A Comprehensive Guide to Pterostilbene Benefits

If you’re an alternative medicine enthusiast with a keen eye for emerging trends and new product releases, you must have noted a significant rise in the demand for pterostilbene.

Pterostilbene is a naturally occurring plant compound also available in dietary supplements, which is widely touted for its immense therapeutic properties. The substance primarily acts as an antioxidant, countering the potential harmful effects of free radicals in the body. Research indicates it might help with a broad spectrum of other medical issues.

If you’re wondering whether pterostilbene truly lives up to its medicinal claims, you’ve landed in the right place. Here’s everything to know about this novelty plant-derived therapeutic compound.

What Is Pterostilbene?

Pterostilbene, more technically known as trans-3,5-dimethoxy-4-hydroxystilbene, is a natural compound in plants that is best known for its antioxidant properties. The substance plays a significant phytoalexin role in the plants that secrete it, helping to ward off fungal and bacterial diseases.

Pterostilbene belongs to a group of phenylpropanoids called stilbenoids. They’re chemically related to the more popular resveratrol.

Like many other stilbenoids, pterostilbene isn’t just beneficial for plants. The compound might also exert its therapeutic effects on humans.

Pterostilbene benefits are largely due to its antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, antifungal, and antibacterial properties. The subsequent sections shall delve deeper into the stilbenoid’s pharmacological applications.

How Does Pterostilbene Differ From Resveratrol?

Both pterostilbene and resveratrol belong in the stilbenoid class of phenylpropanoids. However, the compounds differ considerably in their bioavailability.

Bioavailability is the percentage of a therapeutic compound that gets to the bloodstream relative to the total dosage consumed. It’s also known simply as absorption rate.

Pterostilbene has a bioavailability of up to 80% compared to 20% for resveratrol.

Dose for dose, pterostilbene is far more effective than resveratrol. Its higher absorption rate is due to two active methoxy groups in its molecular structure.

Where Can You Find Pterostilbene?

All stilbenoids are generally secreted by the same species.

Botanical researchers have uncovered substantial traces of pterostilbene in over 70 plant species. Common producers are grapes, nuts (such as almonds), and berries (such as blueberries and raspberries).

Other noteworthy pterostilbene-secreting plants include vines and heartwood.


What Are The Health Benefits Of Pterostilbene?

1. Fighting Free Radicals

Free radicals are by-products of various metabolic processes. These compounds are generally harmless in low concentrations. However, if allowed to accumulate beyond certain thresholds, free radicals could cause oxidative stress to cells, proteins, and DNA.

Sustained oxidative stress is a major risk factor for chronic diseases.

Studies have shown that stilbenoids like pterostilbene can mitigate oxidative stress through free radical scavenging. The compounds neutralize free radicals in the body, preventing them from accumulating beyond manageable levels.

2. Alleviating Inflammation

Stilbenoids have become one of the go-to supplements for managing inflammation, and pterostilbene is right at the center of that interest.

Pterostilbene can alleviate different inflammatory conditions. A rat-based study found that the compound could inhibit inflammatory reactions triggered by ischemia.

The best way to leverage pterostilbene’s anti-inflammatory properties is to use it as a standalone drug or in conjunction with complementary drugs. You can consult your healthcare provider for more insights into the anti-inflammatory medications known to work synergistically with stilbenoids.

3. Preventing Premature Aging

Pterostilbene acts as a natural modulator for nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD) oxidases.

NAD is a coenzyme involved in several bodily functions, particularly energy metabolism. Reversing premature aging is one of its many health benefits.

Nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide fights premature aging by addressing its core symptoms, such as wrinkles and skin tags. Pterostilbene’s modulatory effects on NAD oxidases explain its role in slowing down the natural aging process.

Comparison. Portrait of beautiful woman with problem and clean skin, aging and youth concept, beauty treatment

4. Supporting Heart Health

There’s mounting evidence that increasing pterostilbene consumption may aid heart and cardiovascular health.

One study found that pterostilbene could inhibit aortic smooth muscle cell proliferation in rats by blocking Akt-dependent pathways. This might consequently reduce blood vessel cancers, thereby improving overall cardiovascular functions.

Similar findings suggest pterostilbene intake might support heart health by lowering pulmonary arterial hypertension.

5. Managing Diabetes

People living with diabetes may also benefit from supplementing with pterostilbene. The compound is effective against both type 1 and type 2 diabetes.

According to research, pterostilbene’s antidiabetic effects come from its ability to ramp up glycogen levels as well as hepatic glucokinase and phosphofructokinase activities. It also inhibits the body’s signaling of serum and pancreatic pro-inflammatory cytokines.

Pterostilbene may further stimulate the production of glucokinase and glucose-6-phosphatase while suppressing fructose-1 and 6-bisphosphatase activities, making it particularly effective against type 2 diabetes.

Can Pterostilbene Cause Side Effects?

One preliminary study investigating pterostilbene’s propensity for side effects involved administering the compound to human subjects for 6 – 8 weeks. Researchers found this stilbenoid was safe for human use at doses as high as 250 milligrams (mg) daily.

However, this study did not examine pterostilbene’s potential metabolic effects on the subjects’ lipid profile. Even more worth noting is that different users can demonstrate different sensitivity and tolerance to the compound.

For instance, a new pterostilbene user may react more dramatically to the stilbenoid than accustomed users. That’s especially true if the substance is available as a dietary supplement, where side effects like gastrointestinal irritation could be due to other active compounds in the product.

Man suffering from nausea on bed at home. Food poisoning

Wrap Up

Pterostilbene is one of the most therapeutically effective stilbenoids. Regular compound intake might treat and even prevent certain diseases without causing severe side effects, provided that it’s moderately dosed.