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Clinical Research: Barley Grass Supports Cardiovascular Function

Bob Terry, PhD

OXNARD, CA, May 9, 2003 - People who regularly consume powdered organic barley grass juice supplements could be providing a boost to their cardiovascular system, according to research recently published in the peer-reviewed scientific journal, Diabetes and Metabolism (2002, Vol. 28, 107-114).

Ya-Mei Yu and Chingmin E. Tsai from Fu Jen University in Taipei together with fellow Taiwanese researchers from China Medical College in Taichung found in a clinical study that supplementation with barley grass helped reduce the levels of cholesterol and oxygen free-radicals in the blood of type 2 diabetics.

In the study, 36 randomly selected type 2 diabetics were randomly assigned to receive daily supplements of barley grass, a combination of vitamin C and E or a combination of barley grass and vitamins C and E for four weeks. Past research has indicated that antioxidants vitamin C and E when taken together may promote cardiovascular function.

The researchers found that supplementation with barley grass reduced the levels of total cholesterol, LDL-cholesterol, and oxygen free-radicals, in addition to protecting LDL-vitamin E content and inhibiting LDL oxidation. The authors noted that barley grass "acts as a free radical scavenger." Particularly noteworthy are the data showing barley grass, when taken with vitamins C and E, more effectively lowers the level of free radicals than either barley grass or the vitamins when taken alone. The researchers concluded that supplementation with barley grass in combination with antioxidative vitamins may have a protective effect and promote healthy cardiovascular function.

The results of ongoing clinical studies appear to support and extend the findings that barley grass supplementation may lower blood levels of cholesterol and free radicals.

"For individuals concerned about their cardiovascular health, this study indicates that they would be well advised to focus on a diet with lots of green foods, particularly organic barley grass." said Dr. Richard M. Gold, Ph.D., L.Ac., author and Professor at Pacific College of Oriental Medicine.

YH Products Co. of Oxnard, California provided the barley grass supplements for this study. YH Products Co. manufactures Green Magma (distributed by Green Foods Corporation). Green Magma is made with powdered organic barley grass juice, containing vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, amino acids, proteins, active enzymes and chlorophyll.


Clinical Research: Green Magma Helps Lower LDL Oxidation and Free Radical Activity in the Blood, and Supports Normal Levels of Cholesterol

Bob Terry, PhD

(August 16, 2005) In the last twenty-five years researchers have published a number of in vitro and in vivo laboratory studies demonstrating that Green Magma and its constituents exhibit potent antioxidant activity, cleansing actions, and cardiovascular support properties. In addition, a series of clinical studies have been published showing evidence that Green Magma provides support for the cardiovascular system in both healthy individuals in those with blood sugar or blood lipid concerns.

Clinical studies performed since 2002 by Dr. Ching-Min Tsai from the Graduate Institute of Nutrition and Food Science at Fu Jen University and the Department of Bioscience Technology at Chung Yuan University (both in Taipei, Taiwan) and colleagues have demonstrated that dietary changes including daily supplementation with Green Magma may provide several important benefits for cardiovascular function.

Normal blood flow through our bodies is essential for optimal health. While dietary, lifestyle, and genetic factors all play a role in cardiovascular function, dietary changes may offer a relatively convenient means of promoting cardiovascular function, normal blood flow, and enhanced quality of life.

I. Support for Normal Cholesterol Levels and Inhibition of LDL Oxidation with a Diet Rich in Poly- or Mono-unsaturated Fatty Acids and Barley Grass Juice Powder.

Liu WC, Tsai CE. Young Barley Leaf Prevents LDL Oxidation in Humans. Food Science and Agricultural Chemistry [published by The Chinese Institute of Food Science and Technology] Vol. 4 (3): 110-116 (2002).

