Quercetin and rutin are bioflavonoids found in eucalyptus, the onion plant, and other sources. It is derived commercially from blue-green algae. Bioflavonoids (formerly termed vitamin P) are water soluble and composed of substances which often appear in fruit and vegetables as companions to vitamin C. Major bioflavonoids include citrin, hesperidin, rutin, flavones, and flavonals; although there are over a thousand altogether.
Method of Action
Bioflavonoids are essential for proper absorption and use of vitamin C. They assist vitamin C in keeping collagen in healthy condition, and are vital in their ability to increase the strength of the capillaries and to regulate permeability. These actions help prevent ruptures in the capillaries and connective tissues, and build a protective barrier against infection.
In countering allergic reactions, quercetin is reputed to inhibit, or block, histamine release.
Quercetin increases bile secretion, the detoxifying function of the liver, and has anti-inflammatory properties in animals. It is also effective against influenza viral infections on chick embryos and mouse tissue.
Bioflavonoids are beneficial in the treatment of:
cirrhosis of the liver,
respiratory infections and allergies like asthma, and
Quercetin, specifically, is used therapeutically to decrease capillary fragility.
The controversial Ames Test has caused quercitin to be labeled “mutagenic” but the validity is disputed, together with similar results for vitamin C itself and rutin.Abstracts
Therapeutic recommendations tend to range between 125 and 500 mg. It will usually be taken before meals (i.e. three times a day) together with vitamin C and digestive enzymes (e.g. bromelain).
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