SpectraCell Blog

Shedding Some Light on Cholesterol

Posted by SpectraCell Laboratories, Inc. on Thu, Jan 19, 2017 @ 12:54 PM

improve-heart-health-naturally_cropped.jpgDid you know that everything you’ve learned about cholesterol and its association with heart attacks is only partly correct? Consider this startling statistic: 50% of people who have suffered a heart attack, have "normal" cholesterol. Another way of saying this is that among heart attack victims, standard cholesterol testing would have detected “normal” ranges in half of this population had it been performed on the day of their event. This begs the question: why do so many practitioners use a diagnostic test that only identifies 50% of those at risk? The reason is simple: it is the test with which they are familiar and has been in use for decades. But did you know that HDL and LDL (the “good” and “bad” cholesterol), are only some of the pieces of the puzzle? Knowing your HDL (good) and LDL (bad) cholesterol is only the beginning; SpectraCell’s LPP (Lipoprotein Particle Profile) test identifies these and other components, shedding light on a spectrum of factors that provide detailed information about one’s cardiovascular health.

Here is one way to look at heart disease: when blood vessels are injured or inflamed, lipoproteins containing cholesterol and other lipids penetrate the arterial lining and build plaque. This is akin to a scab on the inside of a blood vessel, causing a reduction in blood flow. Since plaque buildup is the physiological response to injured and inflamed vessels, reducing these factors is critical.

This is where cholesterol comes in. Plaque is actually a response to vascular injury - not the cause of it. Cholesterol, a component of plaque, is rarely the culprit, but lipoproteins are. Lipoproteins are particles that penetrate the arterial lining and build plaque as a result of the injury. These tiny particles carry cholesterol (the vascular scapegoat) through the bloodstream, and cause damage (cholesterol is really just one component of lipoproteins). In other words, lipoproteins are often the real villain (some are extraordinarily dangerous, others are completely benign).

Lipoproteins are classified by size. In general, the bigger, the better, and here’s why: larger, fluffier low density lipoprotein (LDL) particles cannot penetrate the arterial lining as easily as smaller LDL particles can. Less injury to the artery over time results in less plaque formation along with clearer, more pliable blood vessels (this is a good thing). Remnant lipoproteins (RLPs) are cited as having a very strong relationship with heart disease. Statins, which are often prescribed to lower LDLs, will do little to lower RLPs – these are best lowered by high-dose omega-3 fatty acids. Understanding one’s own lipoprotein profile (number and type of LDLs) floating in the bloodstream, is key to promoting improved vascular health outcomes through lifestyle change.

Without any objective information regarding one’s lipoprotein profile, many people are simply shooting in the dark in terms of treatment for these types of cardiovascular issues. The message is clear: simply measuring cholesterol without taking into account lipoprotein particle numbers and density is certainly not enough, as suggested by the 50% statistic cited above. Talk to your health care provider about pursuing a lipoprotein profile test to get a comprehensive assessment of your cardiac risk factors. We saved the best part for last: SpectraCell's LPP test costs about the same as an outdated cholesterol test, and is often covered by insurance!

 


 

Topics: Cholesterol, Heart Disease, Lipoproteins, Heart Attack, Lipoprotein Particles, LDL and HDL, Standard Cholesterol Testing

Do the Prescriptions YOU take deplete your nutritional status?

Posted by SpectraCell Laboratories, Inc. on Wed, Jul 24, 2013 @ 03:34 PM

When a person takes prescription drugs or over the counter medication chances are that they can prescription depletions Page 1 resized 600 be affecting their nutrient levels. Below are some of the possible deficiencies that are correlated with each corresponding drug.

Antacids/Ulcer medications

  • vitamin B12 - Anemia, depression, tiredness, weakness, increased cardiovascular risk

  • Folic Acid - Birth defects, cervical dysplasia, anemia, heart disease, cancer risk

  • vitamin D - osteoporosis, muscle weakness, hearing loss

  • Calcium - Osteoporosis, heart and blood pressure irregularities, tooth decay

  • Iron - Anemia, weakness, fatigue, hair loss, brittle nails

  • Zinc - weak immunity, wound healing, sense of smell/taste, sexual dysfunction


Antibiotics

  • B vitamins, Vitamin K - short term depletion affects are minimal, but failure to re-inoculate the GI tract with beneficial bacteria (probiotics) often results in dysbiosis which causes gas, bloating, decreases digestion & absorption of nutrients, and also may lead to a variety of other health problems.

