SNS Kidney Assist XT: Premium Kidney Support Supplement
Serious Nutrition Solutions (SNS) has been around for a long time. I’ve used and recommended a number of their products over the years, including Joint Support XT and GlycoPhase. Their best-selling nootropic powder, Focus XT, was among the first “real” nootropic supplements I tried. In fact, I previously tried my hand at “hacking” the original formula:
At the time, my guess at the individual ingredient dosages was:
- 4g Choline Bitartrate
- 3g Tyrosine
- 2g ALCAR
- 750mg DMAE
- 30mg Vinpocetine
- 20mg Huperzine (standardized to 1% yielding 200mcg)
Grand total: 9800mg
SNS never confirmed or denied my guess, but alas, the brand overhauled the OG formula for a new and improved one.
As you may have noticed, the brand has been on a tear recently releasing a steady stream of premium-quality formulas, but not ones solely relegated to sports nutrition. Notable additions to the SNS lineup the past few months include Cardiovascular Support XT, Phosphatidic Acid XT, Anabolic XT, and the focus of today’s article -- Kidney Assist XT.
An Overview of Kidney Health
The kidneys serve as one of the body’s primary filtration/defense organs. Current estimates indicate that ~50% of US adults have hypertension (high blood pressure). Elevated blood pressure can constrict and narrow the blood vessels (reducing blood flow, oxygen & nutrient delivery), which can eventually damage and weaken the cardiovascular system, adversely affecting the kidneys.
Impaired kidney function reduces your body’s ability to remove waste and extra fluid. As a result, extra fluid in the blood vessels can further raise your blood pressure, creating a vicious cycle that leads to even greater damage and (ultimately) kidney failure.
In addition to living a healthy lifestyle (diet, exercise, stress management, sleep, etc.), certain supplements are also known to support renal health, the best of which are included in Kidney Assist XT.
SNS Kidney Assist XT Ingredients
Astragalus Root Powder (4,000mg)
Astragalus is one of the fundamental plants of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM). It contains various bioactives (collectively referred to as astragalus polysaccharides) that are known to possess a wide range of beneficial biological activities including[1,2,3,4]:
Hypertension (high blood pressure) is one of the primary contributors to kidney damage. Astragalus polysaccharides may reduce the increase in blood pressure (and resulting renal damage), and these effects may may be related to its anti-inflammatory and antifibrotic effects. It may also decrease the expression of transforming growth factor-β (TGF-β) and Integrin-linked kinase (ILK), which are involved in the growth and production of fibroblasts and cell migration. Furthermore, TGF-β is one of the most important regulatory molecules in the development of renal fibrosis
Additional research indicates that astragalus may increase the kidney’s estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR), which is a measure of how well a person’s kidneys are working. It has also been shown in multiple studies to improve proteinuria, a condition in which excessive levels of protein are found in the urine. Normally, protein levels in urine are low, when elevated, it is a sign that the kidneys may be damaged or not functioning optimally. To cap it off, astragalus has also been found to limit infections in people with reduced kidney function.
Grape Seed Extract (1,000mg)
Commonly regarded for its cardiovascular support benefits (usually in the 300-600mg range), a number of studies have also examined the effects of high-dose grape seed extract on kidney health.
Grape seed extracts are rich in a variety of antioxidants and polyphenols, including proanthocyanidins and other flavanoids.
Studies in individuals with chronic kidney disease (CKD) find that high doses of grape seed extract (upwards of 2,000mg per day), enhances GFR and significantly lower proteinuria.
Additional benefits of grape seed extract may be mediated via its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. Following 6 months of daily usage (2100mg/day), grape seed extract supplementation counteracts both plasma lipoperoxidation and carbonylation as well as c-reactive protein (CRP) and lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) -- two markers that check for inflammation and tissue damage. Grape seed extract was also found to significantly increase plasma catalase (CAT) and superoxide dismutase (SOD).
Animal studies have also shown that grape seed extract can combat the deleterious effects of high-fat diet-induced obesity and lipotoxicity.[9,10] These effects added to the blood pressure-reducing effects of grape seed extract make it great addition to Kidney Assist XT that supports renal health across multiple fronts.
