Here is a collection of reviews on our pine pollen tinctures and pine pollen powders!
Think of pine pollen as a nutrient-dense super spice that can add a substantial boost to your day. Pine pollen has a mild, delicate taste and a dry texture that works well in many recipes and drinks. The health benefits of pine pollen are enormous, and its use dates back millennia.
In Chinese culture, people add pine pollen powder to food as a spice for flavor enhancement. In cups and larger quantities, it is used in cultural cakes and especially pastries. In small amounts and teaspoon amounts, pine pollen powder can be added to virtually any food as an enhancer for its tonifying and adaptogenic qualities.
In addition to your daily routine of supplements, 1tsp (1.5g) a day of our pine pollen powder is our recommended serving size. The grains are so jampacked with bioactive brassinosteroids and phytonutrients that many people will likely notice adaptogenic results within days or weeks, especially those who take the pollen for its anabolic quantities and stamina boosting effects. Dosing is recommended 2-3 times a day.
On the other extreme, for those taking the pine pollen as part of a training routine, before or after a sporting event, or for general recovery, we recommend 1tbsp. three times a day.
Please Use Care: Excessive (upwards of 2-3tbsp. Per day) servings of pine pollen powder can have a laxative effect.
Naturopathic Note: Like any superfood, moderating your pine pollen intake is critical. The body can become accustomed to the bio-active nutrients in pine pollen - as such, we highly encourage cycling/rotating your use of pine pollen as a supplement. "Five-Two is my rule thumb," says Dr. Mushtagh. ND - "Five days on, two days off, or five weeks on, two weeks off."
We make our pine pollen tinctures to increase the bioavailability of specific bioactive molecules. Our dual extracted (alcohol, glycerin) tincture concentrates the phytoandrogens, antioxidants, polysaccharides, and auxins in a suspended medium. Each 2ml of the tincture equals 335mg of our raw pine pollen. At 2mL, 2-3 times a day, this potent tincture will provide excellent results for most people.
According to our testing, the amino acid, vitamin, antioxidant, and other nutrient profiles are virtually identical: with some contrast over the profile of the bio-identical androgens. However, it is like comparing two varieties of apples when it comes to taste, smell, color, and pollen grain size. We are currently profiling the brassinosteroids in the two types to understand subtle molecular differences better. Until then, it comes down to personal preference and which resonates with you the most.
Are there any potential side effects from taking pine pollen as a supplement?
Our raw, wildcrafted pine pollen is quite safe for regular use. Think of pine pollen as a vegan alternative to royal jelly, only with many other unique nutrients and multiple times the plant hormones.
The pine pollen tincture poses a potential risk for a pregnant woman or young children, and thus, like many other herbs in this age group, can be avoided.
There is also a possible risk of taking the tincture too much and for too long. Dependency is possible, in the sense that the body will assume it has plenty of the stimulant in the form of plant hormones, and after an initial phase, reduce its natural hormone regulation. A hypothetical, severe case is called an endocrine system shut down, which happens in anabolic steroid users. Although, this has not been reported with pine pollen - likely because the potency is much lower than prescription drugs.
There are no official anecdotal reports of pine pollen powder or tincture interactions, whether positive or negative. However, since pine pollen is abundant in powerful phytoandrogens, those with medical conditions related to sex hormones should consult their naturopath or medical doctor before use.
Extensive research suggests that both genders (♀ & ♂) would be wise to ensure they maintain healthy levels of androgens (male hormones), which becomes increasingly important with each added year of aging. There is an important link between low androgen levels and increased disease risk, obesity, and premature death in both woman and men. In fact low androgens are the primary cause of symtoms associated with menopause and pre-menopuase. The androgens in pine pollen have a balancing effect and thus most woman experience the effect of the pollen often faster than men do.
The pine pollen grain has two cell wall layers. The first, the endospore, is a thin, delicate wall of unaltered cellulose. The second, more robust outer wall, is called the exine. Based on animal studies and depending on the type of pine pollen, experts estimated that we assimilate up to 50-60% of the raw pine pollen that we ingest.
There are no reliable studies to show the difference in human digestion of cracked vs. non-cracked, live pine pollen cells; the only studies are in test tubes. They show that after cracking the cells, you get a small increase in solubility of the nutrients. A mere 15% or less solubility of all nutrients was observed.
The outer layer of the pine pollen is an ancient mechanism designed by Mother Nature to protect the light-sensitive brassinosteroids and other growth-promoting ingredients like gibberellins and abscisic acid from damage by oxidation and light. Considering that cracking pollen's cell wall will expose these ingredients to air, the small increased digestibility of the nutrients in the cracked cells is offset by the oxidation that comes as a direct result of exposing the vital nutrients to the harsh elements.
In our experience working with raw, wild Canadian pine pollen vs. cracked cell Himalayan pine pollen, we can attest that the broken cell Himalayan pine pollen takes a brownish hue in tinctures - evidence of oxidation and thus a loss of nutrients.