ENGLEWOOD CLIFFS, N.J., July 10, 2007 /PRNewswire-FirstCall via COMTEX/ -- Nearly 76 million Americans are living with high or elevated LDL, otherwise known as "bad" cholesterol, and many others are concerned about their cholesterol levels. Helping in the fight to lower the risk factors for heart disease, Unilever has developed Promise activ(TM) SuperShots(TM) -- the first mini- drink with added natural plant sterols, ingredients that are clinically proven to help actively remove cholesterol as part of a diet low in saturated fat and cholesterol.
Promise activ(TM) SuperShots(TM) contains two grams of plant sterols per serving in a convenient mini-drink - giving consumers an easy way to get natural plant sterols for effective cholesterol reduction. The mini-drink also contains Heart Health Essentials(TM) Omega 3 alpha linolenic acid and Omega 6- and it is a good source of vitamin E. Natural plant sterols are one of the proven dietary methods for cholesterol reduction that are accepted by authorities such as the National Cholesterol Education Program and the FDA. Over 140 clinical studies have shown natural plant sterols can significantly lower LDL cholesterol.
Natural plant sterols occur in many foods but at low levels. It would take about 100 pounds of fruits, vegetables and nuts to get two grams of natural plant sterols. Promise activ(TM) SuperShots(TM) is a convenient way for consumers to easily get two grams of natural plant sterols per serving.
"Most Americans are not at optimal levels of cholesterol," said Lori Mosca, M.D., M.P.H., Ph.D., Director of Preventive Cardiology at New York- Presbyterian Hospital and author of Heart to Heart. "The good news is, we can better manage our levels through a comprehensive lifestyle approach that includes good nutrition and novel approaches to cholesterol reduction. One way that people can lower their cholesterol levels naturally is through using foods that are rich in natural plant sterols. Plant sterols are recommended as a therapeutic dietary option by the expert panel that established national cholesterol management guidelines."
Promise activ(TM) SuperShots(TM) is a one-of-a-kind, great tasting, powerful drink with fruit and yogurt. It comes in three flavors: strawberry, peach, and raspberry. Plant sterol-containing foods should be used twice a day with meals.
Since the 1950s, nearly 600 studies have demonstrated the cholesterol- lowering, safety and mechanism of action of plant sterols. Natural plant sterols actively help block the absorption of cholesterol from the foods eaten as well as the cholesterol made naturally by the body(1). Lowering the amount of cholesterol in the bloodstream can decrease a person's chances of developing heart disease(2). For example, a 10% reduction in cholesterol can cut a 40-year-old man's incidence of heart disease by about 50%(3).
"Promise activ(TM) SuperShots(TM) provide two grams of plant sterols in each three-ounce drink. Plant sterols can help reduce LDL cholesterol for most people, when used daily as part of a diet low in saturated fat and cholesterol," said Douglas Balentine, Director of Nutrition and Health at Unilever North America. "This new product innovation is an example of Unilever's commitment to helping people maintain a healthy heart and to stay healthy for longer."
Promise has been developing its expertise in heart health and cholesterol for the last 40 years, and its portfolio of products includes Promise(R) Buttery Spread and Take Control(R) Spread in the United States, and Flora(R) and Becel(R) in Europe. Heart health and cholesterol management information and educational materials can be found at www.promisehealthyheart.com.
"Promise activ(TM) SuperShots(TM) represent a significant expansion of the Promise brand in the United States," explained Eric Berman, Brand Director, Promise. "Our mission is to deliver delicious foods that can aid in the overall improvement of heart health. We're particularly excited with this latest innovation as it represents a 'first' not only for the Promise brand, but for the American marketplace as well."
Promise activ(TM) SuperShots(TM) will be available in retail grocery stores in the dairy aisle beginning in June l 2007, priced at approximately $3.99 for a pack of four.
About Plant Sterols
Foods containing at least 0.4 grams per serving of plant sterols eaten twice a day with meals for a daily total intake of at least 0.8 grams, as part of a diet low in saturated fat and cholesterol, may reduce the risk of heart disease. A single serving of this product provides 2 grams of plant sterols.
Promise spreads can help maintain a healthy heart when eaten instead of butter or margarine as part of a diet low in saturated fat, trans fat, and cholesterol. Besides a wonderfully delicious buttery taste, Promise Buttery Spread's Heart Health Essentials(TM) formulation was developed to provide a balanced blend of essential fatty acids and vitamins with no trans fats and no cholesterol.
Unilever [NYSE: UL, UN], one of the world's largest consumer products companies, aims to add vitality to life by meeting everyday needs for nutrition, hygiene and personal care. Each day, around the world, consumers make 150 million decisions to purchase Unilever products. The company has a portfolio of brands that make people feel good, look good and get more out of life.
In the United States these brands include recognized names such as: Axe, "all," Ben & Jerry's, Bertolli, Breyers, Caress, Country Crock, Degree, Dove personal care products, Hellmann's, Knorr, Lipton, Popsicle, Promise, Q-Tips, Skippy, Slim-Fast, Snuggle, Suave, Sunsilk and Vaseline. All of the preceding brand names are registered trademarks of the Unilever Group of Companies. Dedicated to serving consumers and the communities where we live, work and play, Unilever in the United States employs approximately 13,000 people in more than 60 office and manufacturing sites in 24 states and Puerto Rico - generating nearly $10 billion in sales in 2006. For more information visit www.unileverusa.com.
(1) Pouteau EB, Monnard IE, Piguet-Welsch C, et. al. Non-esterified plant sterols solubilized in low fat milks inhibit cholesterol absorption--a stable isotope double-blind crossover study. Eur J Nutr 2003;42(3):154-64.
(2) Kannel WB, Neaton JD, Wentworth D, et. al. Overall and coronary heart disease mortality rates in relation to major risk factors in 325,348 men screened for the MRFIT. Multiple Risk Factor Intervention Trial. Am Heart J. 1986;112(4):825-36.
(3) M Law et al. By how much and how quickly does reduction in serum cholesterol concentration lower the risk of ischaemic heart disease? British Medical Journal 1994; 308: 367-373.