Thursday, November 13, 2008

Low Cholesterol Risks

Professionals only supplements resources that I rely on in my clinical work usually publish reports on studies of natural supplements that help health concerns.

While most hear about how high cholesterol is so bad and how many risky drugs you need, often you don't hear that low cholesterol can impair your immune function or defer review of other more risky markers. Triglycerides included.

I've educated on triglyceride issues for so long it seems funny to me that its just hitting headlines. Still its not prominent in the media to equal the risk to your health.

The real warning should be that yes, high triglycerides will kill you.
The Deadly Truth about Low Cholesterol
It’s a common misconception with fatal consequences: Many people still believe that low total cholesterol levels mean you’re not at risk for stroke, heart attack, or any of the other deadly risks that come with cardiovascular disease.

But in reality, nothing could be further from the truth—and unless you’re paying close attention to one particular group of fats called triglycerides, your heart could be a ticking time bomb, no matter how healthy your cholesterol might look.

Triglycerides are naturally manufactured and stored by both your liver and fat cells. At normal levels, they’re a crucial source of energy for your body—but start producing more than you can store, and those excess triglycerides will be dumped into your bloodstream, where they can wreak havoc on your arteries, heart, pancreas, and liver.1

Studies have shown that abnormally high triglyceride levels raise your risk of heart attack threefold—and when accompanied by low levels of high-density lipoproteins (HDL, or “good” cholesterol), your risk jumps a staggering 16 times higher. In fact, this ratio is one of the single strongest predictors of heart attack risk, even more accurate than the better-known LDL (low-density lipoprotein, or “bad” cholesterol) to HDL ratio.2 And it isn’t just your heart that suffers. Studies show that risk of stroke, obesity, diabetes, and liver disease are all linked to these dangerous fats.3-5

Keeping triglycerides in check is absolutely critical to your health—and a simple combination of omega-3 fatty acids, niacin and a supplement blend™ can make all the difference. One recent trial showed that supplementing with fish oil daily slashed triglyceride levels by 46 percent in as little as eight weeks.6 And niacin boasts nearly five decades of research demonstrating that it not only reduces triglycerides and LDL cholesterol, but also increases HDL levels by up to 29 percent.7-8

Finally, be wary of your blood sugar: Numerous clinical trials have shown that refined carbs and sugar can actually double triglyceride production.9-10 Tossing sugary sodas and boosting protein intake can help.11 So can supplementing with natural blood sugar managing agents like bitter melon, goat’s rue and quercetin.12-13A comprehensive formulas like some we use in our work contain these ingredients along with several others, including cinnamon. Clinical trials reveal that this popular spice can reduce triglycerides by 23 to 30 percent.14


1. Webster’s New World Medical Dictionary, 3rd edition, William Schiel, Jr, MD, Author, 2008, Webster publishing.

2. Gaziano, JM., Hennekens, CH. Fasting triglycerides, high-density lipoprotein, and the risk of myocardial infarction. Circulation. 1997 Oct 21; 96(8):2520-5.

3. Grundy, SM., Cleeman, JI., Merz, CN., Brewer, HB, Jr., Clark, LT., Implications of recent clinical trials for the National Cholesterol Education Program Adult Treatment Panel III guidelines. Circulation. 2004 Jul 13; 110(2):227-39. Review. Erratum in: Circulation. 2004 Aug 10; 110 6):763.

4. Tanne, D., Koren-Morag, N., Graff, E. Blood lipids and first-ever ischemic stroke/transient ischemic attack in the Bezafibrate Infarction Prevention (BIP) Registry: high triglycerides constitute an independent risk factor. Circulation. 2001 Dec 11; 104(24):2892-7.

5. Kadikoylu G, Yavasoglu I, Bolaman Z. Plasma exchange in severe hypertriglyceridemia, a clinical study. Transfus Apher Sci. 2006 Jun; (3):253-7.

6. Vega GL, Chandalia M, Szczepaniak LS, Grundy SM. Effects of N-3 fatty acids on hepatic triglyceride content in humans. J Investig Med. 2008 Jun; 56(5):780-5.

7. Crouse, JR. 3rd. new developments in the use of niacin for treatment of hyperlipidemia: new considerations for use of an old drug. Coron Artery Dis. 1996 Apr; 7 (4):321-6.

8. Drexel H. Nicotinic acid in the treatment of hyperlipidaemia. Fundam Clin Pharmacol. 2007 Nov;21 Suppl 2:5-6.

9. Teff, KL., Elliott, SS., Tschop, M., Dietary fructose reduces circulating insulin and leptin, attenuates postprandial suppression of ghrelin, and increases in triglycerides in women. J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2004 Jun;89(6):2963-72.

10. Furtado, JD., Campos, H., Appel, LJ., Miler, ER. Effects of protein, unsaturated fat, and carbohydrate intakes on plasma apolipoprotein B and VLDL and LDL containing apolipoprotein C-III: results from the OmniHeart Trial. Am J Clin Nutr. 2008 Jun;87 (6): 1623-30.

11. Parks, EJ., Skokan, LE. , Timlin., Dingfelder, CS. Dietary sugars stimulate fatty acid synthesis in adults. J. Nutr. 2008 Jun: 138 (6): 1039-46.

12. Sridhar MG, Vinayagamoorthi R, Arul Suyambunathan V, Bobby Z, Selvaraj N. Bitter gourd (Momordica charantia) improves insulin sensitivity by increasing skeletal muscle insulin-stimulated IRS-1 tyrosine phosphorylation in high-fat-fed rats. Br J Nutr. 2008 Apr;99(4):806-12.

13. Rivera L, Morón R, Sánchez M, Zarzuelo A, Galisteo M. Quercetin ameliorates metabolic syndrome and improves the inflammatory status in obese zucker rats. Obesity (Silver Spring). 2008 Sep;16(9):2081-7.

14. Anderson RA. Chromium and polyphenols from cinnamon improve insulin sensitivity. Proc Nutr Soc. 2008 Feb;67(1):48-53.

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