The term polyphenols refers to a heterogeneous group of phytochemicals. These include, for example, flavonoids (such as resveratrol), lignans, gallotannins and hydroxycinnamic acids (e.g., caffeic acid). Polyphenols are characterized by a special spectrum of activity.
- capture aggressive oxygen compounds (free radicals), thus relieve oxidative stress (antioxidant),
- fight cancer (anticarcinogenic),
- stimulate the immune system (immunostimulating),
- inhibit inflammation (anti-inflammatory),
- combat microorganisms (antimicrobial),
- act anticoagulant (antithrombotic),
- lower the blood sugar and
- reduce blood pressure.
Polyphenols in cosmetics
For skin cosmetics, polyphenols are of interest because of their antioxidant, anticancer, anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial and immunostimulating effects. They are designed, for example, to help against skin aging and wrinkles, to repair photodamage and to relieve symptoms of irritated, inflamed or neurodermitic skin.
In the manufacture of care products mostly non-isolated polyphenols are used as pure substances, but polyphenol-containing plant extracts. The starting material used are, for example, green tea, coffee, grapes, argan oil, olive, peanut or walnut oil.