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Polyphenol Magic: The Top 10 Super Powers of Polyphenols

Basket of organic farmer's market vegetables and fruits with all the colors of the rainbow high in polyphenols to support gut and skin health.

Have you ever wondered what makes plants look so colorful and how they are able to sustain such beauty? We'll let you in on the secret...there is an inherent wisdom and a reason for their longevity, whether you call it plant magic, super powers or wild intelligence —that reason is called Polyphenols.  These Polyphenols are what allows plants to survive, thrive and to look so vibrant.  When people consume Polyphenols, we too get to benefit from their gifts of health and longevity. 

Polyphenol rich foods include fruits and vegetables, such as  berries, grapes, green tea, coffee, baobab fruit powder, and citrus fruits.  These bioactive phytochemicals include bioflavonoids, stilbenes, phenolic acids and lignans. It is estimated that there are more than 8,000 types of polyphenols. Every plant has a unique polyphenol signature, shaped by their environment as defense against ultraviolet radiation and pathogens. [1]

Baobab trees are the ultimate example, growing in the African Savanna one of the most inhospitable places on earth  these majestic trees managed to thrive for thousands of years wisely and abundantly concentrating polyphenols in its fruit, leaves and oil . These magical qualities make Baobab a superior source for longevity, wellness and skincare. Baobab seed oil is revered as it provides superior protection of supporting skin moisture retention and restoring luster to damaged hair

Polyphenols have diverse effects in our body

We can benefit from polyphenols through our diet and topically with skincare. Polyphenols influence diverse aspects of our health all at once. Studies on Ellagic Acid , a polyphenol derived from pomegranates, nicely illustrate how a single polyphenol can have this pleiotropic effect. Ellagic acid, a key ingredient in KAIBAE gut/skin resilience, preserves muscle mass, improves blood vessel flexibility and prevents skin pigmentation.

1. Polyphenols benefit immune health

Advances in polyphenol research reveals why  traditionally  used  botanicals  benefit immune health.  Pelargonium sidoides, a plant that grows wild in the South African grasslands, is an effective treatment for a number of upper respiratory tract infections. Its effectiveness results from its powerful flavonoids content (quercetin, catechin and gallocatechin) providing anti-inflammatory properties with antibacterial activity and antiviral activity. KAIBAE gut/lung resilience includes Pelargonium, Elderberry, Prebiotic Beta-Glucan, Probiotic Lactospore and polyphenol rich Baobab to maximum gut to lung support.

2. Polyphenols play a key role in gut health

A polyphenol rich diet  modulates gut microbiota which in turn help produce metabolites that  benefit the whole body in numerous ways.  The synergy of Prebiotic fiber, Probiotics and Polyphenols  slows the development of chronic diseases including cancer, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, osteoporosis,  and neuro-degenerative diseases. These 3 P’s— Prebiotics, Probiotics and Polyphenols are at the core of health and skincare regimen. 

Pelargonium is a plant that grows wild in South Africa. Its flower and potent powder is beautiful bright deep pink from the high polyphenols. Pelargonium has a multitude of benefits including anti viral and antibacterial properties. Pelargonium is researched to support lung health and support recovery from respiratory infections.

3. Polyphenols reduce damaging effects of sugar on the skin

High glycemic index foods include pasta, white rice, white bread and crackers all  cause a rapid rise in blood sugar. These foods contribute to the development of acne, skin tags and accelerate skin aging, through a process called glycation.  The excess of glucose weakens collagen and elastin proteins. Collagen is an important protein for healthy, youthful-looking skin as well as structural integrity throughout the body. Polyphenols in Baobab powder help postprandial glycemic response reducing the damaging effects of excess blood sugar and advanced glycation end products (AGEs) on the skin.[2,3] 

4. Polyphenols are photo protective and prevent skin pigmentation

Pomegranate, walnuts, berries and green tea are rich in epigallocatechin and ellagic acid with powerful anti-inflammatory and anti-cancer benefits. This group of polyphenols is further converted into post biotic components such as [4] Urolithin A, which has a renewal effect on mitochondria, the tiny powerhouses in every cell of our body, rejuvenating the skin and even improving muscle endurance [5,6]. When looking for a high polyphenol face oil KAIBAE developed a luxurious blend of wild plants to provide you with the daily protection from pollution and UV radiation to preserve youthful looking skin. 


