There is new research suggesting that the combination of red yeast rice, fish oil, a healthy diet and exercise can reduce cholesterol levels essentially the same as taking statin medications.
The research has shown that the combination of fish oil and red yeast rice were able to reduce LDL-cholesterol levels by almost 42.4%. Compare this to the 39.6% reduction in patients who took statin medications.
The results from this study are very important as they have shown a direct correlation between fish oil and red yeast rice in reducing cholesterol levels. This means a natural approach could be even more effective than taking statin drugs.
It has long been noted that high cholesterol levels have been linked with very is medical conditions such as heart disease, which is responsible for thousands of deaths per year. The American Heart Association has stated that almost 34% of Americans suffer from some type of heart disease, mainly caused by high cholesterol levels.
Details of the Study
74 people were taken in the study and they were all randomly split up into two groups. These people all suffered from hypercholesterolaemia. One group was given a daily statin medication, 40mg/d of simvastatin. The other group was given fish oil (EPA 2106 mg/d, DHA 1680 mg/d, N3 Oceanic) and red yeast rice (N3 Oceanic). The overall monacolin content associated with the red yeast rice was 5.3mg. 2.53mg was monacolin K otherwise known as lovastatin.
The study lasted for 12 weeks and once it was finished researchers found that both groups had a significant reduction in LDL cholesterol levels. There was no real difference between the two.
The groups that took the red yeast rice and fish oil recorded a significant cut in their triglyceride levels. This reduction was 29%, compared to the 9% reduction seen in the group that took the statin.
Why Did it Work?.
Researchers realized that taking red yeast rice would reduce cholesterol levels as it contains naturally occurring lovastatin and 9 other substances referred to as monacolins. Researchers realized that the amount of red yeast rice the individuals took was similar to regular statin levels. The reduction in triglyceride levels was also due to the fish oil taken.
“Red yeast rice contains naturally occurring lovastatin and nine different substances called monacolins that could inhibit 3-hydroxy-3-methylglutaryl coenzyme A reductase,” wrote Becker and co-workers.
More Studies Needed
Because of the results of this particular study, the researchers have lobbied for a longer and more intense trial.