SUMMARY: The results show that daily consumption of a diet rich in poly-unsaturated fatty acids (PUFA) from soybean oil reduces serum total cholesterol, LDL-C and HDL-C, but not the level of LDL oxidation. Adding barley grass juice powder to the soybean oil-enriched diet enhances its cholesterol-lowering effect and lowers LDL oxidation. While mono-unsaturated fatty acids (MUFA) from olive oil had no effect on total serum cholesterol, LDL-C or HDL-C, MUFA lowered the oxidation of LDL and this effect was enhanced by the addition of barley grass juice powder. Therefore, together with a diet rich in poly- or mono-unsaturated fatty acids, 15 g of barley grass juice powder per day as part of the diet may help support cardiovascular activity by promoting normal cholesterol levels and reducing the oxidation of LDL.

II. LDL Cholesterol and LDL Oxidation Reduced in Type 2 Diabetic Patients Receiving an Olive Oil-enriched Diet Supplemented with Barley Grass Juice.

Yu YM and Tsai CE. LDL cholesterol and oxidation are significantly reduced in type 2 diabetic patients receiving a barley leaf essence supplemented olive oil diet. Food Science and Agricultural Chemistry [published by The Chinese Institute of Food Science and Technology] Vol. 5 (1): 1-6 (2003).

SUMMARY: An intake of olive oil together with a dietary supplement of young barley grass juice may be useful as part of the nutritional management of patients with type 2 diabetes since it increases the monounsaturated fatty acid composition of LDL, decreases whole blood free radical activities, increases the vitamin E content of LDL, and reduces the susceptibility of LDL to oxidation.

III. Barley Grass Juice Powder, Alone or in Combination with Vitamins C and E, Lowers Free Radical Activity and Inhibits LDL Oxidation in Type 2 Diabetes.

Yu YM, Chang WC, Chang CT, Hsieh CL, and Tsai CE. Effects of barley leaf extract and antioxidative vitamins on LDL oxidation and free radical scavenging activities in type 2 diabetes. Diabetes Metab Vol. 28 (2): 107-114 (2002).

SUMMARY: The results indicate that supplementation with barley grass juice may help to lower cholesterol, scavenge oxygen free radicals, spare the LDL-vitamin E content, and inhibit LDL oxidation. Furthermore, there appears to be a synergistic inhibition of small, dense-LDL oxidation with the combination of barley grass juice and vitamins C and E, an effect that may promote good vascular function.

IV. Barley Grass Juice or Adlay Reduces Plasma Lipids and LDL Oxidation in Hyperlipidemic Smokers and Non-Smokers.

Yu YM, Chang WC, Liu CS and Tsai CM. Effects of young barley leaf extract and adlay on plasma lipids and LDL oxidation in hyperlipidemic smokers. Biol. Pharm. Bull. Vol. 27 (6): 802-805 (2004).

SUMMARY: Supplementation with either BL or adlay can decrease total and LDL cholesterol as well as susceptibility of LDL-C to oxidation in hyperlipidemic smokers and non-smokers. Barley leaf extract (barley grass juice) had a stronger antioxidative effect than adlay and the effects of either BL or adlay are less pronounced in smokers

Note: The barley grass juice powder (referred to as “barley leaf essence”, “barley leaf extract”, or “barley leaf”) used in all four of the studies described was provided by YH Products, the manufacturing division of Green Foods Corporation, located in Oxnard, California.


Barley Grass Neutralizes Pesticides In Vitro

Bob Terry, PhD

Health conscious consumers today are looking for more than wholesome, nutritious food to maintain good health, they also want to avoid the ever-increasing levels of pesticides and other chemicals in our environment. While periodic use of internal cleansing programs may help to eliminate pesticide residues, the best solution is to gently cleanse our bodies every day through our diet. Therefore, optimal nutrition requires foods that supply us with all the nutrients necessary for cellular metabolism and that also help us cleanse our bodies daily.

