Cholesterol :: Pomelit fruit can help lower blood cholesterol

A fruit known commercially as Israeli Jaffa Sweetie can help lower blood cholesterol levels and hike blood antioxidant activity.

Cholesterol is a fat-like substance that is made by the body and is found naturally in animal foods such as meat, fish, poultry, eggs, and dairy products. Foods high in cholesterol include liver and organ meats, egg yolks, and dairy fats. Cholesterol is carried in the blood. When cholesterol levels are too high, some of the cholesterol is deposited on the walls of the blood vessels. Over time, the deposits can build up causing the blood vessels to narrow and blood flow to decrease. The cholesterol in food, like saturated fat, tends to raise blood cholesterol, which increases the risk for heart disease. Total blood cholesterol levels above 240 mg/dl are considered high. Levels between 200-239 mg/dl are considered borderline high. Levels under 200 mg/dl are considered desirable.

Researchers at Hebrew University of Jerusalem gave 72 patients suffering from elevated cholesterol levels and who had undergone bypass surgery daily supplements of Sweetie juice for 30 days, the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry said.

The patients, who ranged in age from 43 to 71, were divided into three groups of 24 each. One group received a daily supplement of 100 milliliters of the juice; a second received 200 milliliters; and a third, the control group, received none.

The results showed definite lowering of LDL or “bad” blood cholesterol and an increase in blood antioxidant activity in patients from the two groups who drank the juice as opposed to those who did not. The patients who consumed the highest daily supplement of juice showed a significant increase in blood albumin and decrease in blood fibrinogen levels, which enhance anticoagulant activity.

The fruit, a cross between a grapefruit and a pomelo, also is known as the “pomelit.”

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