Scientific studies have shown that OPC, which stands for oligomeric proanthocyanidins, is one of the most powerful antioxidant free radical scavengers known to man. After decades of research, OPC has been given the official recognition and distinction as “Vitamin P.”
Additionally, this extraordinary nutrient has been scientifically proven to be 50 times more effective than Vitamin E and 20 times more effective than Vitamin C as a free radical scavenger. OPC is 100% bioavailable in humans, can be found in the blood within 20 minutes, and remains in the body for up to 72 hours. Unlike other anti-oxidants, OPC has a unique ability to cross the blood brain barrier providing direct protection to the brain and the central nervous system.
Extensive testing has proved OPC to be non-toxic, noncarcinogenic, non-antigenic, and non-tetratogenic (no birth defects). Professor Jacques Masquelier of Bordeaux University discovered OPC in 1951. After more than 40 years of extensive clinical, analytical, toxicological and pharmacokinetic studies, OPC has never provoked a toxic effect.
In comparing OPC derived from its two predominant sources, grape seed and pine bark, grape seed has a higher OPC content than pine bark and grape seed also contains gallic esters. Gallic esters are also powerful anti-oxidants found in grapes, which work together with OPC. This synergistic blend is only available from OPC derived from grape seed.
OPC is also a Vitamin C potentiator, meaning OPC supports Vitamin C’s function in the body. Some antioxidants are protectors of other antioxidants, some increase the potential of others and some can even regenerate other antioxidants. OPC protects Vitamin C, thus delivering more Vitamin C to the cells for nourishment.
As an effective antioxidant, OPCs help our body resist blood vessel and skin damage, mental deterioration, inflammation and other damages caused by harmful free radicals. However, their function is more than protection. They help repair by improving and stabilizing the skin protein collagen and improving the condition of arteries and capillaries.
OPCs have four biochemical properties which are beneficial to our body:
1. free radical scavenging
2. collagen binding
3. inhibition of inflammatory enzymes
4. inhibition of histamine formation