Patients with colorectal cancer may benefit from the cancer-growth-inhibiting power of grape seed extract. Researchers from the University of Colorado Cancer Center report that the more aggressive the cancer cells are, the more effective the grape extract works at targeting and stopping the growth.
Grape seed extract is amazing in that it attacks the cancer cells but leaves the healthy cells untouched. This is a departure from conventional cancer treatments that destroy all of the cells in an attempt to stop the spread of cancer.
Actually, the power of grape seed extract seems quite remarkable in this research, which was published in the journal Cancer Letters. Molly Derry, a doctoral candidate in the lab of Rajesh Agarwal, PhD, and investigator at the CU Cancer Center and her team saw that while doses of chemotherapy only increase with more severe cancer cases, such as a stage IV instead of stage II, the amount of grape seed extract required actually decreased.
“It required less than half the concentration of GSE to suppress cell growth and kill 50 percent of stage IV cells than it did to achieve similar results in the stage II cells.”
“We’ve known for quite a while that the bioactive compounds in grape seed extract selectively target many types of cancer cells. This study shows that many of the same mutations that allow colorectal cancer cells to metastasize and survive traditional therapies make them especially sensitive to treatment with GSE.”
The Amazing Grapes
One of many berry types, grapes were introduced to America over 300 years ago. There are over 8,000 grape varieties with the main types being American and European. With only 100 calories per cup, grapes are a great source of vitamins K and C and are loaded with antioxidants.
Grape seed extract is made from the seed of the grape and is beneficial for a number of cardiovascular conditions such as poor circulation and high cholesterol. The extract has also been found useful in the treatment of diabetes-related eye disease, loss of vision due to aging, and swelling associated with injury. Currently, GSE is being studied in the treatment of leukemia and Alzheimer’s disease.
Interestingly, past research also points to berries as a solution for colorectal cancer and many other cancers. In one study, the growth of new tumors in mice fed black raspberry decreased by 45 percent and the total number of tumors went down 60 percent. Other research found that foods rich in flavanols (berries, grapes, apples) also reduces the risk of colon cancer.
Advanced Cancer and Grape Seed Extract
The bioactive compounds in grape seed extract selectively target many types of cancer cells. With an increase in colorectal cancer, the findings of this study are timely. By the time most people are diagnosed with the disease, it is in the advanced stages. But thankfully, as mentioned, researchers found that it required less grape seed extract to kill advanced cancer cells than it did cells in the early stage. It is thought that the extract kills cancer cells by a process of oxidative stress.
By Susan Patterson, Natural Society;