Grapeseed Oil Benefits, Side Effects and Information

Grapeseed Oil Benefits, Uses, Side Effects, Facts and Information

Grapeseed oil is extracted from the seeds of grapes, typically wine grapes. Since grape seeds are usually discarded as part of the wine making process, the extraction and sale of grapeseed oil can be a profitable sideline, as well as an efficient use of a byproduct. In the twentieth century, grapeseed oil began to be processed and sold in much higher volume, primarily in the United States and Europe. Many stores sell pure grapeseed oil for various applications.

Because each seed yields a small amount of oil, grapeseed oil is usually extracted chemically. The chemical extraction does have an impact on the flavor of the oil, but it makes grapeseed oil affordable for people who want to purchase it. The oil is known for being light in color and flavor, with a hint of nuttiness. It is a polyunsaturated oil, and contains beneficial compounds such as linoleic acid.

There are two primary uses for grapeseed oil: cosmetics and culinary applications. When purchasing grapeseed oil to use in food, make sure that it is clearly marked as food grade. Some cosmetic grapeseed oils are stabilized with chemicals which could be harmful to consume. Like other oils, grapeseed oil should be stored in a cool dark place until it is used, unless it has been heavily stabilized. For people who use it rarely, refrigeration is best. Although grapeseed oil may congeal slightly, it will go rancid much more slowly when kept in the fridge.

In foods, grapeseed oil has numerous uses. It has a very high smoking point, so many people use grapeseed oil to fry foods. It can also be included in dressings and sauces, and since it emulsifies very well, it does not generally separate when used to make things like mayonnaise. The flavor is also unobtrusive, allowing diners to focus on the main component of the dish. Culinary grapeseed oil can also be flavored with the addition of things like peppers, truffle shavings, and herbs.

In cosmetics, grapeseed oil is widely used. It is often combined with other oils to make massage oil, since it glides well on the skin and it also has moisturizing properties. Grapeseed oil appears to assist with skin repair, as it has mildly astringent and antiseptic qualities. Some companies use grapeseed oil as a short term natural preservative in body products, while others integrate it into moisturizing creams, sunscreen, and an assortment of other products.

Grapeseed Oil Benefits

Grape seed oil has several important health benefits. It is a good source of essential fatty acids and vitamin E. The polyphenols and flavonoids found in this oil contain strong antioxidant compounds. Most of the grape seed oil health benefits can be attributed to the presence of these nutrients. These health benefits of grape seed oil are enumerated below.

  • The flavonoid 'oligomeric procyanidin', found in grape seed oil is an incredibly strong antioxidant, about 50 times stronger than antioxidants like, vitamin C and E. So, this compound can provide protection against cellular and tissue damage caused by free radicals.

  • Grape seed oil can boost the health of the heart and the cardiovascular system by lowering the level of bad LDL cholesterol. This oil can increase the level of good HDL cholesterol, which can reduce the risk of coronary diseases. In addition, two studies showed that taking grapeseed extract and chromium, helped in lowering the bad cholesterol levels.

  • Grape seed oil contains linoleic acid, which is a polyunsaturated fatty acid that can prove beneficial for people having diabetes.

  • Grape seed oil can help strengthen and repair damaged or broken capillaries and blood vessels. This in turn, can help to improve circulation and alleviate conditions like, varicose veins, spider veins and hemorrhoids.

  • Grape seed oil has anti-inflammatory properties, for which it can provide relief against pain and swelling caused by arthritis. Even in conditions like, rheumatoid arthritis, this oil can provide great relief.

  • Many studies show that grape seed extracts help in preventing colon, prostate, stomach, breast and lung cancer cells. Antioxidants found in grapeseed extract, help in preventing cancer.

  • Grape seed oil can also prove beneficial in conditions like, asthma, allergies, acne and dermatitis.

  • The oil from grapeseed reduces LDL (bad Cholesterol) and increases HDL (good cholesterol), which in turn helps in keeping your arteries clear.

  • Omega-3, Omega-6, and Omega-9 are the fatty acids found in this oil. These fatty acids benefit us by forestalling any heart diseases and influence the biological properties in our body.

  • Grape seed oil contains high levels of Vitamin E, which is a fat-soluble antioxidant. It aids in preventing any cell membrane related injuries.

  • The oil from grapeseed helps the immune system and increases the blood circulation as well.

  • After any surgery or an injury, the oil reduces the swelling faster than any other medicines.

  • Flavonoids found in grape seed oil work to inflect cell-signaling pathways. Oregon State University states, "The Flavonoids have an antioxidant behavior that responds to iron and copper that bond to proteins".

  • Grapeseed is mildly astringent in nature and helps to tighten and tone skin.

  • Grapeseed contains proanthocyanidins, which are very potent antioxidants, that help in diminishing the sun's damaging effects and lessen free radical damage.

  • Grapeseed oil is also helpful for healing wounds. It is rich in linoleic acid levels, which is an essential fatty acid that is quite important for the skin and cell membranes.

  • Grapeseed oil has great moisturizing properties.

  • Grapeseed oil is also rich in vitamins, minerals and causes no skin irritation.

Grape Seed Oil For Skin Care

Many people use grape seed oil for skin, basically for its emollient properties. This oil can be found in a wide range of cosmetics like, lip balm, creams, moisturizers, sunblocks and lotions. Even many hair care products contain this oil. You can use grape seed oil for hair to promote hair growth, and make it smooth and soft. Due to its antioxidant properties, grape seed oil can delay skin aging by minimizing the damage caused by free radicals.

Grape seed oil can provide protection against sun damage as well. It has astringent properties and therefore, can tighten the skin. The linoleic acid found in grape seed oil can be very beneficial in skin conditions like, acne, dermatitis and eczema. Linoleic acid can soothe and nourish the skin, and help it to repair. Vitamin E on the other hand, keeps the skin firm and smooth. Grape seed oil is easily absorbed by the body, and it can be used for reducing age spots, sun burn, wrinkles and stretch marks as well.

Grapeseed Oil Side Effects

Short-term treatment with appropriate doses of grape seed oil extract typically does not elicit side effects. Health professionals at the University of Maryland Medical Center recommend limiting your treatment with grape seed oil extract to no more than 12 weeks to lower your risk of developing side effects.

Mild side effects associated with grape seed oil extract include elevated blood pressure, dizziness, headache, nausea and indigestion, reports the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine. Additionally, you may notice that your scalp appears unusually dry or flaky and itches profusely. If any of these side effects become severe or persist, contact your doctor for further evaluation and care.

People allergic to grapes may not be able to use this oil, while those taking anticoagulant drugs and medications to lower cholesterol and blood pressure should better confirm with their physician before using any kind of grape seed extract including, grape seed oil for medicinal purposes. This supplement may also enhance the effects of blood thinners such as warfarin. Use of grape seed oil extract when you are taking blood thinners may increase your risk of developing bleeding complications.
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