Project “calm”: Lycored targets stress via supplementation for better heart health
07 Aug 2019 --- Dietary supplements player Lycored is focusing on stress relief via its supplement-ready tomato nutrient complex for heart health. Cardiomato contains six phytonutrients standardized to precise levels to induce a synergistic effect on cellular processes positively affecting cardiovascular wellbeing. The company has conducted a clinical research program to investigate the extract’s safety and effectiveness. Presently, Lycored has completed four controlled clinical trials involving a total of 271 participants and has investigated the benefits of Cardiomato on parameters relating to post-prandial stress and demonstrated a range of benefits for cardiovascular calm.
The word “stress” has several meanings, the company notes. It often refers to what are considered “external” pressures affecting our mental or emotional wellbeing. Beyond the general definitions, stress is seen as a major factor in cardiovascular health, being referred to in many cases as “oxidative stress”, a factor that plays a role in many cardiovascular conditions.
“The thesaurus tells us that one word with the opposite meaning of stress is ‘calm’, so Lycored’s philosophy is all about the pursuit of calm to mitigate different forms of stress. In our consumer-facing campaigns, we emphasize the importance of both psychological as well as emotional wellness. The pursuit of cardiovascular calm – for example by tackling oxidative stress – is at the heart of our clinical cardio health program,” says Golan Raz, Head of Lycored’s Global Health Division.
Speaking to NutritionInsight, Raz says that consumers have a growing understanding of the role of stress in both mental and physiological domains. As a result, calm is also a well understood and accepted concept. Beyond that, calm represents a message that is important to anyone who is interested in increasing their fitness level or overall wellbeing.
“At Lycored, we want to improve understanding of the mind-body link. That’s why we use the term ‘calm’, which is well understood in the context of mental wellness and in the context of cardiovascular wellness,” he says.
The company has developed two delivery systems for the supplement. The first is suitable for soft-gels and the second is an emulsion system designed for beverages of different types, according to Raz.
Reducing “oxidized LDL cholesterol”
Cardiomato has been shown to help reduce oxidized low-density lipoprotein (LDL), a form of cholesterol known for its impact on cardio-metabolic wellness. In a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study, 146 healthy normal weight individuals were given a daily dose of either Cardiomato or placebo over a two-week period. Oxidized LDL, glucose, insulin, and triglyceride responses were measured after ingestion of a high-fat meal before and at the end of the intervention.
Cardiomato was found to increase carotenoid levels in plasma and to reduce levels of LDL.
Circulatory system boost
The carotenoids in the supplement have also been shown to support a healthy circulatory system. In a study, 126 healthy men were randomized to receive either a placebo or standardized tomato extract daily for eight weeks. An increase in serum lycopene after supplementation was found to reduce oxidative stress, which may play a role in endothelial function.
Supporting blood pressure
Previous research indicates that Lycored’s standardized tomato extract helps maintain blood pressure within normal range.
“In our most recent clinical trial, researchers investigated its blood-pressure-lowering effects in hypertensive subjects, comparing them to lycopene alone,” Raz adds.
Sixty-one volunteers aged between 35-60 and affected by hypertension took part in a double-blind randomized study. They were given capsules containing the active standardized tomato extract (with doses of five, 15 or 30mg of lycopene), synthetic lycopene or a placebo, and were instructed to take them with their main meal.
Treatment with Lycored’s active standardized tomato extract containing 15 or 30mg of lycopene was associated with statistically significant reductions in blood pressure. However, similar effects were not observed for any of the other treatments.
The findings indicate that Cardiomato has beneficial outcomes for hypertensive patients that lycopene alone does not. A possible explanation for the results is a role for the other phytonutrients also present in Cardiomato. This would explain the lower effectiveness of pure synthetic lycopene, which does not contain any other tomato component.
In favor of cardiovascular calm
Lycored’s most recent study represents the evolution of its cardio-metabolic journey. The findings of the clinical research have suggested that Cardiomato’s combination of tomato phytonutrients has a favorable effect on various elements of cardiovascular health and management of stress reaction following a meal.
Proven to be safe and effective, Cardiomato serves as a holistic solution that contributes to vascular and cardio-metabolic health, according to the company. “Just as we try to achieve physical calm through exercise, and emotional calm through activities such as mindfulness and mediation, it provides a way to achieve daily cardiovascular calm,” Lycored notes.
The company is set to continue with more research on the potential of carotenoids for health.
“Carotenoids are scientifically known as nutrients which are essential for basic well-being but which can’t be produced by the body. In other words, the most efficient way to absorb carotenoids in a systemic way is through daily nutrition. Lycored is currently working on multiple projects involving science and technology. For example, we’ve just completed a study on prostate health and quality of sleep in men,” Raz concludes.
By Kristiana Lalou, with additional reporting from Laxmi Haigh
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