The trend toward heart-healthy meals and snacking continues to grow. With 83 million Americans already afflicted with cardiovascular disease, the market for heart-healthy products is shifting from general heart health maintenance to higher concerns over risk-factor reduction. In 2011, an impressive one-third of all grocery shoppers sought out “reduces the risk of heart disease” claims on food labels (FMI, 2011).


Along those lines, Corazonas Foods, Long Beach, Calif., said it has begun using a branded cholesterol-lowering ingredient, Protanica®, in the company’s Heartbar™ Oatmeal squares. Protanica® is non-GMO plant sterol from Arboris, LLC, Savannah, Ga.


“Arboris® recently introduced its flagship plant sterol product Protanica®, a heart-healthy functional food ingredient, into North American markets and is pleased to partner with Corazonas as its heart-healthy non-GMO plant sterol of choice,” says Manuel Canales, Arboris president and CEO. “With this new product offering, we are responding to market demand for two significant food trends: heart-healthy and non-GMO foods.”


“We are very excited to partner with Arboris and the Protanica® brand to bring to consumers the continued benefit of proven heart-healthy foods extended to a non-GMO offering,” adds Michelle Canellopoulos, Corazonas’ vice president of marketing.


Officials say more than 140 human clinical studies over the past 50 years have shown that plant sterols are safe and effective in reducing LDL “bad” cholesterol levels (typically by 8-10%), and that adding them as an ingredient to foods is a safe and convenient approach to dietary management of cholesterol.


As the makers of Protanica®, Arboris sees growing acceptance and adoption of plant sterols as a functional food ingredient in North America and believes that, in time, an increasing number of food products including dairy beverages, baked goods, yogurts, and others will include heart-healthy sterols in their offerings.


Arboris says Protanica® has distinct advantages among plant sterols on the market today. It is compatible with non-GMO verified foods and has been clinically tested and demonstrated to be safe and effective.


Corazonas was founded in 2005 with the mission to ensure everyone living with high cholesterol has access to great-tasting snacks with proven benefits for the heart. They strive every day to create delicious snacks that combine heart-healthy ingredients with amazing taste. Corazonas’ motto is to give people the Freedom to Snack™. For more information on Heartbar™ please visit