Food supplements  
Fiber from Coconut helps fight heart disease  
ABS 7 Power Herbs Good for Your Heart  
Scientific Name: Momordica charantia.Lin.  
Scientific Name: Andrographis paniculata  

Food supplements

A food supplement is, typically, a nutrient added to a foodstuff which would otherwise not contain that nutrient. In general, the term is restricted to those additives which are deemed to be positive for health, growth or well-being.


Several ranges of food supplements are recognised:

  • additives which repair a deficit to "normal" levels
  • additives which appear to enhance a food
  • supplements taken in addition to the normal diet

Many physicians today disagree with the premise that foodstuffs need supplementation, but accept that - for example - added calcium may provide benefit, or that adding folic acid may correct a nutritional deficiency especially in pregnant women.

On a more controversial level, but well founded in scientific basis, is the science of using foods and food supplements to achieve a defined health goal. A common example of this use of food supplements is the extent to which body builders will use amino acid mixtures, vitamins and phytochemicals to enhance natural hormone production, increase muscle and reduce fat.

Moving on from this reasonably accepted usage, there is increasing evidence for the use of food supplements in established medical conditions. This nutritional supplementation using foods as medicine (nutraceuticals) has been effectively used in treating disorders affecting the immune system up to and including cancers. This goes beyond the definition of "food supplement", but should be included for the sake of completeness.

Food supplements

There are several main groups of food supplements which can be considered:

Reference: wikipedia.org

Fiber from Coconut helps fight heart disease

Cardiovascular disease or disease of the heart is a common term to refer to all disorders of the heart and blood vessels. Atherosclerosis or hardening of the arteries is caused by fatty deposits known as plaque sticking to the walls of the arteries which may lead to hypertension, heart attack and stroke. By far, heart attack is the number 1 killer disease worldwide.

Considered as the premier authority on coconut – Dr. Bruce Fife a naturalist provides compelling evidence and information about the role of coconut fiber in heart-health. His book “Coconut Cures” gathers scientific studies on the beneficial characteristic of coconut fiber for people with heart disease.

The benefits of fiber have been well documented through epidemiological studies. In a study on cardiovascular disease, a high-fiber diet was associated with a 21% lower risk of heart disease. Fiber helps reduce cholesterol levels, thus reducing risk of heart disease. Blood pressure is also influenced by dietary fiber. Nutritionist’s suggests that we take between 20-35 grams of fiber a day, but increasing fiber intake by even a small amount can have beneficial effects already. Adding as little as 2 grams of fiber daily to your diet may have long-lasting health benefit. The best source of dietary fiber is coconut meat. The US Department of Agriculture states that the carbohydrate content of coconut has a whooping 71% fiber much greater than oats, wheat and soybean.

Kolestrim capsule a new product by ABS Herbs contains pure coconut meat fiber that aids the body trim down unwanted cholesterol in the body. It is an effective, safe and cost-effective complement to expensive cholesterol-lowering drugs. This food supplement provides botanical and nutrient factors that help maintain normal cardiovascular function. Garlic, a known cholesterol-lowering herb, is perhaps the most studied herb that aid in cholesterol metabolism and maintaining normal blood pressure. King of bitters, an indigenous herb of the Philippines, aids the function of the liver and help in cholesterol metabolism. Another ingredient is Pau d’ Arco, a strong antioxidant that helps the body cope with oxidative stress. Kolestrim capsule is heart-healthy. To protect yourself from heart disease, include Kolestrim coconut fiber in your diet. It is available at Mercury Drugstores and Watsons Drugstores nationwide.


ABS 7 Power Herbs
Good for Your Heart

(A Clinical Study on ABS Bitter Herbs)


In recent years, there has been a keen revival of interest in herbal medicine. This movement has acquired a deep significance, considering the economic level of our people and the rising cost of medical treatment and medicine. This interest has been accentuated by the policy of the government to improve the quality of life of our patients.

In the Philippines, 2 out of the 10 leading causes of disease are cardiovascular in nature, which are hypertension and diseases of the heart. The incidence of hypertension more than doubled during the past two years.

