Polyphenols Benefits for Your Heart, Brain, Skin, and More

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Polyphenols are natural compounds found in plants, offering a plethora of health benefits. Known for their antioxidant properties, they are also studied for their potential in areas like anti-aging, anti-inflammatory effects, and cardiovascular health.

In this article, we’ll explore the various benefits of polyphenols, diving into the research that sheds light on how these compounds can be a valuable part of your health regimen.

What Are Polyphenols?

Polyphenols are a broad category of natural compounds found primarily in plant-based foods. These compounds give fruits and vegetables their vibrant colors and are often responsible for their unique flavors and aromas. You’ll find them in foods like berries, tea, coffee, and even chocolate. Available in supplement form, polyphenols offer a convenient way to get these health-promoting compounds without having to consume large quantities of fruits and vegetables. Known primarily for their antioxidant properties, polyphenols also hold promise in areas like anti-inflammatory effects, heart health, and more.

Recent research provides growing evidence that eating foods with polyphenols may help reduce the risk of chronic diseases. But, there is ongoing debate about the optimal amount of polyphenols needed to have a protective effect.

The dietary sources of polyphenols include tea, coffee, red wine, fruits, and vegetables as the main contributors. Certain subclasses of polyphenols, such as flavonoids, appeared to be associated with a lower risk of diabetes, cardiovascular events, and all-cause mortality. [PMC6627994]

Epidemiological studies suggest that long-term consumption of plant polyphenols protects against cardiovascular disease, cancer, osteoporosis, diabetes, and neurodegenerative diseases. 

Recent Advances in Natural Polyphenol Research [PMC9787743]

What Are the Benefits of Polyphenols?

  • Antioxidant Effects: Polyphenols in supplements can help protect cells from the damage caused by free radicals. This process may play a role in reducing the risk of chronic diseases. [PMC8064059]
  • Anti-Inflammatory Potential: Chronic inflammation is linked to several health conditions, including arthritis. Polyphenols may help reduce this inflammation, potentially easing symptoms and lowering disease risk. [PMC8955436]
  • Heart Health: Maintaining a healthy heart is essential, and polyphenols may contribute to this by supporting lower blood pressure and healthier cholesterol levels. [PMC3820045]
  • Brain Function: There’s interest in polyphenols for their potential to support brain health. They may help keep the brain functioning well and could offer some protection against age-related brain diseases. [PMC3372091]
    • Memory Decline: Polyphenols have shown a beneficial effect on age-related cognitive decline. This study evaluated the effect of a polyphenol-rich extract from grape and blueberry. A randomized, controlled trial of 60-70 year olds received 600 mg/day of PEGB (containing 258 mg flavonoids) or a placebo for 6 months. The study showed that PEGB improved age-related episodic memory decline in test subjects with the most cognitive impairments. [PMID: 30032176]
  • Mood: A controlled study found that depression scores improved in subjects who received a high phenol diet.[PMC7469043]
  • Skin Protection: Polyphenols might help in protecting the skin against damage from the sun and aging by helping to maintain skin structure and resilience. [PMC7231294, PMC8953599]
  • Blood Sugar Control: For managing blood sugar levels, polyphenols may be beneficial, particularly for those with diabetes or at risk of developing it. [PMC6014790, PMC7602234]
  • Cancer Research: Early studies indicate that polyphenols could play a role in cancer prevention by interfering with the growth and spread of cancer cells. [PMC6207154, PMC9658101] Polyphenols have been studied in the setting of cancer treatment. [PMC8619660]
  • May Affect Aging and Longevity: There is great interest in using natural compounds to improve health, prevent chronic diseases, and extend longevity. [PMC7918214]
  • Sleep: Epidemiology studies have shown that higher polyphenol consumption was associated with higher sleep quality. [PMC9972497]

Food Sources of Polyphenols

Food SourceAmount of Polyphenols Per Serving
Cloves (1 teaspoon)15,188 mg
Peppermint (1 cup)11,960 mg
Dark Chocolate (1 oz)1,664 mg
Blackberries (1 cup)1,264 mg
Green Tea (1 cup)736 mg
Red Wine (5 oz)101 mg
Almonds (1 oz)187 mg
Black Coffee (1 cup)214 mg
Note: The amounts listed are approximate and can differ based on specific types and growing conditions of the food.

Is Polyphenol Supplements Safe?

Polyphenols are generally considered safe, especially when consumed through natural food sources like fruits, vegetables, and teas. These compounds have been a part of the human diet for centuries and are well-tolerated by most people. When taking polyphenol supplements, side effects are rare and usually mild, often involving digestive issues like gas or bloating. Scientific studies also support the safety of polyphenols, showing that they are not only safe but beneficial in various doses. Overall, polyphenols are a safe and natural way to enhance your health.

