OPC Grape Seed Extract is a popular dietary supplement made from the seeds of grapes. It is often touted as an antioxidant and to promote heart, brain, and skin health. However, as with all supplements, there are risks and side effects to be aware of.
What is OPC Grape Seed Extract?
OPC (oligomeric proanthocyanidins) is a herbal active ingredient that is found in many plants, but especially in the seeds of grapes. It is often referred to as an antioxidant that protects cells from free radicals and promotes blood circulation. OPC Grape Seed Extract is sold as a dietary supplement and is available in a variety of dosages and forms such as tablets , capsules, and powder .
Risks of OPC Grape Seed Extract
As with any dietary supplement, there are risks that should be considered. Here are some of the most common risks of OPC grape seed extract:
- Interactions with drugs: OPC grape seed extract can affect the effects of drugs, especially blood thinners and antihypertensives. It's important to talk to a doctor before taking OPC grape seed extract if you're already taking any medication.
- Allergic Reactions: OPC Grape Seed Extract may cause allergic reactions, particularly in people who are allergic to grapes. Symptoms can include a rash, itching, swelling, and difficulty breathing.
- Gastrointestinal Disorders: OPC grape seed extract can cause gastrointestinal disorders such as nausea, diarrhea, and abdominal pain.
- Pregnancy and lactation: There is insufficient information on whether OPC grape seed extract is safe to take during pregnancy and lactation. It is therefore recommended not to take it.
Side Effects of OPC Grape Seed Extract
- skin rash
- Gastrointestinal problems such as nausea, diarrhea and abdominal pain
- sleep disorders
- low blood pressure
- Bleeding tendency
It is important that you stop taking OPC grape seed extract immediately if you experience any of these side effects.
Official Health Claims
There are some official health claims on OPC grape seed extract, endorsed by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA). Here are some examples:
- OPC Grape Seed Extract helps maintain normal skin health.
- OPC grape seed extract supports normal collagen formation.
- OPC grape seed extract contributes to the normal functioning of the immune system.
- OPC grape seed extract contributes to normal blood circulation.
OPC grape seed extract can offer a number of benefits as a dietary supplement, but it's important to keep the risks and side effects in mind. If you are already taking medication or are pregnant, you should consult your doctor before taking OPC grape seed extract. If you notice any side effects, you should stop taking it immediately.