Cranberry Extract (1,000mg)
Cranberries have a long history of use in supporting the kidneys and urinary health. In fact, the bioactives in cranberries inhibit the adherence of E. coli to the urinary tract[11,12], among other assorted benefits. Cranberry and its various assorted extracts have also been investigated for its benefits concerning cardiovascular health, oncology diseases, type 2 diabetes, metabolic syndrome, obesity, tooth decay and periodontitis. Similar to grape seed extract, it contains a panoply of polyphenols, including phenolic acids, anthocyanins, flavonoids, and proanthocyanidins.
Additionally, chronic kidney disease has also been associated with gut dysbiosis and increased gut barrier permeability, due to CKD-associated factors such as uremia, prescription pharmaceuticals, and certain dietary restrictions. Research finds that cranberries promote GI health, reduce inflammation and decrease cholesterol levels. Specifically regarding gut health, polyphenols in cranberry combat oxidative stress and inflammation in the gut while improving mitochondrial dysfunction by quenching reactive oxygen species.
Milk Thistle Extract (1,000mg)
Most often associated with liver health (which indirectly supports kidney health and it’s a supplement I take daily), milk thistle extract also has a long history of use for supporting the kidneys and gallbladder.
The primary phytoconstituent present in milk thistle is silymarin, which owes its beneficial actions to a potent flavonoid complex called silybin that acts as a potent antioxidant, neutralizing harmful free radicals. Research notes that silymarin is at least 10x as powerful as vitamin E. PLUS, it also helps increase levels of two additional, “master” antioxidants -- glutathione and superoxide dismutase (SOD).
Beyond offering liver/kidney defense/protection, silymarin can help the liver to repair injured cells and generate new ones via stimulating protein synthesis. Finally, milk thistle extract’s regenerative qualities have been investigated in cases of toxic fatty deposits in the liver, cirrhosis and chronic hepatitis.[16,17]
Curcumin C3® Complex (500mg)
Curcumin awareness and usage has exploded in recent years. It not only offers anti-inflammatory benefits (which promotes joint health and immune support), but also neuroprotective ones (a topic I’ve discussed at length for Engineer Insiders).
The role of curcumin in kidney health and CKD has been studied quite a bit. A 2021 meta-analysis, including five RCTs involving 290 participants with diabetic kidney disease, concluded that curcumin may offer significant potential benefits as the researchers found that curcumin supplementation improved levels of serum creatinine, total cholesterol, systolic blood pressure, and fasting blood glucose.
A prior 2014 study in Molecules found that despite poor bioavailability, curcumin improves tight junction proteins and corrects gut permeability, which reduces the levels of circulatory inflammatory biomolecules and may benefit individuals with CKD.
Recently published research in Cell, investigating the role of oxidative stress and mitochondrial dysfunction in kidney diseased, noted that curcumin supplementation “decreases 5/6Nx-induced alterations early in mitochondrial dynamics, bioenergetics, and oxidative stress, which may be associated with the preservation of renal function.”
Various studies also have found that curcumin supplementation improves renal function, lipid profile, blood pressure, and fasting blood glucose levels in individuals with kidney disease.[21,22]
Like many phytochemicals, curcumin suffers from poor bioavailability, which either requires large dosages or assorted absorption enhances (a la AstraGin or BioPerine…both of which are included in Kidney Assist XT).
Brought to you by the same company that offers BioPerine (Sabinsa), Curcumin C3 Complex is a patented and clinically-evaluated composition containing three curcuminoids (hence the “C3” moniker). Those three curcuminoids are:
Pine Bark Extract (300mg)
Yet another botanical rife with bioactives as well as a favorite inclusion in nootropic supplements and pump pre workouts, pine bark extract contains high levels of proanthocyanidins. These bioactives promote increased blood flow throughout the body via its effects on reactive oxygen species and inflammatory substances as well as their ability to stimulate eNOS (the enzyme that catalyzes nitric oxide, NO, production) and promote vasodilation.
Additional research also suggests that pine bark supports kidney function, prostate health and urinary flow.
Developed by NuLiv Science, AstraGin has established a formidable foothold in the supplement industry largely due to its ability to enhance the bioavailability/uptake of various amino acids, vitamins, and polyphenols, including L-Citrulline, Creatine, and curcumin, via increasing the activities of certain absorption-specific mRNA and transporters, including SGLT1, CAT1, and GLUT4.
AstraGin contains a novel and patented mixture of dried extracts of Astragalus membranaceus (10:1 hydroethanolic extract) and Panax notoginseng (50:1 aqueous extract) roots, standardized to contain ≥1.5% saponins.
