The C.A.M. Report
Complementary and Alternative Medicine: Fair, Balanced, and to the Point
  • About this web log

    This blog is intended as an objective and dispassionate source of information on the latest CAM research. Since my background is in pharmacy and allopathic medicine, I view all CAM as advancing through the development pipeline to eventually become integrated into mainstream medical practice. Some will succeed while others fail. But all are treated fairly here.

  • About the author

    John Russo, Jr., PharmD, is president of The MedCom Resource, Inc. Previously, he was senior vice president of medical communications at, a complementary and alternative medicine website.

  • Common sense considerations

    The material on this weblog is for informational purposes. It is not medical advice or counsel. Be smart, consult your health professional before using CAM.

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    Calcium, probiotics, and cholesterol metabolism

    Researchers at Friedrich Schiller University, in Jena, Germany, studied the influence of a probiotic supplement alone and combined with a calcium supplement on lowering blood cholesterol levels.

    First, the details.

    • 32 men and women were assigned to drink a probiotic drink containing 1010 CFU/day Lactobacillus paracasei (LPC37) for 4 weeks.
    • Then, 1 group consumed bread enriched with pentacalcium (CaP) hydroxy-triphosphate (1 gram Ca/day).
    • The other group ate bread without CaP.
    • After 2 weeks of no treatment and another 2 weeks of taking placebo, the treatments were switched for another 4 weeks.
    • Neither the patients nor researchers knew the treatment given — double blind.

    And, the results.

    • After taking with LPC37 + CaP, total cholesterol and LDL (bad) cholesterol concentrations decreased significantly compared to LPC37 + placebo.
    • Fecal concentration of L.┬áparacasei and that of all lactobacilli increased significantly after LPC37 + CaP and LPC37 compared to placebo.
    • Secondary bile acids in feces increased significantly after LPC37 + CaP compared to placebo.

    The bottom line?

    A bit confusing, but in the end the authors concluded the following.

    • CaP influences the colonization of LPC37 in the human gut under.
    • The combined supplementation also decreases LDL-cholesterol and the LDL/HDL ratio in healthy men and women with moderately raised cholesterol.
      • This could be also due to the CaP supplementation.

    Probably no direct application at this time, but it might be important in the future.

    11/8/11 19:45 JR

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