Lowering Cholesterol with Natural Nutrients
By Max Wardlow
Lowering cholesterol without the negative side effects of cholesterol drugs is quite possible now thanks to a new generation of nutritional supplements that couple traditional nutrients with the latest research to reach new levels of effectiveness.
There are several nutrients with both solid scientific documentation of effectiveness, and traditional "anecdotal" evidence built up over hundreds of years of use in the worlds oldest healing tradition.
One of these nutrients is policosanol, a natural nutrient extracted from sugar cane, rice bran and bee's wax. This nutrient has solid research documentation and is proven to lower cholesterol even more effectively than statin drugs, without negative side effects, and it does not increase blood sugar levels.
Since cholesterol is neccessary for many important body functions, when lowering LDL (bad) cholesterol it's critical to maintain a balance between LDL and HDL cholesterol, which is considered to be the "good" cholesterol.
In clinical studies policosanol has been proven to maintain the balance between LDL and HDL, significantly decreasing total cholesterol and low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol and increasing high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol.
Policosanol vs, the statin drug Lovastatin (Mevacor)
In a study comparing Policosanol with the statin drug Lovastatin (Mevacor) over the course of 12 weeks, Policosanol was found to be superior at lowering LDL cholesterol while raising HDL.
The results of the study show that policosanol reduced total blood cholesterol by 14.2% compared to Lovastatin's 14.0% reduction.
Policosanol also reduced LDL (bad) Cholesterol by 20.4% next to Lovastatin's 16.8% reduction, and raised HDL (good) by 7.5% where Lovastatin showed no change.
Finally, the overall ratio of LDL to HDL reduction was 23.7% for Policosanol and 14.8% for Lovastatin.
As you can see from these results, policosanol is one of the safest and most effective ways to lower cholesterol without the dangers and uncomfortable side effects of cholesterol drugs.
But remember that these results apply only to the genuine policosanol extracted from sugar cane wax which is produced in Cuba.
When considering a supplement containing policosanal you should be aware that there are many products on the the market that are using an incomplete form of policosanol called octacosanol. Octacosanol will not give the results outlined in the clinical trials mentioned.
Also, some products have come on the U.S. market claiming to be effective at lowering cholesterol, but often these products use policosanal manufactured from beeswax. Like octacosanol, this form of policosanal is not supported by research as being effective at reducing cholesterol.
Some more health issues that policosanal helps with are thrombosis, angina pectoris, stroke, high blood presssure and atherosclerosis.
It has also been shown in studies to be very safe. In one such study rats were given a daily dose 2,000 times in excess of the recommended levels with no negative effects.
Another herb used for thousands of years in the ancient healing tradition of Ayurveda is Guggul (also called Guggulipid). This herb has been proven in recent clinical trials to outperform the statin drugs, with no negative side effects.
Guggulipid is the extract of the gum resin of the Commiphora mukul tree, which is native to India. Guggulipid is used for lowering high cholesterol, arthritis, atherosclerosis, acne, skin diseases, and weight loss.
As well as lowering cholesterol, other evidence suggests guggul extracts might have anti-inflammatory activity and may also lower lipoprotein and C-reactive protein, which are important risk markers for heart disease.
Policosanol and Guggilipid are key to lowering cholesterol naturally. If you have high cholesterol you'll want to make sure that the nutritional supplement you choose includes them.