Tocotrienol E Boosts HDL Cholesterol While Lowering Advanced Glycation End Products
Byron J. Richards, Board Certified Clinical Nutritionist
The tocotrienol form of vitamin E is now on an anti-aging tear. Recently I reported how this form of vitamin E was shown to extend the length of telomeres, enabling cells to live longer. A new human study shows that it boosts protective HDL cholesterol while lowering a key marker of aging – advanced glycation end products. A new animal experiment shows that tocotrienols significantly reduce the damage from experimentally induced stroke. These new studies add even more evidence of the extreme health benefits offered by this special form of vitamin E, as I extensively reviewed in my previous article, Tocotrienols: Twenty Years of Dazzling Cardiovascular and Cancer Research.
The human study is a randomized controlled study wherein 31 of 62 participants were given 160 mg per day for six months of tocotrienol E1 and the other half received a placebo. HDL levels rose in the tocotrienol group with a significant benefit to the HDL/LDL ratio. HDL is needed to haul spent LDL back to your liver so it can be rejuvenated. If spent/damaged LDL spends to much time in your circulation, due to a lack of HDL tow trucks, then circulatory damage can pile up. This study shows that tocotrienol E is an effective way to help boost up protective HDL. The amount of change in the HDL/LDL ratio is consistent with improvements that represent a 22.5% risk reduction for cardiovascular events.
This study also showed that there was improved antioxidant function. This is important for several reasons. It means that the HDL that is being produced is healthy HDL. Simply having more HDL may not really mean anything if it is not in good shape itself. Furthermore, there was a significant reduction in advanced glycation end products (AGEs) in the tocotrienol group. AGEs reflect damage to proteins that have been glued together with sugar – a process that cements your body structures that are supposed to be flexible. Increased amount of AGEs is a key marker of unhealthy aging and is a common finding in people with failing health. The fact that tocotrienols could significantly reduce AGEs is evidence of important anti-aging properties of these nutrients.
A new animal study involved 11 dogs (57 pounds on average) there were given 200 mg tocotrienols2 twice a day for 10 weeks. They were then subjected to experimentally-induced stroke by middle cerebral artery occlusion. Detailed imaging of their brains was done at 1 hour and 24 hour post stroke to assess the amount of damage compared to the control group. Results showed much less brain damage in the tocotrienol group, including an ability to maintain connections of neurons. The tocotrienol group was able to maintain significantly better circulation within the area affected by stroke, a key reason for less damage. The extremely positive outcome from this animal study is now paving the way for a study with patients who have already suffered one stroke and are therefore at higher risk for a second stroke.
It is pretty clear that tocotrienols are an excellent cardiovascular support, anti-aging nutrient. It’s well worth supplementing for these reasons.
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