Natural Health News – A recently published analysis suggests that probiotics in the diet can help lower cholesterol levels and reduce other cardiovascular risk factors for disease.
Cardiovascular disease can be caused by several factors, including hypertension, diabetes, high cholesterol or established disease and diseases involving narrowed or blocked blood vessels. If the vessels that supply blood to the heart, which can lead to a heart attack clogged; blocked vessels supplying the brain can lead to stroke.
According to World Health Organization cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death globally: more people die annually from CVDs than from any other cause. What you need to know
“ High levels of cholesterol are a risk factor for cardiovascular disease -. The number one cause of premature death worldwide
“ Previous research has indicated that probiotics may have a role to play to help reduce high cholesterol.
“ This new set of results from several studies analysis and found that yogurt products enriched with multiple strains of probiotics, had positive effects on total cholesterol, low-density lipoprotein (LDL), and other risk factors for cardiovascular disease.
In this meta-analysis, published in Annals of Medicine researchers pooled the results of 15 studies (with a total of 788 people). They concluded that probiotics had positive effects on total cholesterol, low density lipoprotein (LDL, or “bad” cholesterol), body mass index, waist circumference and inflammatory markers .
While the addition of probiotics in any way that appeared to be useful, researchers found significant effects on total cholesterol and LDL cholesterol when probiotics are consumed as part of milk or yogurt fermented compared with capsule form, when probiotics consumed for at least eight weeks and when multiple probiotic strains were ingested (instead of only a single strain).
They conclude that supplementation with probiotics is “effective in reducing lipid levels and factors associated with co-existing cardiovascular disease.”
Previous research shows the benefits
Although this was a relatively small part of analysis is not the first to show that probiotics can help keep cholesterol levels under control.
In 2000 another meta-analysis in European Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that fermented milk dairy products containing lactic acid bacteria were effective in the short term, in reducing cholesterol levels. The authors speculate that this is because the good bacteria help
Another analysis that included five double-blind studies examined the effects of a yogurt with different strains of probiotics in serum cholesterol levels in the short term (2-8 weeks) found a decreased 4% in total cholesterol and 5% decrease in LDL concentration in serum.
In a trial where women live yogurt (300 g per day, 3.5% fat) containing 4 different live cultures found that yogurt consumption increased serum HDL (cholesterol were delivered “good” cholesterol) levels leading to a better ratio of “good” cholesterol to “bad”.
There is also evidence that probiotics may have a beneficial effect on hypertension – which can be caused by high cholesterol -., So
- See also our article Lowering cholesterol without statins