President of Swanson Health Products®
Mr. Frank Murray, author of Health Benefits Derived from Sweet Orange
Dear Friends and Valued Customers:
Mr. Frank Murray is widely recognized as one of the world’s premier researchers and writers in the field of natural health and wellness. He is the author or co-author of 47 books and a former editor for Better Nutrition, Let’s Live, and Great Life magazines. His latest book, Health Benefits Derived from Sweet Orange, details the research behind diosmin and how this specific bioflavonoid is being used in Europe and, now, in the U.S., primarily for promoting the health and appearance of the legs.
~Lee Swanson, President of Swanson Health Products
MURRAY: Well, it’s been a long journey and I couldn’t be more blessed in my career. Serving as the editor for three of the industry’s leading consumer magazines gave me the opportunity to gain inside knowledge and unique insight into what works, what doesn’t, and what motivates both the innovators of natural products and the consumers who use them. From this perspective I’ve witnessed the profound evolution and validation of the natural products marketplace, and I hope that I’ve made my own positive contributions as well.
MURRAY: I began research for this book at the request of a colleague, and I just became fascinated by it. Diosmin is a naturally occurring bioflavonoid found in sweet oranges. It was initially discovered in 1929 but wasn’t employed as a supplemental nutrient until 1969. Since that time it’s become a highly regarded vascular supplement in Europe, with its primary application being to support the health and beauty of the legs. Many clinical studies suggest that Diosmin works by promoting venous tone, lymphatic drainage and microcirculation (or circulation to the tiniest blood vessels, the capillaries).
MURRAY: That’s absolutely true. Bioflavonoids, sometimes collectively called “Vitamin P,” are natural substances found usually in small amounts within fruits, vegetables, flowers and grains. Most people are familiar with them in relation to Vitamin C. Scientists have been studying bioflavonoids since the renowned scientist Albert Szent-Györgyi first isolated a mixture of them from citrus rind in the 1930s. His extract was called Citrin. Since then, we’ve identified over 800 individual bioflavonoids, including Rutin, Hesperidin and Naringen, which are the ones most people have heard about. Our topic today, Diosmin, is one of the most recently identified bioflavonoids. Each bioflavonoid is identified by slight molecular differences that distinguish it from its counterparts. Diosmin’s unique identity appears in the presence of a double bond between two carbon atoms in the central carbon ring, which differentiates it from its precursor, Hesperidin. Diosmin, in fact, is produced by extracting and isolating Hesperidin from the rind of the sweet orange and then converting it, through natural means, into Diosmin. It’s complicated, but hopefully this explanation provides a useful bit of understanding.
MURRAY: Well, you are right that his most famous work was with Vitamin C; in fact, it won him the Nobel Prize for Medicine in 1937. His work with bioflavonoids, though, has proven to be just as important. Dr. Szent-Györgyi’s initial studies with bioflavonoids were conducted on guinea pigs. The papers were published in 1936. In them, his team reported that when combining Vitamin C with bioflavonoids, a significant effect was seen in the body’s smallest blood vessels, the capillaries. Through subsequent investigations, the theory developed that bioflavonoids may contribute to the strength and integrity of these tiny vessels. It’s this work that eventually led to the development of Diosmin.
MURRAY: For a natural product, it’s amazing to have the amount of data that we have on Diosmin. The French medical establishment in particular has put a lot of work into it. The study you first read, I believe, was reported in the journal International Angiology and was conducted with 200 subjects at a French hospital. All of the participants had an observed need for microvascular support and ranged in age from 19 to 81. They were given 500 mg of Diosmin daily for one year. Within months, many of the participants were realizing noticeable benefits, and by the end of the yearlong study, 80 percent reported favorable results. An earlier, yet equally notable study was an international investigation involving 5,000 participants in 23 countries. It was published in the Journal of Angiology in 2002. Subjects took a supplement comparable to the DiosVein formula (which includes Diosmin and Hesperidin) for six months. Regardless of location and other variables, every single participant reported noticeable benefits. Researchers wrote that a continuous progression in quality of life scores was recorded across the entire study population.
MURRAY: The exact mechanism of action is not completely understood, but since Dr. Szent-Györgyi’s work, scientists have observed that bioflavonoids exert a strengthening influence on capillaries and other vascular tissue. The theory today is that they help maintain the integrity of the capillary walls, thereby supporting proper strength and permeability. Diosmin, when combined with Hesperidin as in DiosVein, appears to be particularly effective in this way.