Review of pycnogenol studies says most too flawed to prove efficacy

The New York Times “Well” blog reports on research into pycnogenol, which is an extract from “French pine bark” that can be made into a supplement that users claim “strengthens cardiovascular systems and eases symptoms of chronic disorders like asthma, osteoarthritis and chronic venous insufficiency.”

However, an overview of research on the substance published in the Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews “found that most of the studies on the supplement were too flawed to prove its efficacy.”

The blog adds, “According to the National Institutes of Health, the supplement is “possibly safe” when taken daily in doses of 50 milligrams or more for up to six months, but it can also cause side effects like dizziness, headache and mouth ulcers.”

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