The OG absorption enhancer in dietary supplements, BioPerine is the premier black pepper extract (standardized for piperine) offered by Sabinsa, the same ingredient house behind Curcumin C3 Complex. There’s also research to show that combining BioPerine with curcumin enhances bioavailability upwards of 2000% (20x)!
I reached out to the owner/founder of SNS for some insight into the creation behind the product:
"I love helping people and I love supplements, and that’s what SNS is about – helping people reach their health and fitness goals and to help improve their quality of life through providing top quality products at prices that people can afford.
...building out the Health Series of products is something that I’m very passionate about because we want to be able to provide products that can help improve quality of life and address different issues.
Kidney Assist XT was intentionally released in sequence very shortly after Cardiovascular Support XT because cardiovascular disease is the number one cause of death in the United States and it, along with diabetes contributes a lot to kidney damage. Kidney disease is the ninth leading cause of death in the US and a lot of people don’t even realize they have it or that it is happening until a lot of damage has taken place.
We are going to be continuing to build out the Health Series to address a lot of different issues, including getting restocked on Blood Pressure Support XT soon and the upcoming releases of Cholesterol Support XT, Prostate Support XT, and hopefully several other new additions this year. "
A lot of the hype around supplements is centered on pre workouts, protein powders, and other sports nutrition offerings. As wonderful as those products can be, there are countless other options available that deserve equal, if not greater attention.
Renal health (kidney function) isn’t the sexiest topic to discuss, but it’s something that is pertinent to every individual walking the planet. SNS Kidney Assist XT offers a great formula at a very reasonable price, making it a viable option for anyone seeking renal and cardiovascular support.
- Zheng W, Huang T, Tang QZ, Li S, Qin J, Chen F. Astragalus Polysaccharide Reduces Blood Pressure, Renal Damage, and Dysfunction Through the TGF-β1-ILK Pathway. Front Pharmacol. 2021 Oct 6;12:706617. doi: 10.3389/fphar.2021.706617. PMID: 34690754; PMCID: PMC8527034.
- Tian Z., Liu Y., Yang B., Zhang J., He H., Ge H., et al. (2017). Astragalus Polysaccharide Attenuates Murine Colitis through Inhibition of the NLRP3 Inflammasome. Planta Med. 83 (1-02), 70–77. 10.1055/s-0042-108589
- Huang Y. C., Tsay H. J., Lu M. K., Lin C. H., Yeh C. W., Liu H. K., et al. (2017). Astragalus Membranaceus-Polysaccharides Ameliorates Obesity, Hepatic Steatosis, Neuroinflammation and Cognition Impairment without Affecting Amyloid Deposition in Metabolically Stressed APPswe/PS1dE9 Mice. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 18 (12), 2746. 10.3390/ijms18122746
- Sun J., Wei S., Zhang Y., Li J. (2021). Protective Effects of Astragalus Polysaccharide on Sepsis-Induced Acute Kidney Injury. Anal. Cel Pathol (Amst) 2021, 7178253. 10.1155/2021/7178253
- Yoshino T, Horiba Y, Mimura M, Watanabe K. Oral Astragalus Root Supplementation for Mild to Moderate Chronic Kidney Disease: A Self-Controlled Case-Series. Front Pharmacol. 2022 Mar 1;13:775798. doi: 10.3389/fphar.2022.775798. PMID: 35300298; PMCID: PMC8921640.
- Zhang HW, Lin ZX, Xu C, Leung C, Chan LS. Astragalus (a traditional Chinese medicine) for treating chronic kidney disease. Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2014 Oct 22;(10):CD008369. doi: 10.1002/14651858.CD008369.pub2. PMID: 25335553.
- Wang HE, Gamboa C, Warnock DG, Muntner P. Chronic kidney disease and risk of death from infection. Am J Nephrol. 2011;34(4):330-6. doi: 10.1159/000330673. Epub 2011 Aug 22. PMID: 21860228; PMCID: PMC3169360.
- Turki K, Charradi K, Boukhalfa H, Belhaj M, Limam F, Aouani E. Grape seed powder improves renal failure of chronic kidney disease patients. EXCLI J. 2016 Jun 27;15:424-433. doi: 10.17179/excli2016-363. PMID: 27822171; PMCID: PMC5083963.
