In a study conducted by Chieti-Pescara University in Italy, researchers have found that supplementation with a natural plant extract from French maritime pine tree bark significantly improves symptoms of psoriasis.
During the study, published in Panminerva Medica, researchers treated 73 patients between 30-45 for 12 weeks with standard management (SM), with 38 of them also receiving 150mg of Pycnogenol daily.
The Pycnogenol was shown to decrease the area of skin affected by psoriasis by 20% (compared to 8% with SM); reduce redness (45%; 16%), skin hardening (45%; 21%) and flaking (45%; 16%).
Other significant benefits included an increase of water and oil/lipids in all areas of the skin, a reduction in the need for SM drugs and a reduction in oxidative stress. Treatment time and cost was also decreased in those receiving Pycnogenol, and it was shown to improve the efficacy of SM practices without interference.
Nutritional medicine expert Dr Fred Pescatore commented: “Those suffering from psoriasis struggle with both the physical pain and emotional embarrassment of visibly affected areas. Unfortunately, treatments are often expensive and can cause significant side effects. This study shows that Pycnogenol can help reduce the skin inflammation, improve the efficacy of commonly-used remedies and lessen the need for other costly treatments.”
At the end of the trial, 80% of participants elected to continue using the extract. “The voluntary continued usage among psoriasis patients was a good indicator of the emotional reward of looking and feeling better from using Pycnogenol,” said Dr Pescatore.