The health benefits of bioflavonoids are extensive, which explains why they have been a part of herbal medicine for more than 5000 years. Found in fruits and vegetables, these antioxidants have many therapeutic and protective uses, but that isn’t all. Bioflavonoids are also antiviral, anti-inflammatory, and have antitumor properties.
What Are Bioflavonoids?
Bioflavonoids are a class of powerful phytochemicals, compounds that come from plants. You can find more than 4000 bioflavonoids in the plant kingdom, and almost every one is useful. They are broken down into categories: anthocyanidins, isoflavones, flavans, flavonols, flavones, and flavanones.
What Foods Contain Bioflavonoids?
Fruit and vegetables contain essential nutrients including bioflavonoids. Green vegetables like kale, spinach, and watercress are some of the best because they have extremely high bioflavonoid content. Generally, the more colorful the produce is, the richer it is in bioflavonoids. Citrus fruits, for instance, are a great source. Other hard-hitting foods and beverages are herbs, chocolate, and even red wine.
Bioflavonoids for Varicose Veins
Varicose veins affect approximately 60% of the population. While they are not particularly dangerous, they are quite visible and can affect self-confidence. These purple or dark veins occur when veins stretch and valves that prevent the blood from flowing backward cease to function. Rutin, a flavonoid found in citrus fruit, buckwheat, and asparagus, strengthens the veins, helping them to work efficiently. It can also ease the aches, pains, and swelling that sometimes accompany varicose veins. Oligomeric proanthocyanidin complex, another plant compound, also helps to decrease swelling and blood-pooling in the legs.
Treat Gingivitis with Bioflavonoids
Neglecting to take care of our dental hygiene is a one-way ticket to gingivitis, which occurs when plaque builds up in the gums. Plaque is a bacterium made up of mucus and food particles that get stuck between our teeth when we eat. People most at risk of contracting gum disease are those who are vitamin C-deficient, though research suggests vitamin C on its own is ineffective. A combination of vitamin C and flavonoids can help to improve your gum health.
Hemorrhoids and Bioflavonoids
As many as 75% of the population will suffer from hemorrhoids at some point in their lives. Hemorrhoids are uncomfortable and often very painful. Luckily, there are several natural methods that can prevent and treat this stigmatized development and the associated pain, such as consuming fruit and vegetables high in bioflavonoids. Hemorrhoids are veins that rupture due to capillary inflammation. Because bioflavonoids promote better capillary flow and blood circulation, they can help counteract the inflammation.
Bioflavonoids can Lower Blood Pressure
Studies have shown bioflavonoids can help regulate blood pressure, reducing high blood pressure. In fact, consuming more flavonoid-rich foods may decrease one’s likelihood of having a heart attack or a stroke.
Improve Liver Health with Bioflavonoids
The liver is an organ that can regenerate, but that doesn’t mean we don’t need to maintain healthy function. Without a fully-functioning liver, you can’t live. Bioflavonoids protect your liver, helping treat or prevent liver diseases such as hepatitis C. Catechins, a flavonoid in green tea, is particularly effective. As well as aiding people with both chronic and viral forms of hepatitis, this flavonoid can also reduce weight gain.
Almost everybody will experience allergies at some point. From asthma to hay fever and eczema, our bodies are prone to react to their surroundings, and sometimes they overreact. The common flavonoid quercetin, found in citrus fruit and onions, can reduce allergic reactions. Quercetin has antihistamine and anti-inflammatory properties and is particularly helpful for seasonal allergies. The flavonoid works by regulating the body’s histamine release, which results in fewer allergy symptoms. Some foods that can help curb your allergies include pineapple, berries, kiwi, and kefir.
Bioflavonoids can Prevent Cold Sores
Cold sores are a result of herpes simplex, a viral infection more commonly known as oral herpes. These contagious sores form around the edges of the lips and, more rarely, inside the nose. The virus can also spread to other areas of your body, including the genitals and eyes. You don’t always catch cold sores from other people. Stress or other common infections that lower your immune system can lead to them. Combining bioflavonoids and vitamin C can help your cold sores to heal faster.
Most people get bruises fairly regularly. Usually caused by minor trauma to the skin, bruising occurs when the blood vessels beneath the skin break. When this happens, they leak blood, which results in discoloration of the skin, as well as swelling. Because flavonoids strengthen your capillaries, a combination of bioflavonoids and vitamin C can help heal bruises.