The Health Benefits of Hesperidin

The Citrus Antioxidant May Boost Heart Health

Hesperidin is a bioflavonoid, a type of plant pigment with antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects found primarily in citrus fruit. Oranges, grapefruit, lemon, and tangerines all contain hesperidin, which is also available in supplement form. 

Hesperidin is purported to provide a wide range of health benefits, ranging from cancer treatment to hot flash relief. Not all of these benefits are supported by strong scientific research.

People drinking orange juice
Betsie Van Der Meer / Taxi / Getty Images

Health Benefits

Hesperidin is thought to have beneficial effects on blood vessels. It's touted as a natural remedy for a number of health problems, including allergieshemorrhoidshigh blood pressure, hot flashes, hay fever, sinusitis, symptoms associated with menopausal changes, premenstrual syndrome, and varicose veins. Hesperidin is also said to improve circulation, reduce inflammation, and help fight cancer.

Research on the health effects of hesperidin is fairly limited. However, there's some evidence that hesperidin may offer certain benefits. Here's a look at some key study findings.

Heart Health

Consumption of citrus fruit has been associated with a reduced risk of cardiovascular disease. Several clinical trials exploring hesperidin's effect on cardiovascular disease markers have yielded mixed results.

A 2016 study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, for instance, investigated the effect of six weeks of hesperidin supplementation on blood vessels in men and women who were overweight. While there was no significant change in flow-mediated dilation (a test used to measure artery, or endothelial, function), the subset of people with relatively healthy endothelial function saw further significant improvement in endothelial function after eating a high-fat meal compared to those who took a placebo.

In addition, regular hesperidin consumption may decrease blood pressure and improve blood vessel function, suggests a study conducted with overweight men published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition in 2011. After four weeks of daily consumption of orange juice or a hesperidin beverage, participants' diastolic blood pressure was significantly lower, and their endothelial function (after eating a meal) had significantly improved.

Hesperidin also shows promise for people who have had a heart attack, suggests a study published in the Journal of the American College of Nutrition in 2015. For the study, people who'd experienced a heart attack took either a hesperidin supplement or a placebo for four weeks. At the study's end, those who took the hesperidin had significantly decreased levels of some inflammatory markers.

Cognitive Health

Consumption of 100% orange juice, which is naturally bioflavonoid-rich, may benefit cognitive function in healthy older adults, according to a small study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition in 2015. Cognitive function was significantly better after eight weeks of consuming pure, unadulterated orange juice compared to eight weeks of a low-bioflavonoid orange-flavored drink. 

Hemorrhoids

In a 2015 study in Techniques in Coloproctology, a supplement containing a combination of bioflavonoids (hesperidin, diosmin, and troxerutin) was found to aid in the treatment of hemorrhoids. For the study, 134 people with acute hemorrhoids were treated with either the hesperidin-diosmin-troxerutin combination or a placebo for 12 days.

Compared to those taking the placebo, people who took the bioflavonoids experienced a significant reduction in pain and bleeding. The proportion of people who reported the persistence of swelling and thrombosis also decreased significantly. After six days, the amount of oral pain medication needed by those taking the bioflavonoids was also lower. 

Possible Side Effects

Hesperidin may trigger a number of side effects, including abdominal pain, diarrhea, contact dermatitis, and nausea.

Hesperidin supplements may not be safe for people taking certain medications (including anticoagulants, blood pressure drugs, and calcium channel blockers). Therefore, it's important to consult your physician if you're considering using hesperidin in combination with other medications. 

Clinical research suggests that hesperidin may affect blood clotting and increase the risk of bleeding. People taking anticoagulant/antiplatelet medications and those with bleeding disorders shouldn't take hesperidin. In addition, it's safest to avoid hesperidin and foods, such as citrus, containing it within two weeks of surgery (before and after).

There was a reported case of thrombocytopenic purpura (a disorder that can lead to easy or excessive bleeding or bruising) associated with the use of two supplements containing mainly citrus bioflavonoids.

You can get tips on using supplements here. Keep in mind that self-treating a condition and avoiding or delaying standard care may have serious consequences. In addition, the safety of many supplements in pregnant women, nursing mothers, children, and those with medical conditions or who are taking medications has not been established.

Dosage and Preparation

There is not enough scientific data to provide a recommended dose of hesperidin. Various doses have been used in clinical studies of the supplement.

For example, to investigate hesperidin's role in improving circulation in the legs, a product containing 150 mg of hesperidin methyl chalcone, 150 mg of butcher's broom root extract, and 100 mg of ascorbic acid was used.

