Pycnogenol is a highly promising dietary supplement that may offer several potential health benefits especially related to cardiovascular health such as lowering blood pressure, reducing inflammation, improving cardio-metabolic biomarkers, treating chronic venous insufficiency and much more.
What Is Pycnogenol?
Pycnogenol is a standardized extract from the bark of the French Maritime Pine and has a long historical use for treating inflammation and to improve general health.
Pycnogenol has been subjected to more than 100 research trials in recent years and research has found Pycnogenol to exert numerous potential therapeutic benefits including antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, vasodilator activities, collagen stabilizing and anti-thrombotic properties, plus the ability to enhance microcirculation by increasing capillary permeability.
Evidence-Based Health Benefits Of Pycnogenol
Pycnogenol & Inflammation
A number of studies have now found that French maritime pine bark extract (Pycnogenol®) has anti-inflammatory effect and can decrease the level of inflammatory biomarkers such as CRP(C-reactive protein).
A systematic review and meta-analyis of five trials published 2018 on the effect of Pycnogenol Supplementation on Plasma C-Reactive Protein Concentration concluded:
Present systematic review and meta-analysis suggested Pycnogenol consumption can decrease the level of CRP and have anti-inflammatory effect. 
Individuals can now easily test inflammatory biomarkers such as hs-CRP(high‐sensitivity C‐reactive protein) from home using Forth with Life’s finger prick blood test kits. – hs-CRP Home Blood Test Kit
Pycnogenol Lowers Blood Pressure
Studies have found Pycnogenol to exert anti-hypertensive properties and to have a favorable effect on blood pressure.
A systematic review and meta-analysis of clinical trials published 2019 on the effect of pycnogenol supplementation on blood pressure concluded:
The present systematic review and meta‐analysis suggest that pycnogenol had a favorable effect on SBP and DBP. 
Pycnogenol May Improve Cardio-Metabolic Health Markers
A recent systematic review and meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials published 2019 found that Pycnogenol could significantly improve multiple markers of cardiometabolic health.
Pycnogenol significantly reduced fasting blood glucose, glycated hemoglobin, systolic blood pressure, diastolic blood pressure, body mass index, LDL cholesterol and increased HDL cholesterol.
This meta-analysis suggests that pycnogenol may have a role in preventing cardiometabolic disease. However, further well-designed RCTs are recommended to evaluate its long-term effects and explore the optimal duration of use and dosage. 
Pycnogenol & Chronic Venous Insufficiency
Pycnogenol appears to be a highly promising alternative treatment for chronic venous insufficiency and other venous disorders such as deep vein thrombosis(DVT).
Clinical studies have shown that it can reduce oedema of the legs in CVI, reduce the incidence of deep venous thrombosis during long haul flights and enhance the healing of venous ulcers and haemorrhoidal episodes by topical application and/or oral administration. 
Best Pycnogenol Supplements
One of my favorite Pycnogenol supplements is Bio-Pycnogenol by Pharma Nord.
Pharma Nord are a very high quality manufacturer of various nutrition supplements from ubiquinol(Coenzyme Q10) to Pycnogenol.
The Bio-Pycnogenol come in 40mg tablets, making it very easy to dose as per the studies.
Bio-Pycnogenol by Pharma Nord is available to purchase from Amazon at: Pharma Nord Bio-Pycnogenol 40mg 150 Tablets
 The Effect of Pycnogenol Supplementation on Plasma C-Reactive Protein Concentration: a Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis
 Effect of pycnogenol supplementation on blood pressure: A systematic review and meta‐analysis of clinical trials
 Effects of pycnogenol on cardiometabolic health: A systematic review and meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials.
 Pycnogenol® in chronic venous insufficiency and related venous disorders.
The information in this article has not been evaluated by the FDA and should not be used to diagnose, cure or treat any disease, implied or otherwise.