You may have heard that high cholesterol is a major contributor to heart disease. That's what Big Pharma - and even the FDA and other government agencies - want you to believe. But my big concern is what your body does with cholesterol. I've always told you that this is a much bigger risk factor than your total cholesterol level.

Cholesterol is a natural and healthy product of your liver. It doesn't become dangerous until it oxidizes. When that happens, cholesterol can seriously damage your arteries. Nutrients like vitamin E prevent oxidation. But so can berries. And a recent study shows you just how well one particular berry protects your cholesterol from oxidation.

In this study, researchers gave 30 men just four ounces of cranberry juice cocktail for four weeks. Then they doubled the amount to eight ounces for another four weeks. And then they doubled it one more time to 16 ounces daily for another four weeks.

After the final four weeks, the scientists measured the participants for oxidized LDL cholesterol. They also measured levels of molecules that cause cells to become stickier (vascular cell adhesion molecule-1). Sticky cells are a big heart-disease risk factor.

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The researchers found that both factors decreased significantly!

Your doctor stresses drug therapy to lower LDL cholesterol. LDL - considered the "bad" cholesterol - is very susceptible to oxidation. But this study proves that drug therapy is completely unnecessary. It doesn't stop oxidation, it's dangerous, and natural substances work even better.

Berries are loaded with phytochemicals (bioflavonoids) that protect your vascular system. Blueberries, for instance, protect your eyes. And we know cranberries have tremendous health benefits. Now we know they also protect your arteries.

Cranberry juice is excellent for your health. Feel free to drink four ounces with your breakfast. My biggest concern is the sugar in most cranberry juice products, and the chemicals used in berry farming. Both of these could be far worse for you than the berries are good. So make sure you buy organic cranberry juice with no sugar added. It probably will be tart, but the health benefits are fantastic.

Ref: Br J Nutr, 2007.
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