OPCs (oligomeric proanthocyanidins) are a type of flavonol consisting of catechin and epicatechin polymers. Proanthocyanidins are among nature’s most powerful antioxidants and are found in a wide range of fruits and plants, including in the seeds and skins of grapes as well as in berries, citrus fruits and the protective bark layer of trees.
For a long time, the only oligomeric proanthocyanidins considered bioactive were dimers and trimers, i.e. oligomers with 2 and 3 units. However, increasing doubts have resulted in a new appreciation for the complex relationship between all the ingredients found in grape seed and pine bark extracts. Both pine bark and grape seeds contain large amounts of OPC, each with a different spectrum of proanthocyanidins. Grape seed extract, but not pine bark extract, contains significant amounts of the important proanthocyanidin B3-3'-O-gallate, while pine bark extract contains high amounts of taxifolin; only when combined do the two extracts offer a full range of effects.
Each capsule also contains 50mg of vitamin C. This vitamin is naturally occuring in pine bark, grapes and other sources of oligomeric proanthocyanidins. OPCs are not particularly bioavailable, so combining them with vitamin C can be very helpful.
Health Benefits of Vitamin C
According to the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), vitamin C contributes to:
- The reduction of tiredness and fatigue
- Normal cognitive function
- The regeneration of the reduced form of vitamin E
- Normal energy metabolism
- Normal immune system function
- The normal function of the nervous system
- Protecting cells against oxidative stress
- Normal collagen formation for normal blood vessel function
- Normal collagen formation for normal bone function
- Normal collagen formation for normal cartilage function
- Normal collagen formation for normal dental function
- Normal collagen formation for normal gum function
- Normal collagen formation for normal skin function
- Iron absorption
- Maintaining normal immune system function both during and after intense physical activity