What are the best ways to lower cholesterol?
High cholesterol is a danger sign that you need to have looked at by your doctor, many scientific studies have demonstrated the link between high cholesterol and heart disease, if you have high cholesterol or a bad family history of heart disease it is important that you schedule an appointment with your doctor for guidance on the best ways to lower cholesterol.
Traditionally most doctors would prescribe NSAIDs (Statin drugs) to lower cholesterol, statin drugs do work but they are not without some side effects,there has been a growing band of evidence that supplements can be used successfully for lowering cholesterol,assuming that this is true what are the best supplements for lowering cholesterol?
Where is the proof that supplements lower cholesterol?
Let’s take a look at some clinical trials that were conducted, according to this study, a new dietary supplement containing Red yeast extract,(RYR) sugar cane derived policosanols,(SCP) and artichoke extracts(AE) was used in a double blind randomized controlled parallel study of 39 people, aged from 21 years to 55 years,these people had moderate hypercholesterolemia (high cholesterol)
The study took place over a 16 week period,the 39 people were assigned to two groups in which they were given a dietary supplement containing RYR,SCP and AE or a placebo.
Fasting blood tests
Method Fasting blood tests were completed to determine Cholesterol-LDL,Total cholesterol,high-density lipoprotein HDL,Triglycerides,plasma levels of Vitamins C+E,after 4,8,12 and 16 weeks total polyphenols and malondialdehyde were measured.
Results: Cholesterol (LDL) and Total cholesterol reduced respectively, by 21.4% and 14.1% at week 16 in the Dietary supplement group compared to the placebo group.
Conclusion: Taking a daily dosage of this new dietary supplement decreased Cholesterol LDL and Total cholesterol,making supplements for lowering cholesterol an interesting and convenient way to manage high levels of cholesterol.
Dietary supplements are manufactured with the intention of supplementing a diet, usually in pill, capsule or tablet form,supplements contain nutrients usually extracted from food sources or they may be synthetic.Supplements contain minerals, vitamins, fatty acids and amino acids,they also contain plant pigments or polyphenols and are marketed as having a biological effect.
Guidelines: It is against the law to promote these supplements as a cure or prevention for health conditions,the product label must a disclaimer that the FDA “has not evaluated the claim that the supplement/product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease” only a drug can legally make a claim like this.
The FDA will enforce this rule, they also prohibit the sale of any supplement that is dangerous or doesn’t meet strict manufacturing practises.
Are supplements safe to take?
Lot’s of supplements have some mild effects,at the same time there are many supplements without any side effects.Each person’s metabolism is different,their ability to absorb a new supplement may differ so results may differ, it is important to get the right advice on the best supplements for lowering cholesterol.
There are few if any major risks associated with taking supplements.However,anything new going into your body must come with a warning . According to the National Institute for Health website.
Supplements have active ingredients that may have a strong effect on the body, their advice is to be aware of potential side effects when starting to take a new product. Just like drugs, supplements can cause side effects if people take them with medication or by taking a combination of supplements.
Certain supplements may increase the risk of bleeding, or if taken before surgery or after surgery the person’s response to an anesthetic may be affected.
Supplements and drugs
Supplements may not combine well with certain drugs such as: 1.Blood thinners/blood clotting like aspirin or Coumadin or Warfarin
2. St John’s wort can affect people taking anti-depressants or birth control pills by speeding the breakdown of the drug and reducing how effective it is.
3. Supplements that contain anti-oxidants (Vitamin C, E) may reduce how effective types of cancer chemo are. Get medical advice: If you would like to try supplements for lowering cholesterol the best advice is to talk it over with your doctor, give the information the him,discuss what your health goals are, whether or not to stay on prescription drugs or whether to try supplements for lowering cholesterol .
In some cases doctors are not aware of the health benefits of taking supplements because in medical school the time spent learning about nutrition is minimal,people that have studied nutrition and supplements are much better placed to discuss what are the best supplements for lowering cholesterol.
What to look for in a supplement to lower cholesterol
|Cholesterol-lowering supplement||May reduce LDL & Total Cholesterol||Side effects-drug interactions|
|Serrapeptase||Mild side effects-mainly stomach upset|
|Barley||No side effects|
|Blond psyllium||Diarrhea,stomach pain,nausea,less absorption of certain nutrients such as calcium,vitamin B-12 and iron|
|Fish oil||May reduce triglycerides||Fishy aftertaste,gas,nausea,bad breath,diarrhea or vomiting,don’t use with blood thinners|
|Flaxseed (ground)||May reduce triglycerides||Possible bloating, gas or diarrhea,may interact with some blood-thinning medications, such as aspirin,and warfarin|
|Green tea (extract)||May lower LDL cholesterol||May cause bloating, gas or diarrhea,may interact with some blood-thinning medications, such as aspirin,and warfarin|
|Niacin||Possible headaches,vomiting,nausea,flushing and itching|
|Oat bran||No side effects|
|Plant stanols||Posible diarrhea|
|Plant sterols||May be ineffective if you take ezetimibe (Zetia), May cause nausea, indigestion, gas, diarrhea or constipation;|
|Soy (protein)||May reduce LDL||None|
|Whey (protein)||May cause nausea, constipation,diarrhea or gas|
Best supplements for lowering cholesterol
My personal favorite is Serrapeptase,why? My cholesterol has been really high for many years,even though I took Lipitor a cholesterol lowering drug I almost died from a massive heart attack. I was looking for a natural supplement to lower my cholesterol.
I saw an ad saying about Serrapaptase and I wondered does Serrapeptase lower cholesterol, I decided to try the strongest dosage of 250,000 IU, three per day for 4 months, I went for a blood test Serrapeptase had reduced my cholesterol by 50% in only four months.
You can read my story HERE.