In a study conducted by Dr. Excelsior Valdez and Dr. Julieta Cariaga-Uy which compared the herbal food supplement ABS Bitter Herbs and statin (simvastatin) in a group of 300 patients who had blood cholesterol of 240 mg/dl or more aged 30-65 years old. One hundred fifty patients were randomized to be given a herbal supplement ABS Bitter Herbs with a drop out rate of 19.33%. Likewise, another 150 patients were given statin with drop out rate of 22%. Patients were followed-up for a period of 12 weeks and cholesterol monitoring was done every 4 weeks. After 12 weeks, both showed a significant decrease of blood cholesterol. The decline in ABS Bitter Herbs was 43.90% and 51.09% in simvastatin with no difference between the two. It was concluded that ABS Bitter Herbs is safe and effective in lowering blood cholesterol.

Dr. Valdez states that, “our results established that ABS Bitter Herbs can be a promising herb to treat dyslipidemia, considering its safety and effectiveness. It is a good adjunct to support patients with cholesterol problems the natural way. However, further experience and study for long term results are required before it can be advocated as a replacement for the treatment of dyslipidemia.”

Dr. Cariaga-Uy co-author advises, “that herbal supplements should be treated as supplements – an add-on to the nutritional maintenance of people with diseases such as hypertension and hypercholesterolemia. It has high-fiber content which is good for the heart and for overall wellness.”

ABS Bitter Herbs combines the potency and strength of 7 amazing herbs from the Philippines lagundi, luyang-dilaw, ampalaya, malungay, peppermint, Andrographis paniculata, and saluyot. The herbs synergistically perform multiple tasks which include detoxifying the body of harmful toxins, enhance the immune system, improve blood sugar utilization, and supports digestion. It has high-fiber content. Fiber is scientifically accepted to cut the risk of heart attack. A single capsule of ABS Bitter Herbs is 36.2% vegetable fiber.

ABS Bitter Herbs is the first Filipino herbal supplement certified by the global NSF International, which certifies for quality and reliability for herbal supplement products. It is available in Mercury Drug and all leading drugstores nationwide. It is also available in the convenient and affordable handy packs of 5 capsules each. To learn more about ABS Bitter Herbs visit http://www.abs-herbs.com.ph/index.html or call 926-3252/ 926-6304.




Scientific Name: Momordica charantia.Lin.

Common Name: Ampalaya, Balsampear, Bitter Melon, Bitter Gourd, Karela

The Philippine Momordica charantia or popularly known Ampalaya takes center stage in nutrition. In the Philippines, Ampalaya is one ingredient to the local delicacy the pinakbet. Ampalaya is included in the list of Sampung Halamang Gamot (10 Medicinal Plants) published by the Philippine Senate Committee in Health and Demography sponsored by Sen. Juan Flavier, a Doctor of Medicine and former Secretary of the Department of Health of the Philippines. Ampalaya is strongly recommended and advocated for people suffering from Diabetes Mellitus.

Throughout the world, Ampalaya is being studied for its health benefits as nutritional and food supplement. In the Physicians Guide to Philippine Nutraceuticals, Ampalaya has been found to contain numerous Phytonutrients like Charantin, Momordicin, polypeptide-p, Vitamins and Minerals that may act as Antioxidants. In the Philippine Food Composition Table of 1997 by the FNRI (Food and Nutrition Research Institute) it was further confirmed that uncooked Ampalaya Leaves and Fruits contain higher vitamins and minerals content compared to cooked edible parts of Ampalaya.

In the Philippine Journal of Internal Medicine, a study was reported and published about the efficacy of Ampalaya among type II Diabetes. It has concluded that Momordica charantia is a dietary adjunct to the treatment of type II diabetes.

In other parts of the world, voluminous independent studies have surfaced citing the

role of Ampalaya in preventing glucose intolerance. In a review of herbal remedies for Diabetes Melittus, Ampalaya has been cited to help lower glucose intolerance and control hyperglycemia. Another study done in India, demonstrated the synergistic effect of achieving glucose lowering effects of Ampalaya together with metformin and glibenclamide.

Other Studies conducted in Japan showed the protective and triglyceride lowering effect of Ampalaya. Other studies of Ampalaya has cited the beneficial effects in its role in the diet.

