“Nitric oxide is one of the most important molecules in the human body and yet may be one of the least commonly understood,” John Halbert, North American CEO of Lifes2Good, Berkeley Life’s parent company, told NutraIngredients-USA.
“Maintaining a healthy level of nitric oxide has a profound effect on the cardiovascular system – helping to control blood pressure, improving oxygen flow throughout the body and reducing the risk of blockages and clots,” he added.
Inspired by research that won Nobel Prize for Physiology and Medicine
According to Halbert, the supplement’s development was inspired by research on nitric oxide conducted by three US scientists—Robert F. Fuchgott, Louis J. Ignarro, and Ferid Murad—that was recognized with a Nobel Prize for Physiology and Medicine in 1998.
The Nobel prize committee awarded them because of their “dogged efforts to prove that nitric oxide, an endogenous gas and also a free radical, could have this kind of crucial biological effect,” according to an article published in the American Heart Association journal Circulation, published the same year the award was given.
“Their research revealed nitric oxide to be a vasodilator, reducing blood pressure and increasing oxygen in the blood flow, and also showed that our bodies may not produce as much NO as needed to maintain strong arteries,” Halbert said.
He added that studies on the efficacy of Berkeley Life Heart Health supplements itself are currently underway, though existing supporting research is promising: “There is a significant existing body of research on the heart health benefits of nitric oxide as well as the key ingredients in the Berkeley Life product, including beetroot,” he said.
Test strips to measure nitric oxide levels
The supplement contains Berkeley Life’s signature NOx:BP Complex, designed to have the same bio-actives as those found in nitrate rich plants, including leafy green vegetables. The formula also includes beet root extract to aid nitrate level and pomegranate extract for its antioxidant properties.
Sold for a suggested retail price of $39.99 for 60 tablets (a 30-day supply), each packet comes with two nitric oxide saliva test strips, designed to identify the nitric oxide level of an individual upon contact with saliva.
Cardiologist Dr. James Rippe, who endorsed the supplement in a press release, said that “A convenient daily supplement with proven ingredients, like those in Berkeley Life Heart Health, can be a good solution for those who struggle to make lifestyle changes.”
He also added that the test strips can support behaviour change. “Until now, patients have had no visibility to this critical aspect of their cardiovascular health,” he said. “A test strip can be a first step in helping people make proactive choices to combat the number one threat to their overall well-being – heart disease.”
Targeting Baby Boomers and the 40+ crowd
According to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), one in every four deaths is caused by heart disease—making it a leading cause of death for both men and women.
Furthermore, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) data reveals that the risk of coronary heart disease increases at age 45 for men and 55 for women—an age group that Berkeley Life is targeting with its new supplements.
“The body’s natural production of nitric oxide slows as we age, so people 40+ may be particularly interested,” Halbert argued. “Seven in 10 adults in the United States currently use medication to treat high blood pressure, and Berkeley Life is a plant-based option that may help maintain healthy blood pressure levels.”
“Most people aren’t aware how important nitric oxide is to our cardiovascular health and we don’t regularly keep the proper diet or level of physical activity necessary to maintain a good level of nitric oxide, particularly as we age,” said James Murphy, founder of Lifes2Good. “Berkeley Life supplements are a convenient solution to boost the body’s production of this critical molecule.”