  • Calcium - osteoporosis, heart & blood pressure irregularities, tooth decay

  • magnesium - cardiovascular problems, asthma, osteoporosis, cramps, PMS

  • Iron - slow wound healing, fatigue, anemia

  • vitamin B6 - depression, sleep disturbance, increased cardiovascular disease risk

  • zinc - weak immunity, wound healing, sense of smell/taste, sexual dysfunction


Cholesterol drugs

  • Coenzyme Q10 - Various cardiovascular problems, weak immune system, low energy


Female Hormones

  • Vitamin B6 - depression, sleep disturbance, increased cardiovascular disease risk

  • Folic acid - birth defects, cervical dysplasia, anemia, cardiovascular disease

  • vitamin B1 - depression, irritability, memory loss, muscle weakness, edema

  • vitamin B2 - problems with skin, eyes, mucous membranes and nerves

  • vitamin B6 - depression, sleep disturbances, increased cardiovascular disease risk

  • vitamin B12 - anemia, depression, tiredness, weakness, increased cardiovascular risk

  • vitamin C - lowered immune system, easy bruising, poor wound healing

  • magnesium - cardiovascular problems, asthma, osteoporosis, cramps, PMS

  • selenium - lower immunity, reduced antioxidant protection'

  • zinc - weak immunity, wound healing, sense of smell/taste, sexual dysfunction


Anti-Inflammatories

  • calcium - osteoporosis, heart and blood pressure irregularities, tooth decay

  • vitamin D - osteoporosis, muscle weakness, hearing loss

  • magnesium - cardiovascular problems, asthma, osteoporosis, cramps, PMS

  • zinc - weak immunity, wound healing, sense of smell/taste, sexual dysfunction

  • vitamin C - lowered immunity, easy bruising, poor wound healing

  • vitamin B6 - depression, sleep disturbances,increased cardiovascular disease risk

  • vitamin B12 - anemia, depressioon, tiredness, weakness, increased cardiovascular risk

  • Folic Acid - birth defects, cervical dysplasia, anemia, cardiovascular disease

  • Selenium - lower immunity, reduced antioxidant protection

  • chromium - elevated blood sugar, cholesterol & triglycerides, diabetes risk

  • vitamin B5 - fatigue, listlessness, and possible problems with skin, liver and nerves

For a complete list of drugs and their correlating deficiencies click here

If you would like to check your nutrient levels click here

Topics: SpectraCell, micronutrients, Coenzyme Q10, Antidepressants, Cancer, autoimmune diseases, zinc, Vitamin D, Carnitine, Magnesium, Vitamin C, Vitamin E, Vitamin B6, B Vitamins, Folic Acid, Antioxidants, Fibromyalgia, Cholesterol, Cardiovascular Health, Heart Disease, Vitamin K, Vitamin B12, Chronic Disease, diabetes, immune system, E-zinc, Vitamins, Calcium, Fertility, PMS, deficiencies, chronic fatigue and nutrition, health, Inflammatory Bowel Disease, Depression, Diet, Digestion, Stress, Vitamin B1, micronutrient test, Inflammation, Vitamin B5, High Blood Pressure, Vitamin B2, Iron, Nutritional Deficiency, Cancer Prevention, Heart Health, Gastrointestinal Tract, Hypothyroidism, Allergies, Wound Healing, Vitamin B3, Antihistamines, cardiovascular disease, Nutrient, hypertension, Women's Health

Can Nutrition Cure Depression?

Posted by SpectraCell Laboratories, Inc. on Fri, Dec 21, 2012 @ 11:09 AM

Presented by: Mary Ann Block, D.O.Depression, sad, nutrition

Topics of Discussion:

    • How Depression is Often a Symptom of Underlying Medical Problems
    • Nutrients Depleted by Antidepressants
    • Role of Zinc in the Development and Treatment of Mood Disorders
    • Case Study Review

 

Download our archived webinar presentation, "Can Nutrition Cure Depression?"

 

Also, check our webinar library for a complete list of previous webinars on a wide range of topics.

 

Topics: micronutrient testing, Antidepressants, autoimmune diseases, zinc, Vitamin D, Carnitine, Magnesium, Vitamin B6, B Vitamins, Antioxidants, Fatigue, Cholesterol, diagnostic tools, wellness, Vitamin B12, Multivitamins, Chronic Disease, E-zinc, deficiencies, chronic fatigue and nutrition, inositol, health, Case Study, website, Depression, Diet, Digestion, micronutrient test, Vitamin B2, Vitamin B3, Energy, Bipolar, webinar, Blood Pressure, Amino Acid, caffeine, Women's Health

UPDATE: 2011 Lipoprotein Particle Profile™ (LPP™) Report Enhancements

Posted by SpectraCell Laboratories, Inc. on Thu, Mar 31, 2011 @ 01:32 PM

Cardiovascular healthWe are excited to introduce our new report for the Lipoprotein Particle Profile™. We believe the changes that have been made will make the report easier to read and will facilitate your assessment of risk and the selection of patient specific treatment programs.