The Philippine Food Composition Tables. Food and Nutrition Research Institute. Department of Science and Technology. 2002; P.29, Taguig, Metro Manila, Philippines

Gabay sa Sampung Halamang Gamot. Senate Committee on Health and Demography. Republic of the Philippines. 1993, p 20, Philippines

Rosales,R M.D.and Fernando,R M.D. An Inquiry to the Hypoglycemic Action of Momordica charantia among type II Diabetic Patients. Philippine Journal of Internal Medicine.2001, July-August Vol.39 no.4 pp. 213-216. Manila, Philippines

Basch E, Gabardi S, Ulbricht C. Bitter melon (Momordica charantia): a review of efficacy and safety. Am J Health Syst Pharm. 2003 Feb 15;60(4):356-9. Cambridge, MA 02138-5204, USA

Senanayake GV, Maruyama M, Shibuya K, Sakono M, Fukuda N, Morishita T, Yukizaki C, Kawano M, Ohta H. Department of Biochemistry and Applied Biosciences, Faculty of Agriculture, University of Miyazaki, Miyazaki 889-2192, Japan.

Tongia A, Tongia SK, Dave M. Phytochemical determination and extraction of Momordica charantia fruit and its hypoglycemic potentiation of oral hypoglycemic drugs in diabetes mellitus (NIDDM).Indian Journal of Physiology & Pharmacology. 2004 Apr;48(2):241-4 India

Other References:

Guerero,AM: Philippine Medicinal Plants Found Effective. Fil Fam Phy 20(1):39, Jan-Mar 1982.

Raymundo, M. An Investigative and Comparative Study on the Hypoglycemic Effect of Momordica charantia and Aloe Vera. Phil J Int Med 35:103. May-June 1997

Baldwa, VS, Bhandau,CM, Phangaria, A: Clinical Trial in Rats with Diabetes of an Insulin-like Compound obtained from a plant source.Upsala Journal of Medicine,82:39,1977.

Sheng Q, Yao H, Xu H, Ling X, He T. Isolation of plant insulin from Momordica charantia seeds by gel filtration and RP-HPLC. School of Food Science and Technology, Southern Yangtze University, Wuxi . Zhong Yao Cai. 2004 Jun;27(6):414-6.

Cummings E, Hundal HS, Wackerhage H, Hope M, Belle M, Adeghate E, Singh J.
Momordica charantia fruit juice stimulates glucose and amino acid uptakes in L6 myotubes.
Department of Biological Sciences, University of Central Lancashire, Preston, England, UK.

Mol Cell Biochem. 2004 Jun;261(1-2):99-104



Scientific Name: Andrographis paniculata

Common Name: King of Bitters, Chuan Xin Lian

The Philippine Islands is a home of 7000 species of herbs and plants. Andrographis paniculata is one of them. This small shrub of 1-1.5meter in height is traditionally used in China, India and Southeast Asia to alleviate symptoms for colds. Scientific studies are showing that the main indication of Andrographis paniculata is for acute, chronic infections and boost immunity. Furthermore, other main indications points to Gastrointestinal disorders such as dyspepsia, flatulence, hepatitis, liver insufficiency and liver toxicity. Recent studies have proven that the benefits of these herbs depend on the antioxidant and phytonutrients, like flavonoids and xantenes, in Andrographis paniculata.

In a study published in the Journal of Ethnopharmacology last June 2004, phytochemical (Plant Chemicals) such as diterpene were isolated from Andrographis paniculata. These compounds are called andrographolides. These specific phytochemicals have demonstrated to inhibit the proliferation of cancer cells and enhance the proliferation and interlukin-2 induction in HPBLs (Human Peripheral Blood Lymphocytes) in a phase III study

In Malaysia a study conducted in the School of Bioscience and Biotechnology, University Kebangsaan Malaysia published in the Journal of Ethnopharmacology, demonstrated the antihyperglyceamic property of Andrographis paniculata comparing to other herbs in human patients.

Other promising studies of Andrographis paniculata demonstrated antiplatelet aggregation, antithrombotic activity that can be helpful in cardiovascular degenerative disease. More studies are coming out to prove that plants indeed have a basis in the modern healthcare delivery.


Ajaya Kumar,R et.al. Anticancer and Immunostimulatory compounds from Andrographis paniculata. Journal of Ethnopharmacology. June 2004 Vol. 92 pp 291-295.

Hussen,R et.al. Screening for antihyperglycaemic activity in several local herbs of Malaysia. Journal of Ethnopharmacology. June 2004 Vol. 92 pp 291-295.