Besides its uses in cooking, grape seed oil also is used in cosmetics. It may have medicinal benefits as well, from lightening age spots to reducing complications from diabetes.
Grape seed oil is made from pressed grape seeds and is a common by-product of winemaking. It is abundant and usually more economical than cooking oils such as olive oil. Grape seed oil offers light, clean flavor and a high smoke point, making it safer to use in stir-frying and baking. Like olive oil, it is polyunsaturated and a rich source of polyphenols.
When used in cosmetics, grape seed oil helps control moisture in the skin, leaving a light, glossy cover. High in linoleic acid, grape seed oil acts as an anti-inflammatory and an anti-allergen. Research also suggests that it can enhance the production of collagen to reduce acne, wrinkles and stretch marks, and the appearance of age spots and sun damage.
Taking grape seed oil orally may suppress development of some cancers and may also induce apoptosis, where damaged and superfluous cells self-destruct. It may also help reduce liver damage and other side effects of chemotherapy. Further, because grape seed contains oligomeric proanthocyanidin and flavonoids, it can help repair damaged blood vessels and capillary valves and improve poor circulation.