Also known as rutoside, rutin is a bioflavonoid commonly used as a dietary supplement. Rutin is most famously known for its antioxidant power and its ability to enhance the absorption of vitamin C. Rutin's medicinal effects are still under investigation, but naturopaths commonly recommend it in the treatment of circulatory diseases, including stroke, hemorrhoids, varicose veins and chronic venous insufficiency. Like most antioxidants, rutin may also help to protect against cancer and signs of aging, by protecting the body from free radicals. Fortunately, rutin is available through a wide variety of affordable sources, including foods, medicinal herbs and supplements.
Foods Containing Rutin
Most foods do not contain rutin in therapeutic doses, and the amount of rutin in each food can vary widely depending on soil type and the genetic structure of the plant. Still, fruits and vegetables are highly absorbable sources of natural rutin. Citrus fruits like lemon, lime, grapefruit and orange are all excellent sources of rutin, which is most highly concentrated in the rind. Rutin is also found in rhubarb, apricots, apples and cranberries. While the potency of rutin in natural foods cannot be guaranteed, food sources are considered the most nutritious and holistic sources for the compound.
Herbalists may recommend the use of rue (also known as herb-of-grace) as a natural source of rutin. Rue contains several anti-inflammatory and medicinal compounds in addition to rutin itself, so it is a popular choice for people using rutin for medicinal purposes. Rue may be consumed as a loose herb, tablet, capsule or tea. Buckwheat is also an herbal source of rutin. While buckwheat tea is commonly consumed, naturopaths may recommend the use of whole-plant capsules, which also provide beneficial fiber.
Supplements containing isolated rutin are sometimes used in lieu of herbal and food sources. While natural rutin sources may vary in their potency, isolated rutin can contain an exact, measured dose of the compound. Many health food stores and supplement shops offer rutin in the form of a capsule or tablet, usually in doses ranging from 100 to 500 mg. Most manufacturers derive supplemental rutin from herbal sources like rue or buckwheat. Additionally, rutin may be found in some vitamin C supplements, since it enhances the absorption of this important nutrient.