Pilot study finds evidence that annatto-based tocotrienols support liver-related biomarkers

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A recent study published found that an annatto-based delta tocotrienol (DeltaGold from American River Nutrition) may be beneficial to people with non-alcoholic fatty liver disease.

A recent study published by Complementary Therapies in Medicine1 found that an annatto-based delta tocotrienol (DeltaGold from American River Nutrition; Hadley, MA) may be beneficial to people with non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD). In the randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial, 71 subjects with NAFLD were either given 300 mg of delta-tocotrienols twice daily or placebo for 24 weeks.

The primary endpoints researchers were testing was the change from baseline in fatty liver index (FLI) and homeostasis model of insulin resistance (HOMA-IR). FLI includes measures of weight, body mass index, waist circumference, gamma-glutamyl transferase (GGT), and triglycerides, to predict liver fat storage. The secondary endpoints were the change from baseline in high sensitivity C-reactive protein (hs-CRP), malondialdehyde (MDA), alanine transaminase (ALT), aspartate transaminase (AST), and grading of hepatic steatosis on ultrasound.

Results showed that all measures of the primary and secondary endpoints saw significant reductions following supplementation with delta-tocotrienols, compared to placebo. After 24 weeks of supplementation, subjects saw an 18-21% reduction in ALT and AST, indicating improvements in hepatic stress, as well as reductions in triglycerides (13%), MDA (19%), and hs-CRP (21%), indicating additional improvement of inflammation, compared to a previous 12 clinical trial2, for which this new study is a continuation of. Pointing to continued intrahepatic fat reduction over time, FLI score decreased 15% at 24 weeks, compared to 11% after 12 weeks of supplementation. To further support this hypothesis, researchers observed that during the 12-week treatment period, patients in the tocotrienol-supplemented group lost an average of 9.7 pounds, whereas weight loss increased to 14.9 pounds after 24 weeks.

“While the earlier 12-week study already suggested significant benefits of DeltaGold for NAFLD patients, we now have evidence of a compelling duration-response benefit of tocotrienol to liver health,” said Barrie Tan, PhD, president of American River Nutrition. He points at the obvious weight loss and ultrasonography findings as strong proof of DeltaGold’s effect. “Doctors currently recommend alpha-tocopherol supplementation for NAFLD patients in an effort to reduce oxidative stress, but we think that tocotrienol will be much more powerful and will go further to help. This is the subject of an ongoing 12-month clinical trial, which will compare the effects of alpha-tocopherol versus DeltaGold in NAFLD patients, and we look forward to sharing those results soon.”


  1. Pervez MA et al. “Delta-tocotrienol supplementation improves biochemical markers of hepatocellular injury and steatosis in patients with nonalcoholic fatty liver disease: A randomized, placebo-controlled trial.” Complementary Therapies in Medicine, vol. 52 (2020)
  2. Pervez MA et al. “Effects of delta-tocotrienol supplementation on liver enzymes, inflammation, oxidative stress and hepatic steatosis in patients with nonalcoholic fatty liver disease. Turkish Journal of Gastroenterology, vol. 29 (2018): 170-176