It has been confirmed in numerous clinical trials that both niacin and inositol hexanicotinate (a non-flushing, inositol-bound form of niacin) are remarkably effective for lowering total blood cholesterol levels, essentially by reducing cholesterol production in the liver. An added advantage is that these supplements have also been shown to increase levels of HDL (good) cholesterol. Niacin and inositol hexanicotinate also lower levels of lipoprotein A (which carries and deposits cholesterol into damaged areas in the arteries and impedes the breakdown of clots), triglycerides and fibrinogcn (a protein involved in the formation of blood clots). Take with B-complex to ensure B vitamin balance.
Oxidised LDL cholesterol is a risk factor for the development of atherosclerosis. As a potent fat-soluble antioxidant, astaxanthin has been shown in studies to prevent oxidation and has therefore been proposed as a protective factor in cardiovascular disease. Preliminary studies also suggest that astaxanthin may be helpful in increasing levels of HDL (good) cholesterol while reducing potentially harmful LDL cholesterol. A high ratio of HDL to LDL is associated with a lower risk of heart disease. A blood pressure lowering effect has also been noted in research, possibly due to an influence on nitric oxide – which relaxes the smooth muscle around arteries.
Numerous studies have identified the potential cholesterol lowering effects of soluble fibres such as psyllium, apple pectin and oat bran. In one study researchers noted an 11 to 15 percent reduction in serum cholesterol in 140 men eating 75 grams of oat bran per day for six weeks. Soluble fibres appear to increase the level of faecal excretion of cholesterol.
Disturbances in the balance of intestinal ecology can lead to problems of detoxification and studies have recently revealed the positive impact of probiotic supplements on cholesterol levels. In one study total cholesterol was reduced by 20% following a period of supplementation with a combination of organisms including Lactobacillus acidophilus and bifidobacterium lactis.
PMFs are extremely bioactive and potent bioflavonoids found in citrus fruits. Specific PMFs, including nobiletin and tangeretin, have been found to help control LDL cholesterol by inhibiting the creation of its building blocks: apolipoprotein B and triglycerides. Apolipoprotein B is considered the primary building block, making up almost 90 percent of the LDL cholesterol complex. Interestingly, triglycerides are one of the key contributors to the formation of apolipoprotein B.
Tocotnenols, along with tocopherols, are members of the vitamin E family and are extracted from the fruit of the palm tree. Like vitamin E, palm tocotrienols are potent antioxidants, but they can also help to normalise levels of the enzyme HMG-CoA reductase, which is necessary for cholesterol synthesis in the liver and other tissues. The tocotrienols in Sytrinol appear to reduce the levels of this important enzyme by increasing the rate at which the enzyme molecules degrade rather than simply blocking the action of the enzyme – as is the case with certain types of cholesterol lowering drugs.
Research has shown that C3G from purple corn decreases the susceptibility of blood lipids (cholesterol and triglycerides) to oxidise. Protecting cholesterol from oxidation is one of the most important factors in maintaining cardiovascular health. Oxidised cholesterol is a major contributor to atherosclerotic plaque that can build up in arteries.
Nutrient/Herb Typical intake range
Niacin (as inositol hexanicotinate) (1)
Psyllium husk fibre
500 – lOOOmg per day (plus B-Complex)
4 – 8mg per day
2 – 6g per day with glass of water
1-10 billion organisms per day
1 50 – 300mg per day
500-1 500mg per day dried extract
Nuts and seeds
Vegetarian diets are associated with lower incidence of cardiovascular disease
Achieve ideal body weight
Take regular exercise
1. High-dose niacin in any form should be avoided in those with pre-existing liver disease (or elevated liver enzymes) or gall bladder disease, unless under medical supervision. Long-term, high-dose niacin or inositol hexanicotinate should be avoided in diabetics unless medically supervised. High-dose niacin should be avoided in cases of pregnancy, peptic ulcers or gout unless under medical supervision. Taking high-dose niacin with alcohol, beta-blockers, mecamylamine or pargyline may cause severe hypotension (low blood pressure).
2. Do not use during pregnancy or lactation. Concurrent use with cholesterol lowering drugs under medical supervision only.