High Blood Pressure: Blood is naturally under pressure as the heart forces it around the circulation, with hypertension the pressure is above the normal limits. There may be no symptoms with hypertension at first but over time can increase risk of disorders such as stroke, heart disease and kidney failure. High blood pressure cannot be cured but it can be reduced and controlled, often a change in diet and lifestyle may be all that is necessary to reduce blood pressure. Currently 50 million Americans have hypertension, approximately 20% of the population.
Factors of Hypertension: There are no obvious causes for hypertension, however factors that can increase the risk are.
* Sedentary Lifestyle - Increases risk of cardiovascular disease (60% of Americans do not get enough exercise).
* Genetic Factors - There are gene variants associated with increased risk of hypertension.
* Family history - Having a parent or close relative with hypertension increases your risk.
* Ethnicity - hypertension tends to affect African Americans with greater frequency.
* Obesity - Being overweight increases risk of heart disease, hypertension, and stroke.
* Alcohol - Drinking excessive amounts of alcohol can increase your risk. (More than 1 drink per day for women and 2 per day for men).
* Smoking - A major factor for developing high blood pressure and cardiovascular disease.
* High salt diet
* Age - The risk of hypertension increases with age, men tend to develop between the ages of 35 and 55, and women after menopause
Naturally Reduce Blood Pressure with Pycnogenol:
Study 1: Researchers including Dr. David Fitzpatrick of the University of South Florida and Dr. Lester Packer of the University of California, Berkley have conducted research on pycnogenol and nitric oxide, and how it naturally optimizes the levels of nitric oxide production in the blood vessels to facilitate blood flow and reduce blood pressure. It naturally helps the body produce adequate levels of nitric oxide for necessary functions, and can also reduce the levels of nitric oxide where it does harm. Pycnogenol has a mild hypotensive effect that helps prevent or reduce hypertension naturally. (Fitzpatrick et al., 1998)
Study 2: Dr Miklos and his colleagues at the Albert Szent-Gyorgyi Medical University in Szeged, Hungry and Dr. Peter Rohdewald of the University of Muenster, Germany In their study published in 1996 in the Pharmaceutical and Pharmacological Letters, described the hypotensive effect of pycnogenol as "moderate". Pycnogenol naturally helps the heart by blocking some action of the angio-tensin I converting enzyme (ACE) in causing hypertension. People with lower or normal blood pressure will not be affected and those with hypertension and too much ACE will benefit
Naturally Reduce Blood Pressure with Grape Seed Extract: Scientist for the University of California, Davis did a 4 week study on 24 patients. One group was given a placebo treatment, a second group was given 150mg of grape seed extract, and a third group was given 300mg of grape seed extract. At the end of the four week study blood pressure was reduced in all patients taking the grape seed extract, blood pressure did not change in the placebo group. On average Systolic blood pressure dropped 12 points, and the diastolic dropped 8 points. Both doses were equally efficient in naturally reducing the blood pressure. (American Chemical Society National Meeting & Exposition, Atlanta, March 26-30, 2006)
Reduce side effects of antihypertensive medications:
Study 1: A study published in a 2006 issue of the Journal of Clinical and Applied Thrombosis/Hemostasis shows that pycnogenol can naturally reduce edema by 36 percent, a common side effect of high blood pressure medications. The results of the study show pycnogenol naturally improves circulation, this avoids blood pooling and can reduce edema.
Study 2: In 2004 Dr. X. Liu confirmed that pycnogenol naturally improved the endothelial function of hypertensive patients and allowed those on antihypertensive drugs to reduce their dosage. (Life Science, 2004)
Best Source of Pycnogenol and Grape Seed Extract: A natural supplement Isotonix OPC-3 (Oligomeric Proanthocyanidins) is an isotonic-capable food supplement that is made from a combination of bilberry, grape seed extract, red wine, pine bark extracts and citrus extract bioflavonoids, all found to be potent antioxidants. Isotonix OPC-3 contains the only isotonic form of Pycnogenol in the world.