Background: Pycnogenol is a bark extract from the French maritime pine (Pinus pinaster) consisting of a mixture of bioflavonoids. Bioflavonoids are also components of a wide variety of edible plants, fruits, and vegetables and act as antioxidants and iron chelators. Pycnogenol is a mixture of water-soluble procyanidins, catechin, taxifolin, and phenolcarbonic acids. It has been used as a dietary supplement for years. Hypertension, or a blood pressure higher than 140/90 mm Hg, is the most common risk factor for cardiovascular and cerebrovascular morbidity and mortality. Purpose: The aim of the study was to test a possible protective effect of oral Pycnogenol, administrated for eight weeks to non-smoking, mildly hypertensive patients. Methods: Pycnogenol, 200 mg/day, or placebo was provided to eleven subjects (seven men and four women) with systolic blood pressure of 140-159 mm Hg in a double blind, randomized, cross-over study and/or diastolic blood pressure of 90-99 mm Hg for eight weeks. The subject's blood pressure was taken during supplementation, and the serum level of thromboxane was measured. Results: A significant decrease in the systolic blood pressure was observed during Pycnogenol supplementation. However, Pycnogenol's lowering of diastolic blood pressure did not reach statistical significance when compared to placebo. Serum thromboxane concentration was significantly (p < 0.05) decreased during Pycnogenol supplementation.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
- Nutrition and Dietetics