Toronto, ON – June 2005 – Scientific studies indicate that Canadians can reduce their cholesterol levels, and consequently their risk of heart disease, by consuming psyllium fibre. Psyllium is a grain similar to wheat and oats and is one of nature’s most concentrated sources of soluble fibre. Psyllium fibre is available in breakfast cereal and in supplements.
According to a study published in the Journal of Nutrition, consuming cereal with 3 grams or more of psyllium fibre each day as part of a healthy diet can help reduce blood cholesterol levels up to 10 per cent in as little as four weeks in those individuals with elevated cholesterol levels.1 This is a significant reduction, given that every one per cent drop in blood cholesterol can reduce the risk of heart disease by two per cent.2
“The disturbing statistics on heart disease reinforce the need for Canadians to take control of their health by managing their blood cholesterol levels through simple dietary changes,” says Kim Arrey, registered dietitian. “Small dietary changes can be big steps towards heart health. A 1/3 cup serving of Kellogg’s All-Bran Buds cereal each day provides 3.5 grams of psyllium fibre; and by eating a serving each day, Canadians can help reduce their cholesterol levels.”
Statistics show that 48 per cent of men and 43 per cent of women in Canada have elevated blood cholesterol levels, which may be putting them at risk of heart disease and stroke – the leading cause of death and disability in Canada.3 High blood cholesterol is strongly linked to the risk of heart disease.
“Kellogg’s All-Bran Buds cereal is the only cereal in Canada that contains psyllium fibre, making it an excellent part of a nutritious breakfast to boost your fibre intake and help improve your cholesterol levels,” says Johanne Trudeau, Director, Nutrition, Kellogg Canada.
Health Canada identifies the benchmarks for healthy cholesterol levels: the normal total cholesterol level for a healthy adult is less than 5.2 millimoles per litre (mmol/L), while borderline high is 5.2 to 6.2 mmol/L. Regular consumption of cereal with psyllium fibre can reduce blood cholesterol levels by up to 10 per cent and help reduce the risk of heart disease.
Clinical Studies Support Benefits of Psyllium for Cholesterol Health
Several studies have analyzed the effects of psyllium on cholesterol health and form a growing body of research that provides strong support for the cholesterol-lowering properties of psyllium and, consequently, its effectiveness in decreasing the risk of heart disease.
A comprehensive review of published studies (meta-analysis) led by Beth Olsen, PhD, of the Nutritional Sciences Department of Michigan State University, speaks specifically to the benefits of cereal with psyllium fibre – an easy way for Canadians to incorporate psyllium into their diets.4
The objective of the meta-analysis was to determine the cholesterol-lowering effects of psyllium-enriched breakfast cereals in men and women with high blood cholesterol levels, and the findings were positive:
- Consuming psyllium-enriched cereal as part of a low fat diet improves the cholesterol levels of adults over that which can be achieved with a low fat diet alone
- Consuming cereal with 3 grams or more of psyllium fibre can lower blood
cholesterol levels by up to 10 per cent
- The average reduction in LDL cholesterol was 9 per cent
In addition, two subsequent studies produced remarkably similar results in the reduction of cholesterol levels in men and women with the consumption of psyllium, furthering strong support for the cholesterol-lowering properties of psyllium fibre:
- A study led by Lisa Brown, DSc, Harvard School of Public Health resulted in an average reduction of LDL cholesterol of 6.0 per cent.5
- A study led by James W. Anderson, Professor of Medicine and Clinical Nutrition,
M.D., of the University of Kentucky, resulted in an average reduction of LDL cholesterol of 7.0 per cent.6
FDA Health Claims Reflect the Benefits of Psyllium
The strong evidence that psyllium and other viscous fibres may reduce the risk of coronary heart disease is reflected in the recent U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) health claims for viscous fibres. If Canada follows suit, consumers may eventually see claims for dietary psyllium fibre and reduced risk of heart disease on Canadian food packages.
Founded in 1914, Kellogg Canada is the leading manufacturer of ready-to-eat cereal in Canada. The company's brands include Special K*, Vector*, All-Bran*, Kellogg's* Corn Flakes*, Kellogg's* Two Scoops* Raisin Bran, Eggo*, Nutri-Grain*, Rice Krispies*, Pop- Tarts*,Kellogg's Frosted Flakes*, and Froot Loops*. In addition to providing nutritious, highquality foods, Kellogg Canada is committed to educating consumers about nutrition and healthy, active living through responsible packaging, brochures, advertising and symposia developed with the scientific and medical communities. For more information, visit the Kellogg Canada website at www.kelloggs.ca.
* © 2005, Trademark of Kellogg Company used under licence by Kellogg Canada Inc.
1 Olsen BH, Anderson SM, Becker MP, et al. Psyllium-enriched cereals lower blood total cholesterol and LDL cholesterol, but not HDL cholesterol, in hypercholesterolemic adults: results of meta-analysis. J Nutr 1997;127:1973-80.
2 Anderson JW, Blake JE, Turner J, Smith BM. Effects of soy protein on renal function and proteinuria in patients with type 2 diabetes. Am J Clin Nutr 1998 Dec; 68 (6 Suppl):1347S-1353S.
3 Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada
4 Olsen et al.
5 Brown L, Rosner B, Willett WW, Sacks FM. Cholesterol-lowering effects of dietary fiber: a metaanalysis. Am J Clin Nutr 1999;69:30-42.
6 Anderson JW, Allgood LD, Lawrence A, et al. Cholesterol-lowering effects of psyllium intake adjunctive to diet therapy in men and women with hypercholesterolemia: analysis of 8 controlled trials. Am J Clin Nutr 2000;71:472-9.