Medication Interactions with Polyphenols

  • Blood Thinners (e.g., Warfarin): Polyphenols may enhance the blood-thinning effects, increasing the risk of bleeding.
  • Blood Pressure Medications: Polyphenols can lower blood pressure and might interact with medications designed to do the same.
  • Antidiabetic Drugs: Polyphenols can affect blood sugar levels, potentially interacting with antidiabetic medications like metformin.
  • Chemotherapy Drugs: Certain polyphenols could interfere with the effectiveness of chemotherapy treatments.
  • Antibiotics: Polyphenols may interfere with the absorption or effectiveness of some antibiotics.

Supplement Interactions with Polyphenols

  • Vitamin K: Both Vitamin K and polyphenols can affect blood clotting, so combining them might increase the risk of bleeding.
  • Iron: Polyphenols can bind to iron, possibly reducing its absorption in the body.
  • Calcium: Polyphenols may affect calcium absorption, which could be a concern for people taking calcium supplements.
  • Omega-3 Fatty Acids: Both have anti-inflammatory properties, and taking them together may amplify these effects.
  • Coenzyme Q10: Both CoQ10 and polyphenols have antioxidant properties, and taking them together could intensify these effects.

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Polyphenols by Codeage

Codeage Polyphenols Broad Spectrum offers a high-quality blend of 16 different berries, fruits, and botanical extracts to offer a vegan all-in-one polyphenols solution. This polyphenol formula features organic and decaf green tea leaf extract. Green tea is a well-known source of polyphenols and can conveniently be consumed in a green tea pill format.These polyphenols and quercetin pills feature 16 different polyphenols to help provide a source of resveratrol. The solution can also offer a source of flavonoids and phenolic compounds.

The ingredients used in this proprietary blend is known to:

  • Support joint health*
  • Support brain function*
  • Support digestion*

Suggested Use:
Take 4 capsules daily with 8 ounces of water or your favorite beverage. May be taken with or without food.

Amount Per 4 Capsule Serving
Proprietary Blend 
… 2370 mg
Pomegranate Fruit Extract, Quercetin Dihydrate, Turmeric Root Extract, Organic Decaf Green Tea Leaf Extract, Grape Extract (Skin & Seed), Organic Blueberry Powder, Apple Extract 4:1, Aronia Berry Extract, Olive Fruit Extract, Acai Fruit Extract 4:1 (Euterpe oleracea), Noni Fruit Extract , Alfalfa Whole Plant Extract, Hawthorn Berry Powder, Celery Seed Extract.

Bilberry + Grapeskin Polyphenols 280mg by Jarrow Formulas

Supports Vision*

Jarrow Formulas® Bilberry + Grapeskin Polyphenols is a synergistic blend of standardized flavonoid antioxidants.* The Swedish bilberry extract contains 25% polyphenols as anthocyanosides. The red grapeskin extract contains 30% polyphenols, including anthocyanins. These flavonoids support vision by enhancing antioxidant status in the eye and reducing capillary permeability and fragility.*

Take 1 capsule 1 to 2 times per day or as directed by your qualified healthcare professional.

Amount Per 1 Capsule Serving
Swedish Bilberry Extract … 80mg
(Vaccinium myrtillus)(25% anthocyanosides)(fruit)
Grapeskin Extract … 200mg
(Vitis vinifera L.)(30% polyphenols)(pomace)

Food First!

Although this article discusses supplements in detail, don’t forget that we are absolutely committed to the “Food First” approach to nutrition. When it comes to your health, the totality of your eating habits far surpasses the impact of individual nutrients or any single supplement you consume. Even though this article doesn’t delve into the broader picture of your overall diet, it’s crucial to keep this element at the forefront of our minds. Your food needs to provide all the vitamins, minerals, fiber, and phytochemicals to nourish your body systems down to the cellular level.

Food choices, rather than supplements, are the most critical factors for a healthy gut microbiome. These trillions of tiny inhabitants in your gut affect your brain waves; they orchestrate your immune system. They possess the power to create molecules that can switch genes on or off and are even capable of synthesizing neurotransmitters. Opting for organic foods and steering clear of plastic packaging (including those labeled BPA-free) is a smart move to limit toxin exposure. The sum of all these parts leads to a powerful conclusion: the ultimate key to your health lies in the quality and balance of the food you consume. Supplements are secondary.

To Sum It Up

Polyphenols offer a range of health benefits that make them a valuable part of a balanced diet. From their potent antioxidant properties to their potential in improving heart health, reducing inflammation, and even slowing down aging, these compounds are versatile and effective. Supplements provide a convenient way to get a concentrated dose, especially for those who find it challenging to consume enough polyphenol-rich foods. Research continues to unveil the various ways polyphenols can improve health, adding to the growing list of reasons to include them in your diet.

This Article is Not a Substitute for Medical Advice

Dietary supplements are not designed to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. The Supplement Sciences website seeks to provide comprehensive access to the most relevant supplement information along with convenient online ordering. We do not provide medical advice and cannot guarantee that every product suggested is completely without risk. Since each person is unique in their health history and medication use, it is important to discuss supplements with your personal physician. Specifically, pregnant women and individuals being treated for cancer or liver or kidney problems must consult their physician about every nutritional supplement they plan to take. People taking medications for the treatment of HIV or with a history of organ transplant must not take supplements without consulting with their physician.

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