More generally, dosages of 50-150 mg have typically been used in studies, although some studies have used upward of 600 mg over a period of 4-12 weeks. However, the safety of long-term use of any of these amounts has not been sufficiently studied or established.

The appropriate dose for you may depend on factors including your age, gender, and medical history. Speak to your health care provider to get personalized advice.

What to Look For

You can increase your intake of hesperidin by consuming more lemons, limes, sweet oranges, tangerines, and grapefruit. Fresh and dried forms of the herb peppermint are another significant dietary source.

Some people buy hesperidin supplements in health food stores or online. Since supplements are largely unregulated in the United States, keep in mind that when you take a purchased supplement, you may get ingredients other than hesperidin. The National Institutes of Health (NIH) recommends that you look for a Supplement Facts label on a product before you buy. This label will contain vital information, including the amount of active ingredients per serving and other added ingredients like fillers, binders, and flavorings.

The NIH suggests that you look for a product that contains a seal of approval from a third-party organization that provides quality testing. These organizations include U.S. Pharmacopeia, ConsumerLab.com, and NSF International. A seal of approval from one of these organizations does not guarantee the product's safety or effectiveness, but it does provide assurance that the product was properly manufactured, contains the ingredients listed on the label, and does not contain harmful levels of contaminants.

A Word From Verywell

While increasing your intake of citrus fruits may be of some benefit, doing so shouldn't be used as a substitute for medical treatment or overall healthy lifestyle practices. If you're thinking of trying hesperidin, speak with your primary care provider to weigh the pros and cons and discuss whether it's appropriate for you.

Was this page helpful?
Article Sources
Verywell Health uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy.
  1. Mahmoud AM, Bautista RJH, Sandhu MA, Hussein OE. Beneficial Effects of Citrus Flavonoids on Cardiovascular and Metabolic HealthOxidative Medicine and Cellular Longevity. 2019;2019:1-19. doi:10.1155/2019/5484138

  2. Li C, Schluesener H. Health-promoting effects of the citrus flavanone hesperidinCritical Reviews in Food Science and Nutrition. 2015;57(3):613-631. doi:10.1080/10408398.2014.906382

  3. Mahmoud AM, Hernández Bautista RJ, Sandhu MA, Hussein OE. Beneficial Effects of Citrus Flavonoids on Cardiovascular and Metabolic HealthOxid Med Cell Longev. 2019;2019:5484138. Published 2019 Mar 10. doi:10.1155/2019/5484138

  4. Salden BN, Troost FJ, Groot ED. Randomized clinical trial on the efficacy of hesperidin 2S on validated cardiovascular biomarkers in healthy overweight individualsThe American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. 2016;104(6):1523-1533. doi:10.3945/ajcn.116.136960

  5. Morand C, Dubray C, Milenkovic D, et al. Hesperidin contributes to the vascular protective effects of orange juice: a randomized crossover study in healthy volunteers. Am J Clin Nutr. 2011;93(1):73-80. doi:10.3945/ajcn.110.004945

  6. Haidari F, Heybar H, Jalali MT, Engali KA, Helli B, Shirbeigi E. Hesperidin Supplementation Modulates Inflammatory Responses Following Myocardial InfarctionJournal of the American College of Nutrition. 2015;34(3):205-211. doi:10.1080/07315724.2014.891269

  7. Kean RJ, Lamport DJ, Dodd GF. Chronic consumption of flavanone-rich orange juice is associated with cognitive benefits: an 8-wk, randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial in healthy older adultsThe American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. 2015;101(3):506-514. doi:10.3945/ajcn.114.088518

  8. Giannini I, Amato A, Basso L. Flavonoids mixture (diosmin, troxerutin, hesperidin) in the treatment of acute hemorrhoidal disease: a prospective, randomized, triple-blind, controlled trialTechniques in Coloproctology. 2015;19(6):339-345. doi:10.1007/s10151-015-1302-9

  9. Aguilar peralta GR, Arévalo gardoqui J, Llamas macías FJ, Navarro ceja VH, Mendoza cisneros SA, Martínez macías CG. Clinical and capillaroscopic evaluation in the treatment of chronic venous insufficiency with Ruscus aculeatus, hesperidin methylchalcone and ascorbic acid in venous insufficiency treatment of ambulatory patients. Int Angiol. 2007;26(4):378-84.

  10. Lv X, Zhao S, Ning Z. Citrus fruits as a treasure trove of active natural metabolites that potentially provide benefits for human healthChem Cent J. 2015;9:68. Published 2015 Dec 24. doi:10.1186/s13065-015-0145-9

Additional Reading
  • Hesperidin. Natural Medicines Database. Professional Monograph. 2/13/2019