it may prevent sun-related skin damage.
Grape seed Extract as a Treatment for Wrinkles
- Buy capsules of grape seed extract, and take orally. There is no daily recommended amount for grape seed extract, but some experts recommend taking between 25–150 mg, one to three times daily.
- Use a cream containing grape seed extract, and massage it into your skin once or twice a day.
- Start with red grapes, and process them in a food processor. Apply to your face, and leave on for 15-20 minutes. Rinse.
Why It Works
Grape seed extract contains proanthocyanidin, the same antioxidant that can also be found in grapes, grape juice, and red wine. Proanthocyanidins have been shown to strengthen the capillaries, help maintain the elasticity of the skin, and help stabilize collagen levels in the skin. Some normal degradation of skin cells is caused by the enzyme elastase, which is released when the skin is damaged or inflamed (such as when the skin is sunburned). Grape seed extract is thought to block the activity of elastase in the skin. It is also known to improve circulation, which helps all the cells and organs in the body to maintain better health. Grape seed extract also contains alpha hydroxy acids, which are commonly used in skin care products to help exfoliate dead skin cells.
No supplement or skin cream can make up for decades of damage done to the skin by poor diet and exposure to the sun. One of the main causes of wrinkles is damage caused by years of sunbathing. If you are worried about skin health, supplements and creams containing antioxidants will help, but it is equally important to eat a nourishing, balanced diet, and drink plenty of water.
Grape seed extract is well tolerated by most people whether it is taken orally or topically. It has been used safely for up to eight weeks at a time in clinical trials. A few people, though, develop side effects from taking it. Side effects include headache, dry and itchy scalp, dizziness, and nausea. Some people are allergic to grapes; if you are, or suspect you may be, allergic, then you may want to try doing a patch test on your skin before using topical products containing grape seed extract more extensively.