Saffron - Cardiovascular Benefits

Cardiovascular disease is a significant causative factor in mortality. Saffron has important anti-aging benefits including improvement of cardiovascular health. The bioactive constituents of saffron (Crocin and Crocetin) play major roles in cardiovascular fitness.

Significantly, saffron may therapeutically provide cardiovascular benefits in the following manner: (1)

  • Hypertension / Blood Pressure.- Studies indicate that saffron may lower diastolic blood pressure. Much of this involved relaxation of blood vessels. Further saffron may increase nitric oxide levels, which also promote lowering of blood pressure.
  • Inhibit LDL Cholesterol Oxidation -  As a potent antioxidant, saffron has been shown to inhibit LDL oxidation. Oxidized LDL is a component of atherosclerotic plaques.
  • Inhibits Foam Cell Formation - Macrophage foam cell formation is a critical stage in the development of atherosclerosis. Active saffron components crocin and crocetin inhibit foam cells from developing.
  • Inhibits Vascular Cell Adhesion Molecule-1 (VCAM-1) - Another important factor in atherosclerosis development. Again, VCAM-1 is suppressed by crocin and crocetin.


VASCULAR VX™  (Includes Saffron with Crocin and Crocetin)



(1) Roshanravan N, et al. The therapeutic potential of Crocus sativus Linn.: A comprehensive narrative review of clinical trials. Phytother Res. 2022 Jan


Most Powerful Predictor of Heart Disease and Diabetes - Triglycerides and HDL

What is the most precise predictive measure of cardiovascular disease (and diabetes)? Common dogma continues to hold LDL ("bad" cholesterol) as the most accurate measure. However, recent studies research indicate a much stronger correlation between high triglyceride-to-HDL ratios in predicting both cardiovascular disease and the development of diabetes. In a study by the American Heart Association, individuals with the highest triglyceride-HDL ratios were 16x's more likely to suffer a cardiovascular event (i.e. heart attack) as compared to individuals with the lowest triglyceride-HDL ratios. The triglyceride-to-HDL ratio is significantly stronger in predicting cardiovascular events than "high cholesterol" numbers or LDL-to-HDL ratios.(1)

HIGH TRIGLYCERIDES - the dangerous effect of high levels of triglycerides on the cardiovascular system is multi-faceted. Negative effects of high triglyceride levels:

  • Increases Insulin Resistance - Reduces the ability of the body to utilize glucose, increasing diabetes risk and accelerates cardiovascular disease.(2)
  • Lowers Levels of Healthy HDL. HDL helps keep the arteries clean by transporting cholesterol away from the arteries.
  • Increases Levels of Harmful Small Dense LDL. Small sized LDL (Low Density Lipoproteins), also known as VLDL (Very Low Density Lipoprotein, are the most dangerous, and are primarily responsible for arterial plaques, arteriosclerosis and increased risk of heart attacks.
  • Triglycerides (optimal levels 50-100 mg/dl) 
  • Triglycerides above 150 mg/dl can be a sign of diabetes and cardiovascular disease
  • HDL should be higher than 40 mg/dl


  • Targeted Ratio: An ideal ratio < 2:1 (for example - Triglycerides 90 / HDL 45)
  • Disease Ratio Risk: Anything > 3.5:1 increases risk for cardiovascular disease and diabetes.


      Bergamote® (an extract from Bergamot citrus in Italy), is called by some advocates as the ideal natural cardiovascular support supplement. Bergamonte decreases the triglyceride-to-HDL ratio by both decreasing plasma triglycerides and increasing HDL.(3)

      • Cardiovascular Benefits:
        • Significantly improves Triglyceride-HDL ratio by lowering triglycerides while increasing HDL
        • Significantly lowers harmful VLDL levels corresponding to reduced triglycerides
        • Attenuation of Cardiac Fibrosis. Bergamot polyphenols activate AMPK, an enzyme involved in cellular energy homeostasis and longevity.(4) Recent research indicates that increased AMPK activation may also play a role in attenuation of cardiac fibrosis and repair.(5) Cardiac fibrosis decreases the functional ability of the heart muscle and occurs with normal aging and disease.
        • Attenuation (and prevention) of Non-Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease (NAFLD) - Bergamot improves lipid metabolism by the liver and significantly reduces lipid content. The resulting healthier liver metabolism REDUCES the high output of liver triglyercides into the blood stream by the liver - decreasing serum triglyceride levels. NAFL is the most common form of liver disease in western countries.(6)
        • AMPK activation represents an important method of lowering serum triglycerides produced by the liver.(7)

        Bergamonte® is a registered trademark of HP Ingredients


       VASCULAR STRENGTH  (with Bergamonte®)



      (1) Turak O, et al. The Role of Plasma Triglyceride/High-Density Lipoprotein Cholesterol Ratio to Predict New Cardiovascular Events in Essential Hypertensive Patients.Journal of Clinical Hypertension. Jan 2016.

      (2) Bertsch RA, et al. Study of the use of lipid panels as a Marker of Insulin Resistance to Determine Cardiovascular Risk.  Perm J. 2015 Fall.

      (3) HP Ingredients Research. 2016

      (4) Proshkina EN, et al. Basic mechanisms of longevity: A case study of Drosophila pro-longevity genes. Ageing Res. Rev. 2015 Nov;

      (5) Daskaopoulos EP, et al. AMPK in cardiac fibrosis and repair. Actions beyond metabolic regulation. J Mol. Cell Cardiol. 2016 Jan.

      (6) Parafati M, et al. Bergamot polyphenol fraction prevents nonalcoholic fatty liver disease via stimulation of lipophagy in cafeteria diet-induced rat model of metabolic syndrome. J Nutr Biochem. 2015 Sept. 

      (7) Zang M, et al. Polyphenols stimulate AMP-activated protein kinase, lower lipids, and inhibit accelerated atherosclerosis in diabetic LDL receptor-deficient mice. Diabetes. 2006 Aug.