Short-Term Effect of Nutraceutical Fruit Juices on Lipid Metabolism in Patients with Acquired Hypercholesterolemia

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The crucial role of dyslipidaemia, especially hypercholesterolemia, in the development of atherosclerosis-related cardiovascular diseases has been extensively documented in genetic, pathologic, observational and intervention studies. The European guidelines for dyslipidaemia management include the possible use of lipid-lowering nutraceuticals to support a relatively large number of natural compounds. In this context, we have conducted a study to investigate whether dietary supplementation with a functional nutraceutical beverage, containing a standardized polyphenolic fraction from fruit, red yeast rice, phytosterols, and berberine complexed with β-cyclodextrin, could positively affect serum lipid concentration in 14 subjects with hypercholesterolemia. After 12 weeks of treatment, dietary supplementation with this nutraceutical combination was associated with significant improvements in total cholesterol, low-density lipoprotein cholesterol, non-high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (non-HDL-C) and apolipoprotein B, compared to baseline. Compliance was excellent and no adverse effects were reported. In conclusion, this study demonstrates that 100 mL of a functional beverage containing lipid-lowering nutraceuticals safely leads to significant improvements in serum lipids in subjects with moderate hypercholesterolemia. Future research is needed to unravel the role that the polyphenols contained in fruit extracts play in the reduction of cholesterolemia and in cardiovascular disease prevention.

Each 100 mL bottle contained:

  • Kiwi, Annurca apple, bergamot and grape juice;
  • Two grams of phytosterols;
  • Red yeast rice containing 2.9 mg of monacolins from Monascus purpureus;
  • 100 mg of berberine complexed with β-cyclodextrin.

The four types of fruit were selected on the basis of the findings of recent studies or meta-analysis indicating their intrinsic capacity to improve blood serum lipid profiles.

Those who are familiar with cyclodextrins may ask the question: how much cyclodextrin itself contributes to the lipid-lowering effects of the polyphenols?

Ardissino, D.; Colletti, A.; Pellizzato, M.; Pagliari, G.; Di Pierro, F.; Cravotto, G. Short-Term Effect of Nutraceutical Fruit Juices on Lipid Metabolism in Patients with Acquired Hypercholesterolemia. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 202324, 7358.

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