Good cholesterol (HDL) is helpful in preventing plaque buildup and heart attacks. We have great medications (principally statin drugs) for lowering LDL cholesterol. Unfortunately, the pharmacologic options for raising HDL levels are much more limited.
Healthy oils that foster higher HDL levels can be found in natural foods like avocados, ground flaxseed, extra-virgin olive oil, green leafy vegetables, and nuts (especially tree nuts like walnuts, pecans, almonds, and Brazil nuts). Many recent studies have focused on the health benefits of drinking coffee and green tea, and the results are generally encouraging. Long-term generous consumption of green tea has been shown to support healthy blood pressure and cholesterol levels.*
1. Tea supplements. Theaflavins, catechins (EGCG), and polyphenols are antioxidant compounds that occur naturally in tea and have been shown to support cholesterol health.* CardioTea, one daily, is a convenient and effective way to get the benefits of tea. Studies show that tea antioxidants like EGCG may help to support weight loss, especially when used as part of a healthy diet and exercise program.* There is a minimal amount of caffeine in CardioTea, about the same as in a quarter cup of tea.
2. Plant sterols (also called phytosterols). This is a natural product that comes from plants such as nuts, beans, and vegetable oils. Plant sterols help to maintain healthy cholesterol levels by reducing the amount of cholesterol you absorb from your food. Plant sterols have been used for almost three decades now and are an extensively tested over-the-counter therapy for cholesterol support. The FDA has an approved statement based on the wealth of scientific data about the benefits of plant sterols - "Foods containing at least 0.65 gram per vegetable oil sterol esters, easten twice a day with meals for a daily total intake of at least 1.3 grams, as part of a diet low in saturated fat and cholesterol, may reduce the risk of heart disease." Plant sterols have virtually no side effects, and although you can get them in the form of margarines, you will have to consume about two tablespoons of the spread and a lot of calories to get the full cholesterol-lowering dose of 1.3 to 2 grams of phytosterols.* That is why we recommend you get the plant sterols from a diet high in plants and CardioSterol capsules.
3. Red Yeast Rice. The first documented use of red yeast rice was in China during the Tang Dynasty in 800 A.D. Today, red yeast rice is a great option to support cholesterol health and is typically the first recommendation of Preventive Cardiologist, Dr. James O'Keefe, for managing healthy cholesterol levels.*