This final part of my “Pycnogenol Benefits” article flows through many more potential uses for this natural supplement. I end with my final thoughts on this special extract from pine tree bark.
Benefits of Pycnogenl: #1 Edema During Flights
The goal of one study was to evaluate whether or not Pycnogenol could prevent edema (fluid build-up) during long-haul flights in healthy people. There were 88 in the control group and 81 in the Pycnogenol group. In those treated with Pycnogenol, the edema score was increased by 17.9% versus an increase of 58.3% in the control group. Not bad.
Benefits of Pycnogenl: #2 Retinopathy
A total of 40 patients with retinopathy (damage to the retina part of the eye) from diabetes and other vascular causes were enrolled in one study. Thirty patients were treated with 150 mg of Pycnogenol a day and the other 10 patients with placebo for a period of two months. In the placebo group, the retinopathy worsened; whereas, in the Pycnogenol-treated group, there was no deterioration.
Benefits of Pycnogenl: #3 ADHD
In a good-quality study, 24 adults aged 24 to 53 years old with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) were given Pycnogenol, placebo, or the standard drug for three weeks. Results failed to show any efficacy of Pycnogenol or methylphenidate when compared to placebo. The authors attributed the negative results to the short duration of treatment and the low dosages of drug or Pycnogenol.
In another study, 61 children with ADHD were given one mg per kg/day of Pycnogenol or placebo over four weeks. Results showed that one month of Pycnogenol led to a significant reduction of hyperactivity with improvement in attention and visual-motor coordination and concentration, as compared to no positive effects in the placebo group. After stopping Pycnogenol for one month, symptoms
Benefits of Pycnogenl: #4 Menopausal Syndrome
Symptoms of menopausal syndrome, also known as climacteric syndrome, include: hot flashes; chills; headache; and depression. In this study, 155 peri-menopausal women were enrolled in a double-blind,
placebo-controlled study. They were treated with 200 mg of Pycnogenol daily or with placebo. Pycnogenol-treated subjects experienced an improvement in all menopausal symptoms.
Some Proven Health Benefits of Pycnogenl
- Pycnogenol alleviated adverse effects in cancer patients
- Pycnogenol improved working memory in older adults
- Pycnogenol lowered the use of analgesic drugs in dysmenorrhea (severe menstrual pain)
- Pycnogenol reduced symptoms in endometriosis comparable to leuprorelin, the standard drug for this condition
- Pycnogenol was found to be effective for sun-caused hyperpigmented skin
- Pycnogenol reduced the inflammation in lupus patients
- Pycnogenol lowered blood pressure
- Pycnogenol lowered LDL cholesterol
- Pycnogenol reduced gingival bleeding and plaque formation
My bottom line
Although the preliminary studies show many health benefits with the use of Pycnogenol, future larger and better studies are needed. While much of this is positive, it will be a while before doctors routinely recommend this dietary supplement for these conditions. Talk to your own doctor about Pycnogenol if you’re interested in using it for your own health.
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