OPC initial aggravation: what to watch out for

OPC Erstverschlimmerung: Was zu beachten ist

If you take OPC in a targeted manner, symptoms can suddenly appear that make you feel unwell. That often unsettles you. An initial aggravation of OPC can occur, but it can just as easily not occur.

In this article you will learn how an initial aggravation occurs, how to dose OPC correctly and what effects and side effects there are. So your doubts about OPC and a possible initial deterioration can be cleared up.

the essentials in brief

  • Discomfort can appear in various symptoms when taking OPC. This is a so-called OPC initial aggravation.
  • Some people may experience side effects, including initial aggravation. But that doesn't happen with everyone.
  • OPC can be consumed in different forms. You should pay attention to the dosage, especially when it comes to supplements.

OPC initial aggravation: What you should know

Our body has a lot to do. The cardiovascular system and the immune system are particularly demanding. It is not always easy for our body to ensure the right blood pressure or to display a strong defense.

Our cells are attacked daily by external influences and generating them or protecting them from damage requires a healthy lifestyle. But often this is not enough and we have to help our body.

What is an OPC initial aggravation?

Oligomeric proanthocyanidins, also called OPC, are natural substances that occur in plants. They belong to the group of flavonoids. OPC is also part of the grape seed extract, which is obtained from grapes.

OPC are natural substances found in plants. In the case of an initial aggravation, slight discomfort may occur.

With an OPC initial aggravation is meant the discomfort when taking OPC for the first time. However, this should only be the case initially and may not happen at all(1).

Can OPC have side effects?

Headaches, nausea or discomfort may or may not occur when taking OPC(2).

It is also known that pregnant women or people with blood pressure problems should discuss taking it with their family doctor beforehand(3). If you are unsure whether you could experience side effects, you should also talk to your family doctor.

The initial deterioration as a side effect?

Even with the initial deterioration, the side effects are the same as they can also occur in the course of taking the drug, if they then occur.

So far, no interactions between OPC and other drugs or dietary supplements have been discovered(4).

How long does one have to take OPC for it to work?

OPC can be taken as a capsule or as a powder, as a so-called grape extract . This powder or capsules are best taken just before or after a meal, with the promise of better effects when taken on an empty stomach.

OPC in tablet form

OPC can be taken in both powder and pill form. (Image Source: Christina Victoria Craft / Unsplash)

Since no interactions with other medications are known to date, the OPC should not be used directly after or before taking other medications. Here, too, the advice of the family doctor is helpful in case of doubt(5).

Can OPC be overdosed?

OPC can definitely be overdosed. Other factors such as body weight, diet, use of other medications, and medical condition can affect dosage(6).

The following dosage should be observed or the following factors can be used to orient yourself so that there is no overdose:

revenue factor Amount in mg per day
Adult 150-500mg
By body weight 1-2mg per kilogram of body weight
Therapeutic Doses 250-700mg

When and for whom is the income from OPC useful?

OPC lowers blood pressure and helps the body to protect itself from diseases. So if you have a weak immune system or high blood pressure, OPC can help you to solve these problems.

However, it is different if you take blood-thinning medication. OPC is also a blood thinner and should not be taken in this combination (7).

According to one study, researchers have also found that taking OPC as a grape extract is helpful in fighting diabetes(8).

Where else can the ingredient OPC be found?

But OPC is not only available as a grape extract, but is also found in many other foods. In which ones do you see here(9):

Groceries milligrams per 100 g
grape seed flour 2,000 to 6,000
strawberries 42
blueberries 44
apples 41
red wine 46

What should you pay attention to when buying?

If you decide to buy OPC in the form of grape extract as tablets or powder, you should find out beforehand what is in the products. Consultation with your family doctor is also recommended. It is important to consume grape extract that is as pure as possible(10).

What alternatives are there to OPC?

Not only can OPC be taken as grape extract, pills, or powder, but there are a number of other alternatives as well (11).

  • Foods with OPC, such as apples, blueberries or blueberries.
  • preparations
  • Grape seed flour as it has a high OPC content.
  • antioxidants
  • Blood pressure lowering measures

I will explain a few points in more detail here:


In addition to grape extract, there is also pine bark extract and pine bark extract, which are also rich in OPC.


OPC is an antioxidant itself, but there are others. Vitamin C, vitamin E, vitamin B2 and zinc also have an antioxidant effect.

man jogging

Exercising a lot can help you live a healthy life and lower your blood pressure. (Image Source: Chander R / Unsplash)

Blood pressure lowering measures

OPC is good at lowering blood pressure, but there are so many other things you can do to keep blood pressure from rising. A lot of sleep, regular sport or a lot of exercise, as well as a healthy diet and little alcohol help to keep blood pressure down.


The bottom line is that an initial aggravation can occur when taking OPC, also as a side effect, but is by no means harmful. It also depends on the person and factors, whether, for example, you feel unwell when taking it or whether everything goes smoothly.

Even the supposed side effects, which do not always occur and are also dependent on the person and health, do not mitigate the result that you get from taking OPC. If you still don't want to notice any side effects, you have enough alternatives to avoid taking OPC through supplements.


  1. Gesundfit.de, OPC: 5 effects, 5 side effects + 6 alternative sources
  2. natur-kompendium.de, OPC grape seed extract - effect, application, studies, Herbert Havera Source
  3. womenshealth.de, Everyone raves about OPC: But what effect does it have?, Tove Marla Hortmann Source
  4. Vitaminexpress.de, OPC - the healthy grape seed extract Source
  5. krankenkassenzentrale.de, OPC grape seed extract – worth knowing about the application Source
  6. naturalie.de, The right OPC dosage Source
  7. utopia.de, OPC grape seed extract: Effects and side effects, Leonie Barghorn, December 8th, 2018 Source
  8. Baskaran Yogalakshmi, Saravanan Bhuvaneswari, S. Sreeja and Carani Venkatraman Anuradha, Grape seed proanthocyanidins and metformin act by different mechanisms to promote insulin signaling in rats fed high calorie diet, J Cell Commun Signal. 2014 Mar; 8(1): 13-22. Published online 2013 Sep 12. doi: 10.1007/s12079-013-0210-x Source
  9. vitamindoctor.de, OPC – protection for blood vessels, cells and the heart Source
  10. krankenkassenzentrale.de, OPC grape seed extract – worth knowing about the application Source
  11. Gesundfit.de, OPC: 5 effects, 5 side effects + 6 alternatives Source
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