Addition of the Traditional Lipid Panel (Cholesterol, Triglycerides, HDL, LDL)

Many physicians continue to utilize the traditional cholesterol or lipid panel for guidance in the selection of an appropriate treatment strategy. Although we believe that the treatment is better determined by the application of the results from HDL and LDL subgroups and their particle numbers, the traditional lipid panel continues to be used for risk assessment and we are therefore including it in our report.

Elimination of CEQ

Many physicians and their patients found the practice of reporting lipoprotein test results in terms of cholesterol equivalents confusing. Therefore, we are eliminating this concept from our report.

Addition of ApoB, non-HDL cholesterol and non-HDL particle numbers

A value for non-HDL cholesterol has been included since it is likely to be the new NCEP ATP IV target of therapy when the guidelines are released later this year. Additionally we have added Apolipoprotein B and non-HDL particle numbers which were the focus of the Consensus Statement of the American College of Cardiology and the American Diabetes Association for better risk assessment. Individual variability in the triglyceride and cholesterol composition of the lipoprotein subgroups can make particle numbers more meaningful in risk assessment.

LPP Sample Test ReportOther report changes include:

• Lp(a) results have been moved to the Risk Modification section.

• The reporting units for hs-CRP have been changed from mg/dL to mg/L which changes the reference range to 0.00 – 3.00 mg/L.

• The LDL mean size/phenotype result has been deleted as this result can often be misleading as a result of variances in the total LDL result.

• The Apo B reference range has been changed to 40 – 100 mg/dL.

• The Apo A1 reference range has been changed to 115 – 224 mg/dL. This test is not a part of the LPP™ Basic or Plus panels, it must be ordered separately.

Are you using a cardiovascular risk assessment in your practice?

Topics: lipoprotein particle profile, LPP, Cholesterol, Cardiovascular Health, Heart Disease, Lp(a), Triglycerides, LDL and HDL, Apo A, Apo B

Webinar: Using Advanced Diagnostic Tools for Cardiovascular Health

Posted by SpectraCell Laboratories, Inc. on Wed, Feb 16, 2011 @ 03:53 PM

Cardiovascular WebinarRegister for a seat to February 17's webinar on "Using Advanced Diagnostic Tools for Cardiovascular Health"

Topics Discussed:

- Using advanced lipid testing for better cardiovascular risk assessment
- How the HS-Omega-3 Index® and ApoE Genotyping can better target your treatment strategies
- How to easily implement SpectraCell's LPP™ into your practice
- A busy physician’s guide to rapid report interpretation
- Case study review

 

If this event has passed, please view our WEBINAR LIBRARY for the recorded version of this webinar and many others.

Topics: SpectraCell, lipoprotein particle profile, ApoE Genotyping, HS-Omega-3 Index, LPP, Cholesterol, Omega 3 Fatty Acid, Cardiovascular Health

SpectraCell Receives Patent on its LPP™ Cardiovascular Test

Posted by SpectraCell Laboratories, Inc. on Fri, Jan 28, 2011 @ 01:59 PM

Lipoprotein Particle Profile TestingHouston, TX- January 28, 2011. SpectraCell Laboratories has recently been awarded a patent on their Lipoprotein Particle Profile™ (LPP™) test which is used to measure cardiovascular risk. The LPP™ has been commercially available since 2006, and is a type of advanced cholesterol test that measures lipoprotein subgroups. The LPP™ gives more accurate estimation of cardiovascular risk compared to a routine cholesterol test.

The patent was awarded for use of a “Method for Analyzing Blood for Lipoprotein Components.” Specifically, the LPP™ test utilizes a patented analytical ultracentrifugation method for separating lipoprotein subclasses. This separation method for LPP™ originated at Texas A & M University and was further developed by Dr. Jan Troup, the inventor of LPP™ technology, who is also a member of SpectraCell's scientific staff.

“The LPP™ generally doesn’t cost the patient any more than a standard cholesterol test, but it gives the doctor much more relevant and accurate information.” states Dr. Jan Troup, PhD, and Director of Lipid Science for SpectraCell Laboratories. “Different lipoproteins respond differently to therapy, whether it is statins, fish oils or niacin, for example. The LPP™ enables the doctor to treat appropriately.”

In recent years, the medical community has discovered that, beyond “standard” cholesterol tests, an independent factor for heart disease can be determined by measuring the density and number of lipoprotein particles, to which cholesterol is attached. Patients with a normal cholesterol value, but abnormal particle sizes or numbers, can be at serious risk for cardiovascular disease.