In 1978, Dr. Yoshihide Hagiwara revealed the ability of our barley grass extract Green Magma to degrade an insecticide (malathion), and two chemical food additives (sorbic acid and BHT) [1] when mixed directly with these substances in an aqueous solution. Heating Green Magma caused it to lose its ability to breakdown either malathion or sorbic acid indicating that enzyme activity in Green Magma may be responsible for its actions. However, heat treatment does not affect Green Magma's ability to degrade BHT, which led Dr. Hagiwara to suggest that the BHT molecule may be adsorbed onto proteins in Green Magma rather being metabolized through enzyme activity. The following year, Dr. Hagiwara and colleagues reported that barley grass juice contained numerous enzymes including superoxide dismutase, cytochrome oxidase, peroxidase, catalase, fatty acid oxidase, and transhydrogenase [2] some of which may play a role in neutralizing pesticides and chemical additives in the body.

In the 1990's, Dr. Shibamoto and Dr. Hagiwara isolated, identified, and studied the properties of a potent bioflavonoid antioxidant, named glycosylisovitexin (GIV), in young barley grass [3]. They showed that GIV was particularly effective in preventing the free radical oxidation of fatty acids, fish oils, and lecithin caused by ultraviolet light or by chemically induced oxidative reactions in blood [4]. GIV was also found to be effective in preventing the formation of two oxidation products of alcohol, acetaldehyde and malonaldehyde [5]. These two substances may be responsible for some of the unwanted effects of alcohol consumption.

Subsequent research published by Dr. Shibamoto along with Dr. Hagiwara and colleagues, demonstrated that young barley grass juice effectively degraded a variety of organophosphorus pesticides in vitro including malathion, chlorpyrifos, guthion, diazinon, methidathion, and parathion [6]. Incubation of the individual pesticides with a 3% solution of barley grass juice for several hours resulted in the complete degradation of both malathion and chlorpyrifos along with breakdown of parathion by 75%; diazinon by 54%; guthion by 41%; and methidathion by 23%. They also confirmed Dr. Hagiwara's previous finding that barley grass juice's ability to break down malathion is lost when barley grass is heated to 120O C, most likely due to destruction of enzyme activity by heat. Further research is necessary to understand the manner in which barley grass juice degrades pesticides.

Dr. Shibamoto and colleagues are continuing their research on the possible ways in which organic Green Magma may help us cleanse our bodies in a natural and effective manner.

In summary, research is helping to better understand why Green Magma provides the many benefits that thousands of regular consumers of Green Magma already know about -- increased energy levels, improved digestion, better looking hair, skin and nails – all indications of good nutrition.


References:
  1. Hagiwara, Y. Study on green juice powder of young barley (Hordeum vulgare L) leaves II: Effect on several food additives, agricultural chemicals, and a carcinogen. Presented at the 98th National Meeting of the Japanese Society of Pharmaceutical Science (1978).
  2. Hagiwara, Y., Sayuki, S., Miyauchi, T., Otake,H., Abe, S., Kuramoto, M., and Takada, K. Study on green barley extract. Presented at the 99th National Meeting of the Japanese Society of Pharmaceutical Science, Sapporo (1979).
  3. Osawa, T., Katsuzaki, H., Hagiwara, Y., and Shibamoto, T. A novel antioxidant isolated from young green barley leaves. 1992, J. of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, Vol. 40 (7): 1135-1138.
  4. Miyake, T. and Shibamoto, T. Inhibition of Malonaldehyde and acetaldehyde formation from blood plasma oxidation by naturally occurring antioxidants. 1998, J. of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, Vol. 46 (9): 1135-1138.
  5. Nakajima, S., Hagiwara, Y., Hagiwara, H., and Shibamoto, T. Effect of the Antioxidant 2"-O-Glycosylisovitexin from young green barley leaves on acetaldehyde formation in beer stored at 50 degree C for 90 days. 1998, Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, Vol. 46 (4): 1529-1531.
  6. Durham, J., Ogata, J., Nakajima, S., Hagiwara, Y., and Shibamoto, T. Degradation of organophosphorus pesticides in aqueous extracts of young green barley leaves (Hordeum vulgare L). 1999, J. of the Science of Food and Agriculture, Vol. 79: 1311-1314.