KAIBAE gut/skin resilience supplement with 2 capsules spilling out of bottle on to the counter top. Gut/skin resilience is a polyphenol rich blend with Baobab and Pomegranate and other nutrients that benefit healthy glowing skin

5. Polyphenols are rejuvenating to the skin 

Quercetin, Rutin and Hesperidin are just a couple of the many Bioflavonoids found in citrus. Bioflavonoids support gut and skin barrier health. [7] and show great anti-aging potential, reducing age spots, improving skin elasticity and reducing the appearance of wrinkles. In fact, quercetin is referred to as one of  bioflavonoids  known to have great senolytic benefit, meaning that it has the ability to both eliminate aging cells and rejuvenate cells throughout the whole body.   Rutin decreases capillary permeability and improves microcirculation to all skin cells. Hesperidin reduces the activity of tyrosinase, an enzyme  which is responsible for skin pigment melanin production.[6,7]

6. Polyphenols prevent DNA damage and support longevity

One of the many benefits of resveratrol, abundant in grapes, is improving lifespan, regulating oxidative stress and energy metabolism by activating sirtuins, proteins that are responsible for DNA repair and slowing down the aging process.[8]  Pterostilbene, a blueberry polyphenol, chemically similar to resveratrol, absorbs easier and when used in topical preparations helps with skin barrier repair and provides SPF protection. [9]

Woman doing yoga at the coast feeling relaxed and at ease.

7. Polyphenols calm the mind and the skin

Cacao’s mood-enhancing neurochemicals alleviate anxiety and depression. The calming benefit of cacao  reduces the  damaging effects of the stress hormone cortisol on  the skin. [9]  Research  into the Gut-brain-skin axis shows  imbalances in the gut microbiome impacts  our mood and the  skin contributing to conditions such as acne and psoriasis. [10]

8. Polyphenols reduce skin inflammation 

Turmeric is a known herb for inflammation, used for joint pain and reducing muscle soreness but actually has wide ranging beneficial effects throughout the body.  It soothes the mood and for the skin it adds glow and luster and  helps wounds heal faster. Topically Turmeric is used to reduce redness and irritation associated with eczema and psoriasis.[10] 

9. Polyphenols improve hormone balance and skin health

Polyphenols support hormone balance which also helps the skin. Well-known Polyphenol Lignans are a polyphenolic compound which are found in a wide variety of foods, including flax seeds, sesame seeds, legumes, fruits and vegetables. Lignans are converted in the gut to enterolignans, enterodiol and enterolactone which have an estrogen-like effect on our cells. These phytoestrogens help get skin glowing! Increasing the production of hyaluronic acid and protect collagen and elastin from oxidative stress.[11]  For women adding more Lignan rich foods to the diet may support the skin during menopause.[12]

10. Polyphenols improve microcirculation in your skin

Your favorite coffee gives you an energy boost in the morning and studies show that the polyphenol content in coffee does the same when applied to the skin. Coffee extract and coffee oil from green coffee beans improve microcirculation, encouraging healthy collagen production.

In conclusion

Make sure that polyphenols and their multitude of healing properties become a part of your daily diet and skincare routines. These are the top 10 reasons —and there are many more reasons to love polyphenols!  KAIBAE turns to the wild where plants amass an abundance of polyphenol phyto chemicals.  It is also in every organ system that Polyphenols prove to have rejuvenating wellness benefits.  Baobab is only one of the many wild plants that provides amazing nutrients.  There is seaweed, pelargoium, cacay, moringa, allanblackia, and more.  Polyphenols are the key nutrient that have wide ranging benefits from gut to skin, for health and beauty. Whether you choose to refer to it as “Mother Nature's magic”,  “super powers” or “wild intelligence™” plants, especially wild plants regenerative to their harsh environments and important to biodiversity, have mastered a way to concentrate their abundant Polyphenol goodness —and share their benefits with us! 

[1] Plamada D, Vodnar DC. Polyphenols-Gut Microbiota Interrelationship: A Transition to a New Generation of Prebiotics. Nutrients. 2021 Dec 28;14(1):137. doi: 10.3390/nu14010137. PMID: 35011012; PMCID: PMC8747136.

