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One of the natural ingredients found in the pine forests of southern France that is quite a revolution in treatment of inflammatory conditions, along with other health benefits, is Pycnogenol. Pycnogenol is the patented trademark that is an extract from the barks of maritime pine trees found exclusively in the Bordeaux region, representing Europe’s largest forest area. It is claimed that no chemicals are used in the forest in the form of pesticides or herbicides.

As a natural extract that has been extensively researched for a few decades now, Pycnogenol has resiliently displayed characteristics that have treated symptoms and disorders without causing many serious side effects. Known for its effective anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant properties, Pycnogenol is known to selectively bind to collagen and elastin and has been found to stimulate the production of endothelial nitric oxide, which has a positive effect on cardiovascular health.

Pycnogenol Protects against Free Radicals: Free radicals are one of the prime reasons for damages caused to cells and tissues. Anti-oxidants control the action of free radicals and prevent damage to cell walls and organs. Pycnogenol is a super anti-oxidant that controls all free radicals before they go about their destructive duty. Pycnogenol protects blood vessels, strengthens their walls and capillaries, and thereby, aids circulation and prevents blood clots. Increased production of endothelial nitric oxide triggered by Pycnogenol also helps in dilating blood vessels and improving blood flow.

Pycnogenol Strengthens Connective Tissues: Yet another important function of Pycnogenol, is its ability to bind collagen and elastin. Collagen is a natural protein known to be fibrous in nature and whose function is to bind body organs and tissues such as skin, muscles, bones, tendons and cartilage. Collagen forms 25% of all proteins present in the body and its job is to hold the body together. Collagen is also found in teeth.

Elastin, on the other hand, is a protein found primarily in skin, providing skin with elasticity and suppleness. It is the presence of elastin that gives skin its texture and its ability to get back to shape even if it is pulled hard. Pycnogenol adds to the functionality of the two proteins.

Pycnogenol Treats Inflammation: Pycnogenol is known to be effective in treating inflammation and pain and is also found to improve mobility in patients with arthritis. Recent studies have found that joint pain and inflammation came down significantly in patients who were on Pycnogenol and patients were found to be able to walk three times the distance than what they could before being put on the natural healer.

Products based on Pycnogenol are available in drug stores and health food outlets around the world.

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