The Anti-aging Benefits of Pycnogenol
Pycnogenol. This herb is a powerful anti-oxidant capable of reducing free-radical tissue damage. Pycnogenol is much more effective than vitamins E, C, Carotene, Selenium.
In the winter of 1535 the French fleet of explorer Jacques Cartier, lay frozen solid at the mouth of what is now known as the St. Lawrence River in Canada. Adding to their plight, scurvy broke out resulting in the death of 25 crew members. As their provisions dwindled the remaining crew went onto the Quebec Peninsula to hunt and trap game, but without fresh fruit and vegetables they were in danger of dying from scurvy and malnutrition.
The remaining 85 crew members, growing weaker, were eventually rescued by friendly Quebec Indians. The Indians being experts on the medicinal properties of plants and trees offered them a tea made with the needles and bark of pine trees growing in the area.
Unsure of the results of the tea, the cure was given to only two of the sickest crew members, who began showing recovery so fast that within a week the tea was given to all the crew members with lifesaving results.
Four hundred years later, a research professor named Jacques Masquelier, visiting Quebec to study flavonols in pine bark and grape skins, learned of Cartier’s experience which had been chronicled in his journal, “Bref récit et succincte narration de la navigation faite en MDXXXV et MDXXXVI.”
With continued research he discovered that the Maritime Pine used by Cartier and his crew, which grows along the southern coast of France. Through his research, Masquelier “found that the maratime Pine Bark contained a blend of flavonols called proanthocyanidins which he later patented under the name Pycnogenol (Ritchason 175).”
Pycnogenol is a blend of special bioflavonoid, called proanthocyanidins.
“Proanthocyanidin, a powerful anti-oxidant, reduces free-radical caused tissue damage, is many times more effective than vitamin E, C. Carotene, Selenium or any other known source of flavonols.” Examples of free radicals are: “alcohol, cigarette smoke, air and water pollutants, pesticides used in gardening, fried foods, household cleaners, radiation, anesthetics, physical or emotional stress, coffee, ultra-violet rays from tanning lamps, microwave ovens, electro-magnetic fields and powerlines (176).”
Pycnogenol has cosmetic value by attacking free radicals, which makes it an anti-aging tonic. It reduces inflammation of the lymphatic system, and by restoring collagen, pycnogenol helps return flexibility to skin, joints, arteries, capillaries and other tissues.
Pycnogenol has also been successful for allergies, atherosclerosis, cancer, circulatory problems, diabetic retinopathy, heart disease and many others. It can be purchased in the form of capsules at most vitamin supply stores and on the Internet.
Pychnogelol can be taken orally or used in a topical creme. This wonderful natural discovery offers the potential to improve your overall quality of life, however, this article is for your reference only and you should always seek the advice of your doctor before considering using any natural or commercial products.
References: Ritchason, Jack, N.D., “The Little Herb Encyclopedia,” Woodland Publishing, 1994.
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