~Cholesterol Reduction, Part 3 - Summary


Diseases associated with high cholesterol (and fats) are the number one killer. Fats also play a key role in the incidence of cancers and many other degenerative diseases. Cholesterol exists only in animal tissues, therefore, one's diet is an important first step in its control. For some people, however, limiting fat and cholesterol intake alone is not enough to reduce serum cholesterol to safe levels because of their own liver's production of excess cholesterol. The use of supplements to augment dietary modification can help reduce cholesterol without the side effects of many drugs.

The effectiveness of any cholesterol-reduction therapy varies considerably between individuals. The nutrients we recommend have not only been shown to lower cholesterol, but also protect against cardiovascular disease by other mechanisms such as inhibition of cholesterol-oxidizing free radicals and abnormal blood clots inside arteries (thrombosis).

The following nutritional supplements offer synergistic benefits to assist dietary modification to reduce total serum cholesterol and elevate HDL cholesterol:
  • Policosanol, take one tablet twice per day with meals: one in the afternoon and one in the evening.
  • Soluble fiber (psyllium, guar gum, and/or pectin), 4 to 6 grams before any high-fat meal.
  • Chitosan, three to six 500-mg chitosan capsules and one 1000 mg ascorbic acid capsule right before a high-fat meal.
  • Niacin, 1500 to 3000 mg a day (if tolerable). Consider flush-free niacin (inositol hexanicotinate) to avoid a "red face."
  • Artichoke extract, 300 mg, 3 times a day.
  • Garlic, 900 to 8000 mg a day.
  • Curcumin, 900 to 1800 mg a day.
  • Gugulipid, 140 mg 1 to 2 times a day.
  • Green tea, 350 mg a day of green tea, 95% polyphenol extract.
  • Perilla oil, 6000 mg a day. We suggest taking six 1000-mg gel caps daily. If triglycerides are high, take 6000 mg of fish oil instead.
  • Vitamin E, 400 to 800 IU daily
  • Soy protein extract, 2 heaping teaspoons (5 to 6 grams) of soy powder daily. Soy powder can be easily dispersed and has a light peanut butter taste. For those who want to avoid powders, one capsule of Mega Soy Extract (135 mg/40% extract) twice a day may work as well.
  • Selenium, 200 to 600 mcg daily.
Caution: Anyone who is seeking to use dietary supplements to lower high cholesterol must verify efficacy by having a cholesterol blood test 45 to 60 days after initiating a nutritional regimen. If supplements fail to work, cholesterol-lowering drugs should be considered. While blood testing is not mandatory for healthy people seeking to reduce their risk of heart attack or stroke, it is recommended that everyone have an annual blood test to establish a benchmark giving you the ability to monitor and optimize your life extension program.

For more information

Contact the National Heart, Lung, & Blood Institute (301) 251-1222.

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