Can Red Yeast Rice Reduce Cholesterol?

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Research Indicates Supplement Lowers LDL Cholesterol Levels

By a number of estimations, as much as 10% of individuals that get cholesterol reducing statins encounter unpleasant muscle discomfort, and quite a few cease taking the drug treatments simply because of it.

Currently a brand new investigation indicates that a dietary nutritional supplement marketed in nutrition stores and food markets might end up being a beneficial substitute to statins for many.

 Individuals that took red yeast rice dietary supplements and concluded a 12-week lifestyle treatment program experienced larger reductions in LDL cholesterol compared to patients that finished the same lifestyle plan yet took placebo tablets.

The research had been small and also the cholesterol decrease did not compete with that usually observed in patients handled with high dosages of statins such as Crestor, Mevacor, Lipitor, and also Zocor.

Variations in Levels of Red Yeast Rice

Also, the research authors warn that given that nutritional dietary supplements are not necessarily controlled in the identical way in which prescription and over-the-counter medicines are, buyers can’t always end up being certain of the quantity and top quality of the items they purchase.

Research co-author Ram Gordon, MD, tells that whenever his research group had twelve various brands examined, they discovered a 100-fold variation in the levels of red yeast rice.

Gordon mentioned an independent examination of red yeast rice items, where 4 of twelve included a contaminant recognized as citrinin, which will damage the kidneys.

“The majority of the brands declare they comprise 600 milligrams of red yeast rice for each capsule, yet that might or might not be accurate,” Gordon states. “Red yeast rice might possess great promise for individuals that cannot or will not consider statins. Nevertheless, until it can be better controlled and has much better oversight by the Food and drug administration, we cannot endorse it.”

Made use of medicinally by the Chinese for hundreds of years, red yeast rice is actually made from a fungus which develops on rice. It consists of ingredients collectively identified as monacolins that slow down the development of cholesterol. A single monacolin known as monacolin K is a natural type of statin. The investigators write that the dosage of red yeast rice utilized in their research had been equivalent to a daily dosage of 6 milligrams per day of Mevacor. The normal dosage of Mevacor for cholesterol therapy is twenty milligrams to forty milligrams per day.

The recently released study incorporated sixty two individuals with higher LDL cholesterol that had halted taking statins due to the fact of muscle pain.

Fifty percent of the study individuals got 3 600-milligram tablets of red yeast rice each day and fifty percent got placebo tablets which were similar in appearance and odor to the red yeast rice. And also both treatment groups had been enrolled in a 12-week lifestyle course that integrated once-a-week, 3 hour instructional classes covering eating habits, physical exercise, and stress managing.

The red yeast rice dietary supplements utilized in the research had been independently examined to make certain that the dosage had been correct.

Red Yeast Rice versus a Placebo

Following 6 months, individuals that got the red yeast rice reduced their LDL cholesterol by an average of 35 mg/dL, in comparison to 15 mg/dL involving the placebo group.

Overall cholesterol amounts additionally improved much more in the red yeast rice group. Muscle discomfort scores, weight reduction, and liver and muscle enzyme amounts did not vary considerably among the groups.

The research appears inside the most recent issue of the journal Annals of Internal Medicine.

Cardiologist Robert Eckel, MD, operates a lipid center in the University of Colorado and also is a past-president of the American Heart Association. He explains that statin-related muscle discomfort is a frequent issue which has not really obtained sufficient attention.

Eckel states muscle discomfort problems frequently resolve whenever patients are changed to a different statin or perhaps when dosages can be reduced. Generally there are additionally non-statin drug treatments which lower cholesterol, like cholesterol-blocker Zetia.

“It isn’t really apparent if the sufferers in this research had been taking very large dosages of statins,” he states. “If they had been, their muscle discomfort may have gone away using reduced dosages or by changing to a low-end statin.”