While pursuing the latest research studies on natural lipid management agents, it occurred to me that some of these compounds excel at certain aspects of lipid modulation while others are exceptional at reducing other markers of lipid imbalance. For example, the research demonstrates very clearly that fish oil supplementation lowers many blood lipid markers, but it isespecially efficient at decreasing triglycerides and the systemic inflammatory marker C-reactive protein, in various recent studies under a variety of clinical settings.
Pantethine is the active methylated form of pantothenic acid and is a vastly underrated tool in the clinical setting of blood lipid modulation. It has been shown to reduce a wide range of blood lipid factors such as total cholesterol, triglycerides, VLDL while raising HDL levels.
Red Yeast Rice
Monascus pupurus or red yeast rice (RYR) is related to statin medications in that one of the primary active compounds in RYR, monacolin K, has the same mechanism of action as traditional statins. Additionally, red yeast rice has been reported to contain sterols, a class of plant based compounds known to help block the absorption of fats and cholesterol from the diet.
It is certainly not a stretch to say that red yeast rice has been shown to be as effective as statins at lowering many markers of serum lipids while additionally lowering what is now being considered more relevant markers of cardiovascular disease, lipoprotein (a) and C-reactive protein.
Tocotrienols, along with the tocopherols, are the two families that make up the complete vitamin E complex. Tocotrienols, especially the delta and gamma fractions, have long been touted for their cancer protective qualities and have also demonstrated particular efficacy in modulating blood lipids, in particular LDL and total cholesterol.
Designs for Health’s Lipotrienols RYR™ is a powerful combination of natural substances intended to support normal blood lipid levels and optimize cardiac and vascular health. This unique formulation includes certified organic red yeast rice and high delta-fraction tocotrienols.
Astaxanthin is a carotenoid compound found in the tiny shrimp-like creature krill and also in specific species of algae. It is a powerful antioxidant that has also been shown to possess various beneficial therapeutic properties, including applications in cognitive health, sports recovery, cancer prevention, PMS and also cardiovascular health. Astaxanthin has been shown to significantly reduce LDL cholesterol and triglycerides while raising HDL and mitigating the progression of atherosclerosis.
Finally, the use of vitamin B3 (Niacin) has for many years been a standard of care regarding lipid modulation as its use has consistently shown efficacy in balancing multiple blood lipid parameters, especially increasing HDL and lowering lipoprotein(a) while also improving endothelial function and reducing atherosclerosis.
Whether or not one fully embraces the “cholesterol theory” of cardiovascular disease, is one thing. For those that feel that cholesterol reduction is an important clinical and therapeutic goal, there are fortunately many natural substances that can be used to obtain outstanding clinical results while improving metabolic risk factors, which include inflammation, atherosclerosis and certain important lipid blood markers – minus the myriad of unwanted side effects associated with statin medications.
by Michael Fuhrman D.C.