In fact, The National Cholesterol Education Program (NCEP) acknowledges that 50% of people that have heart attacks have “normal” cholesterol – that is, cholesterol below 200 mg/dL. NCEP recognizes four risk factors that are not measured with routine cholesterol testing but are all measured by the LPP™ test:

1. RLP – (remnant lipoprotein) more easily converted into arterial plaque than other lipoproteins

2. Lp(a) – a dangerous lipoprotein that contributes to clot formation

3. HDL2b – a type of HDL that indicates how well cholesterol is being cleared from your system

4. Small, dense LDL – easily penetrates vascular wall, causing damage and plaque

The main reason to know NCEP risk factors are that specific lipoproteins respond to specific therapies very differently. The LPP™ is part of the trend toward more individualized medicine. The LPP™ test, which is done on a fasting blood sample, is usually covered by insurance. Results typically take 3-5 days.

For more information, go to www.spectracell.com

OR

contact Dr. Jan Troup, PhD – Director of Lipid Science  at 800-227-5227

Dr. Jan Troup, Ph.D.

Topics: SpectraCell, lipoprotein particle profile, LPP, Cholesterol, Cardiovascular Health, diagnostic tools, Heart Disease, Lp(a), Lipoprotein Particles, NCEP, RLP, LDL and HDL, Patent, Dr. Jan Troup

Clearing up the Cholesterol Confusion – So Your Patient Can Understand It

Posted by Nichole Herms on Mon, Nov 29, 2010 @ 03:09 PM

Heart HealthThere has been a lot of talk about cholesterol recently in the news.  This is largely due to one startling statistic to which most people are unaware: 50% of people who have heart attacks have "normal" cholesterol.  What??? Stated differently, that means that half of all heart attack victims may have had a routine cholesterol test done on the very day they had the heart attack and felt fine because their cholesterol (by routine testing standards) was "normal."  So, why do so many practitioners use a diagnostic test that is only 50% accurate?
 
The reason is simple:  that's what doctors have been using for years, decades really.  But now there is more accurate testing available.  Basically, it's an evolution of the former, out-dated cholesterol testing.  Knowing your HDL and LDL - the "good" and "bad" cholesterol is only the beginning.  SpectraCell’s LPP (Lipoprotein Particle Profile) test goes much, much further.
 
Here is the basic scenario of heart disease:  When our blood vessels are "scratched," or injured, plaque builds up in our arteries to repair the injury, sort of like a scab on the inside of  the blood vessel, causing reduced blood flow. Since plaque buildup is our bodies' response to injury of the blood vessels, reducing the injury to our arteries is key.  
 
Human HeartThat's where cholesterol comes in.  Actually, cholesterol is good.  Everyone needs it.  In fact, it protects us in many ways.  Cholesterol is actually a response to vascular injury - not the cause of it.  Cholesterol is really not the culprit.  Lipoproteins are.  Lipoproteins are what "scratch" or "burrow" into our arteries causing injury.  They are actually tiny balls in our blood that carry the cholesterol, our vascular scapegoat.  Lipoproteins are what do the damage, not the cholesterol inside them.  In fact, a lipoprotein can be almost empty of cholesterol and it can still wreak havoc on our arteries, depending on its size and characteristics.  Cholesterol is really just along for the ride.  Lipoproteins, at least the dangerous ones, are the real villain.
 
There are different sizes of lipoproteins.  In general, bigger is better.  Here's why: Larger, fluffier LDL particles cannot lodge into your arteries (which is an injury to the artery) as easily as the smaller LDL particles can.  Less injury to the artery means less plaque formation and clearer, more pliable blood vessels - a good thing.  So it is imperative to understand what kind of LDL (low density lipoproteins) you have floating around in your blood.  There are some that are extraordinarily dangerous and some that are completely benign.
 
MedicationsFor example, RLP (also called remnant lipoprotein) has been cited by the government as a very high risk factor for heart disease.  But statins, which lower LDL, will do nothing to help your RLP.  Omega 3 fatty acids effectively lower RLP.  So, if you don't know what kind of lipoproteins you have, you're shooting in the dark in terms of what treatments you should take.  
 
Here's another example:  Lp(a) - so dangerous that it is sometimes called the widowmaker - is lowered by the simple vitamin B3 (also called niacin).  Again, you may be taking statins or fish oil pills, but they won't affect Lp(a).  You can see why measuring just plain old LDL is certainly not enough.  That is why 50% of the people who have fatal heart attacks have "normal" cholesterol - they are not getting the right cholesterol/ lipoprotein test done.
 
Here's the best part:  SpectraCell's LPP test costs about the same as an outdated cholesterol test and it is also usually covered by insurance.  Why wouldn't you want an LPP done?

Topics: SpectraCell, lipoprotein particle profile, LPP, Cholesterol, Heart Disease, Lipoproteins, Heart Attack, LDL and HDL