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Lecithin and Arterial Plaque Removal


Eggs Are A Clue 

   The word lecithin is taken from the Greek Lekithos, which means "egg yolk".  A fitting name for this essential nutrient, for the egg is considered a symbol of life, strength and fertility.  I am always amazed by warnings by some people against eating eggs because they have a lot of cholesterol.   For years, people have stayed away from eating eggs because of their “high” cholesterol content.  

   To me, it is a classical example of too little knowledge, not enough wisdom speaking out.  Eggs are one of nature’s perfect foods in nutrient richness, attempted to be soiled by ignorance!  Strong words – but the example also displays some of the wonderful qualities of lecithin. 

   A report out of Kansas State University explains that the lecithin in eggs has been found to be effective in directing the proper use of cholesterol in the body.  After all, both cholesterol and lecithin are essential for our body.  (Our brain is approximately 30% Lecithin.  The insulating myelin sheaths that protect the brain, spine and thousands of miles of nerves in your body are almost two-thirds lecithin.) 

  Nature, in its efficient manner, has provided high levels of lecithin in eggs to allow the cholesterol to be used properly.  The Linus Pauling Institute also shares that without adequate amounts of phosphatidylcholine (lecithin), the levels of cholesterol and fat build up within the arteries and liver.  So, let’s see how all this works out and why it is important to artery plaque removal and cholesterol control. 

What Does Lecithin Do? 

   Lecithin is a key nutrient because of its particular relationship to cholesterol.  Lecithin is a lipid fat and a well-known emulsifier that can cause fats and water to mix together, something they normally will not do.  Even more impressive, lecithin will cause fats to emulsify to water!  This is very important because it helps arterial cholesterol fats dissolve in our blood (made of water) so they can be removed from the body.  

   This is a big plus for our purposes because lecithin can then act as an emulsifying agent for plaque and cholesterol.  Lecithin can help cholesterol and plaque fat particles to loosen up and be dispersed into the blood.  Then the lecithin helps facilitate the flow of fats and cholesterol through the blood and carry them to the liver and gallbladder to be removed from the body.  Thus, it helps to both protect organs and arteries from fatty buildup, as well as help remove them from our body. 

   When a fat is emulsified, it is also less likely to deposit on an artery wall and more likely to move to a place where it can be metabolized.  Lecithin breaks up cholesterol like this so it doesn’t cause atherosclerosis.  As long as the amount of lecithin in the blood is sufficient, atherosclerosis is less likely to occur. 

Melting Point

   Cholesterol also has a much higher melting point than your body temperature.  Basically, this means that there is a wad of waxy cholesterol stuck to your arteries that will be hard to remove unless it is liquefied.  The melting point of cholesterol, where it would deposit on artery walls, is 300 degrees F.  When lecithin and linoleic acid is present (lecithin contains linoleic acid), the melting point of cholesterol falls to below body temperature. 

   Canadian research, confirmed by Boston University, found that cholesterol becomes soluble in your body only when enough lecithin is present!  Lecithin increases the liquidity of cholesterol for easier removal.  (That is also why the lecithin fat portion of the good HDLs has almost twice as much lecithin as LDLs.)  In addition, cholesterol is dissolved and kept in solution as a flowing liquid when there are adequate amounts of essential fatty acids.  

   This is very helpful in our process of loosening plaque up so we can remove it.  In addition, even in the presence of an arterial injury, cholesterol will have a more difficult time depositing more plaque because the essential fatty acids have made the blood more fluid. 

Additional Benefits: 

   As another benefit, would it surprise us if we found out that that most common source of choline is lecithin?  Choline is important in the process of keeping homocysteines in check – another important defense against arterial problems.  

   Indeed, lecithin can be used to combat cholesterol and plaque.  It forms part of an enzyme called lecithin-cholesterol-acyl transferase that assists in the breakdown of cholesterol into its by-products.  In simple terms, this means that lecithin lowers cholesterol. 

   We know that cholesterol is actually needed by the body.  We know that there are two types: HDL and LDL, or High-density Lipoprotein and Low-Density Lipoprotein.  So then, how is it a good thing when lecithin lowers the cholesterol within the blood? 

   Quite simply, lecithin targets the LDL cholesterol – the cholesterol that has the potential to turn "bad" when damaged by free radicals and to adhere to the lining of the artery wall.  Together with HLD (that binds with LDL and returns it to the liver), lecithin helps eliminate the excess LDL in the blood. 

   We welcome it to our Artery and Plaque Products! 


Azoulay M, Henry I, Tata F, et al.(1987). "The structural gene for lecithin:cholesterol acyl transferase (LCAT) maps to 16q22.". Ann. Hum. Genet.51 (Pt 2): 129–36. 

Buchman AL, et al. Lecithin increases plasma free choline and decreases hepatic steatosis in long-term total parenteral nutrition patients. Gastroenterology 1992;102(4 Pt 1):1363-70. 

Dobiásová M, Frohlich J (1999). "Advances in understanding of the role of lecithin cholesterol acyltransferase (LCAT) in cholesterol transport.". Clin Chim Acta286 (1-2): 257–71.

de Vries R, Borggreve SE, Dullaart RP (2004). "Role of lipases, lecithin:cholesterol acyltransferase and cholesteryl ester transfer protein in abnormal high density lipoprotein metabolism in insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes mellitus.". Clin. Lab.49 (11-12): 601–13. 

FDA. Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition, Office of Premarket Approval, EAFUS: A food additive database website: (Accessed 20 July 1999). 

Holan KR, et al. Effect of oral administration of essential phospholipid, beta-glycerophosphate, and linoleic acid on biliary lipids in patients with cholelithiasis. Digestion 1979;19(4):251-8.Kuivenhoven JA, Pritchard H, Hill J, et al.(1997). "The molecular pathology of lecithin:cholesterol acyltransferase (LCAT) deficiency syndromes.". J. Lipid Res.38 (2): 191–205. 

Oosthuizen W, et al. Lecithin has no effect on serum lipoprotein, plasma fibrinogen and macro molecular protein complex levels in hyperlipidaemic men in a double-blind controlled study. Eur J Clin Nutr 1998;52(6):419-24. 

Simons LA, Hickie JB, Ruys J. Treatment of hypercholesterolaemia with oral lecithin. Aust N Z J Med 1977;7(3):262-6. 

Skretting G, Blomhoff JP, Solheim J, Prydz H (1992). "The genetic defect of the original Norwegian lecithin:cholesterol acyltransferase deficiency families.". FEBS Lett.309 (3): 307–10. 

Taramelli R, Pontoglio M, Candiani G, et al.(1990). "Lecithin cholesterol acyl transferase deficiency: molecular analysis of a mutated allele.". Hum. Genet.85 (2): 195–9. 

Teisberg P, Gjone E, Olaisen B (1975). "Genetics of LCAT (lecithin: cholesterol acyltransferase) deficiency.". Ann. Hum. Genet. 38 (3): 327–31. 

Tuzhilin SA, et al. The treatment of patients with gallstones by lecithin. Am J Gastroenterol 1976; 65(3):231-5. 

Yang CY, Manoogian D, Pao Q, et al.(1987). "Lecithin:cholesterol acyltransferase. Functional regions and a structural model of the enzyme.". J. Biol. Chem.262 (7): 3086–91. 


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