A Natural Alternative to Statins

A Natural Alternative to Statins

Image courtesy of  SOMMAI at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Image courtesy of SOMMAI at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

 

Bergamot orange may provide a natural alternative to statins in the fight to reduce cholesterol levels, according to recent articles here and here. Studies have concluded that too much cholesterol in the bloodstream is linked to arterial damage and increased risk of heart attack and stroke.

A Natural Alternative to Statins

One article quotes:

 “The bergamot orange, grown in the Mediterranean, is being hailed as ‘nature’s statin’. It contains chemicals called citrus polyphenols that appear to block production of blood fats, boost metabolism and prevent cholesterol absorption in the gut.”
“Research on more than 200 patients with high levels of blood fats, carried out by the University of Cantanzaro in Italy, found ‘bad’ cholesterol (LDL) reduced by 39 per cent after a month of taking the extract. It also reduced blood sugars by 22 per cent and raised ‘good’ cholesterol by 41 per cent.”

The leader of the research team, Dr V. Mollace said:

“Bergamot contains extremely large amounts of polyphenols, as compared to other citrus species. Two of these, Brutelidin and Metilidin, directly inhibit cholesterol biosynthesis in a similar way to statins and they are not found in any other citrus derivatives.”

The article also reports that in a different research project an eminent Australian cardiologist has been giving bergamot extract supplements to about 700 of his patients and has seen major benefits in cholesterol reduction amongst them. The article here explains that:

 “Within a few weeks of starting the supplement, some of those patients have totally avoided the need for statins while others have reduced their statin dose to control dyslipidemia. As a bonus outcome, their blood glucose and middle obesity have also significantly reduced.”

“Bergamot extract blocks the HMG CoA reductase enzyme at a different level than statins. As a result, myalgia and other side effects typically associated with statins can be avoided because bergamot does not block the component that depletes the muscular co-enzyme q10.”

Dr Walker, the Australian heart specialist said:

“Bergamot extract (BergametTM) also inhibits cholesterol absorption in the gut, the same way plant sterols do. That’s why I ask my patients to take it 15 minutes before meal twice a day, in the afternoons and evenings, to block cholesterol absorption from food,”

Experts in this field have said that more research is needed to verify these findings and that bergamot is not thought at present to be a satisfactory replacement for statins for those at high risk of heart disease, but the capsules do seem to be useful and are without the sometimes serious side effects that can occur with statins. There is no doubt that a natural alternative to statins would be a tremendous benefit to thousands of people with high blood pressure and high cholesterol although it might be something of a blow to pharmaceutical companies who are making a fortune from statins.

 

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