[2] Coe SA, Clegg M, Armengol M, Ryan L. The polyphenol-rich baobab fruit (Adansonia digitata L.) reduces starch digestion and glycemic response in humans. Nutr Res. 2013 Nov;33(11):888-96. doi: 10.1016/j.nutres.2013.08.002. Epub 2013 Sep 9. PMID: 24176228.

[3]Danby FW. Nutrition and aging skin: sugar and glycation. Clin Dermatol. 2010 Jul-Aug;28(4):409-11. doi: 10.1016/j.clindermatol.2010.03.018. PMID: 20620757

[4[Gorgisen G, Ozkol H, Tuluce Y, Arslan A, Ecer Y, Keskin S, Kaya Z, Ragbetli MC. Silibinin and ellagic acid increase the expression of insulin receptor substrate 1 protein in ultraviolet irradiated rat skin. Biotech Histochem. 2020 Nov;95(8):641-646. doi: 10.1080/10520295.2020.1753238. Epub 2020 Apr 29. PMID: 32347127.

[5] Ryu D, Mouchiroud L, Andreux PA, Katsyuba E, Moullan N, Nicolet-Dit-Félix AA, Williams EG, Jha P, Lo Sasso G, Huzard D, Aebischer P, Sandi C, Rinsch C, Auwerx J. Urolithin A induces mitophagy and prolongs lifespan in C. elegans and increases muscle function in rodents. Nat Med. 2016 Aug;22(8):879-88. doi: 10.1038/nm.4132. Epub 2016 Jul 11. PMID: 27400265.

[6]D'Amico D, Andreux PA, Valdés P, Singh A, Rinsch C, Auwerx J. Impact of the Natural Compound Urolithin A on Health, Disease, and Aging. Trends Mol Med. 2021 Jul;27(7):687-699. doi: 10.1016/j.molmed.2021.04.009. Epub 2021 May 21. PMID: 34030963

[7]Wang M, Zhao H, Wen X, Ho CT, Li S. Citrus flavonoids and the intestinal barrier: Interactions and effects. Compr Rev Food Sci Food Saf. 2021 Jan;20(1):225-251. doi: 10.1111/1541-4337.12652. Epub 2020 Nov 10. PMID: 33443802.

[8]Pyo IS, Yun S, Yoon YE, Choi JW, Lee SJ. Mechanisms of Aging and the Preventive Effects of Resveratrol on Age-Related Diseases. Molecules. 2020 Oct 12;25(20):4649. doi: 10.3390/molecules25204649. PMID: 33053864; PMCID: PMC7587336.

[9]McCormack D, McFadden D. A review of pterostilbene antioxidant activity and disease modification. Oxid Med Cell Longev. 2013;2013:575482. doi: 10.1155/2013/575482. Epub 2013 Apr 4. PMID: 23691264; PMCID: PMC3649683

[10]Vaughn AR, Branum A, Sivamani RK. Effects of Turmeric (Curcuma longa) on Skin Health: A Systematic Review of the Clinical Evidence. Phytother Res. 2016 Aug;30(8):1243-64. doi: 10.1002/ptr.5640. Epub 2016 May 23. PMID: 27213821.

[11]Desmawati D, Sulastri D. Phytoestrogens and Their Health Effect. Open Access Maced J Med Sci. 2019 Feb 14;7(3):495-499. doi: 10.3889/oamjms.2019.044. PMID: 30834024; PMCID: PMC6390141.

[12] Hairi HA, Shuid AN, Ibrahim N', Jamal JA, Mohamed N, Mohamed IN. The Effects and Action Mechanisms of Phytoestrogens on Vasomotor Symptoms During Menopausal Transition: Thermoregulatory Mechanism. Curr Drug Targets. 2019;20(2):192-200. doi: 10.2174/1389450118666170816123740. PMID: 28814228.

[13}Tseng YP, Liu C, Chan LP, Liang CH. Coffee pulp supplement affects antioxidant status and favors anti-aging of skin in healthy subjects. J Cosmet Dermatol. 2021 Jul 15. doi: 10.1111/jocd.14341. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 34265165.

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