- CharradiKamel, ElkahouiSalem, KarkouchInes, LimamFerid, HamdaouiGhaith, HassineFethy Ben, El MayMichèle Veronique, El MayAhmed, and AouaniEzzedine. Grape seed and skin extract alleviates high-fat diet-induced renal lipotoxicity and prevents copper depletion in rat. Applied Physiology, Nutrition, and Metabolism. 38(3): 259-267. https://doi.org/10.1139/apnm-2012-0416
- Yusong Ding, Haiyan Li, Yang Li, Dandan Liu, Liyuan Zhang, Tongling Wang, Tao Liu, Long Ma, "Protective Effects of Grape Seed Proanthocyanidins on the Kidneys of Diabetic Rats through the Nrf2 Signalling Pathway", Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine, vol. 2020, Article ID 5205903, 9 pages, 2020. https://doi.org/10.1155/2020/5205903
- Risco E, Miguélez C, Sanchez de Badajoz E, Rouseaud A. Effect of american cranberry (Cysticlean) on Escherichia coli adherence to bladder epithelial cells. In vitro and in vivo study. Arch Esp Urol. 2010 Jul-Aug;63(6):422-30. English, Spanish. PMID: 20820081.
- C. G. Krueger, J. D. Reed, R. P. Feliciano, et al., Quantifying and characterizing proanthocyanidins in cranberries in relation to urinary tract health, Anal. Bioanal. Chem., 2013, 405, 4385–4395.
- Nemzer BV, Al-Taher F, Yashin A, Revelsky I, Yashin Y. Cranberry: Chemical Composition, Antioxidant Activity and Impact on Human Health: Overview. Molecules. 2022 Feb 23;27(5):1503. doi: 10.3390/molecules27051503. PMID: 35268605; PMCID: PMC8911768.
- De Almeida Alvarenga, L., Borges, N. A., Moreira, L. de S. G., Resende Teixeira, K. T., Carraro-Eduardo, J. C., Dai, L., … Mafra, D. (2019). Cranberries – potential benefits in patients with chronic kidney disease. Food & Function. doi:10.1039/c9fo00375d
- Rafieian-Kopaie M, Nasri H. Silymarin and diabetic nephropathy. J Renal Inj Prev. 2012 Jan 1;1(1):3-5. doi: 10.12861/jrip.2012.02. PMID: 25340091; PMCID: PMC4205984.
- Wu CH, Huang SM, Yen GC. Silymarin: a novel antioxidant with antiglycation and antiinflammatory properties in vitro and in vivo. Antioxid Redox Signal. 2011;14:353–66
- Vessal G, Akmali M, Najafi P, Moein MR, Sagheb MM. Silymarin and milk thistle extract may prevent the progression of diabetic nephropathy in streptozotocin-induced diabetic rats. Ren Fail. 2010;32:733–9.
- Jie Z, Chao M, Jun A, Wei S, LiFeng M. Effect of Curcumin on Diabetic Kidney Disease: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis of Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Clinical Trials. Evid Based Complement Alternat Med. 2021 Dec 2;2021:6109406. doi: 10.1155/2021/6109406. PMID: 34899954; PMCID: PMC8660194.
- Ghosh SS, Gehr TW, Ghosh S. Curcumin and chronic kidney disease (CKD): major mode of action through stimulating endogenous intestinal alkaline phosphatase. Molecules. 2014 Dec 2;19(12):20139-56. doi: 10.3390/molecules191220139. PMID: 25474287; PMCID: PMC6271001.
- Ho HJ, Shirakawa H. Oxidative Stress and Mitochondrial Dysfunction in Chronic Kidney Disease. Cells. 2022 Dec 25;12(1):88. doi: 10.3390/cells12010088. PMID: 36611880; PMCID: PMC9818928.
- Shafabakhsh R., Asemi Z., Reiner Z., Soleimani A., Aghadavod E., Bahmani F. The effects of nano-curcumin on metabolic status in patients with diabetes on hemodialysis, a randomized, double blind, placebo-controlled trial. Iranian Journal of Kidney Diseases . 2020;14(4):290–299.
- Martinez A. P. H., Cheng Y., Gindl-Bracho A., et al. Effect of oral supplementation with curcumin in diabetic subjects with proteinuric kidney disease: a randomized controlled trial. Journal of the American Society of Nephrology . 2020;31:p. 351.
- Shoba G, Joy D, Joseph T, Majeed M, Rajendran R, Srinivas PS. Influence of piperine on the pharmacokinetics of curcumin in animals and human volunteers. Planta Med. 1998 May;64(4):353-6. doi: 10.1055/s-2006-957450. PMID: 9619120.