A combination of grape seed and grape skin extract may be more beneficial to the health than when consumed independently. So suggested Dr. John D. Folts of the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine at the annual meeting of the Federation of the American Societies of Experimental Biology (FASEB). "Often, functional foods are broken down into their constituent parts in hopes of finding a so-called "more active" ingredient," he explained. "Yet, when we tested acommercially available grape seed extract and grape skin extract we found that, individually, their potency for inhibiting the clotting system was quite low,but when they were combined-as they might be in purple grape juice or red wine, for example-the two components together displayed a significant addedeffect. In other words, when they were combined they were much more potent," he continued. Dr. Folts looked at the ability of a commercial grape seed extract and a grape skin extract to inhibit platelet aggregation when incubated in whole blood drawn from healthy volunteers. Grape seed extract inhibited platelet aggregation by only 9% (p<0.01). Grape skin extract showed no measurable effect on platelet aggregation. Yet, when the two were incubated together at the same concentration, inhibition of platelet aggregation soared to 91% (p<0.001).The measurement of platelet aggregation quantifies, among other things, the blood's tendency to form clots and adhere to imperfections in the walls of blood vessels. Clots may form temporary blockages that reduce or stop the flow of blood through blood vessels. Dr. Folts maintained that " The best way for people to get that synergy (between seeds and skins) is to drink whole grape juice or red wine, both of which contain both seed and skin components, rather than taking commercially available extracts of one or the other."