You know those tough asparagus stalks you’ve been tossing in the trash during dinner prep? Turns out, they’ve been hiding a goldmine all this time.
The scientific community has finally caught on to this little-known secret. And not a moment too soon for people struggling with occasional sleeplessness. (And judging from my clinical experience, that’s a lot of people.)
A cutting-edge enzyme-treated asparagus stem extract named ETAS™ is hitting the market as I write this. And if the research is any indication, it could change the face of stress and sleep management forever.
The secret behind the sleep and relaxation benefits of this new breakthrough is something called heat shock proteins (HSPs). These little molecules are responsible for the soothing, stress-melting effects of a nice, hot bath or an hour in the sauna.
Technically, the release of HSPs can be triggered by several factors, including excess heat and free radicals — which you probably recognize as unhealthy.
But that’s the point. HSPs are designed by nature to come to your body’s rescue, serving as a protector and repairman for damaged proteins. Proteins are your body’s basic building blocks. And HSPs are what allow these proteins to stay functional in the face of the assaults that occur during normal, everyday living.
As you may have already guessed, though, your supply isn’t exactly limitless. In fact, HSP release declines with age. So any strategy that triggers the release of more heat shock proteins is going to do your body some pretty big favors.
But the good news is, you don’t need to spend all day soaking in a Jacuzzi or sweating in a sauna to manage this feat. (And it’s a good thing too, because as nice as it would be, I don’t know anyone who has that kind of time.)
Exercise is one effective way to trigger HSP release. Calorie restriction is another — which explains, at least in part, why these strategies have shown such promising results against aging in studies. But neither of these approaches exactly offer quick results.
This is where ETAS comes in. The asparagus extract in ETAS is rich in a class of compounds called hydroxymethylfurfural derivatives — and a (much easier to pronounce) molecule called asfural in particular.
All of these compounds trigger the release of a powerful, protective heat shock protein called HSP70. But asfural happens to be particularly good at it. (And as an added bonus, it also has notable antioxidant and circulation-boosting powers.)
In other words, asfural-rich ETAS delivers a heat shock protein windfall directly to your body — along with all the stress-melting, deep-sleep-promoting, anti-aging benefits those HSPs deliver.
Except, instead of starving or sweating your way back to total rejuvenation, all you have to do is take a supplement.
Sound too good to be true? Well, according to a significant (and still growing) body of research, it’s not.
Studies show that ETAS has a significant effect on two major stress hormones: chromogranin A and cortisol.
Japanese researchers first confirmed these benefits in the laboratory, where they found that ETAS significantly increased HSP70 expression in human cell lines. Small preliminary studies revealed the same effect in actual human subjects taking ETAS.
Experiments also showed that treating sleep-deprived mice with ETAS elevated their HSP expression and lowered stress responses.
Still, we’re mostly talking about animal research, here. So to get a really accurate picture of what ETAS can do, let’s look at the results of two different clinical intervention trials, published in 2014.
The first was a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study of 16 healthy adult male volunteers. (Small, but very well designed.) Results showed that supplementing with ETAS enhanced HSP release compared to placebo.
But that’s not all — it also delivered significant improvement to subjects’ autonomic nervous system (ANS) parameters. Your ANS is responsible for the physical stress response — like increased heart rate and respiration.
The second study was also randomized, double-blind, and placebo-controlled — another gold-standard trial. But this time, researchers focused on stress-related hormones and sleep. And just as animal models predicted, ETAS supplementation effectively suppressed cortisol elevation and decreased chromogranin A levels. It also had a significant benefit on subjects’ sleep states.
This is just some of the research that’s been published in the past two years. And it all tells the same story: That ETAS supplementation can drive down cortisol levels by as much as 80 percent. That it can decrease chromogranin A levels with twice the effectiveness of a placebo. And that it can dramatically improve mental stress, quality of sleep — even mood and energy levels — as a result.
All this, from a humble asparagus extract.
In fact, I’m so impressed by the research on ETAS, I worked with the manufacturer to secure an exclusive supply. And I’m actually the first one to make it available here in the U.S., as the feature ingredient in DreamLogic, my brand new sleep formula.
If you struggle with stress and occasional sleeplessness, I encourage you to check it out. Because the sooner you boost your body’s natural production of heat shock proteins, the sounder you’ll sleep…the more rejuvenated you’ll feel…and the healthier you’ll be as a result.
Waki H, et al. Effect of Enzyme-treated asparagus (ETAS™) on the Stress Response Substance in a Clinical Trial. Presented at the 35th European Society for Clinical Nutrition and Metabolism (ESPEN) Congress, Leipzig, Germany. 2013. (See “ETAS Clinical Evidence”)
Ogasawara J. Inhibitory Effect of ETAS against Amyloid Beta-induced Cellular Disorder in PC12 Cells. Amino Up Chemical Co. Ltd. Sapporo, Japan, no date.