2008-07-17 Red yeast rice, fish oil fight high cholesterol

http://www.reuters.com/article/2008/07/17/us-high-cholesterol-idUSCOL76707420080717

(Reuters Health) - A regimen of supplements and lifestyle coaching is just as effective as statin medication for reducing levels of low-density lipoprotein (LDL) or "bad" cholesterol, and more effective in helping people lose weight, new research shows.

People with high cholesterol who took red yeast rice and fish oil daily and received counseling on diet, exercise and relaxation techniques showed the same 40 percent drop in LDL cholesterol seen among people taking 40 milligrams of simvastatin daily, Dr. David J. Becker of the University of Pennsylvania Health System's Chestnut Hill Hospital and colleagues found. And they pared off an average of 10 pounds over 12 weeks, compared to less than a pound for patients taking the statin.(Read entire article)

2008-07-08 Fish oil and red yeast rice studied for lowering blood cholesterol

http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2008-07/mc-foa070808.php

Fish oil and red yeast rice studied for lowering blood cholesterol

ROCHESTER, Minn. -- A great deal of scientific evidence shows that cholesterol-reducing medications known as statins can help prevent coronary artery disease. Although the safety of these medications has been well documented, as many as 40 percent of patients who receive a prescription for statins take the drug for less than one year. Doctors believe that several factors -- including cost, adverse effects, poor understanding of statin benefits and patients' reluctance to take prescription medications long term -- may explain why some patients stop taking these medicines. In the July issue of Mayo Clinic Proceedings, a group of researchers from Pennsylvania examine whether an alternative approach to treating high blood cholesterol may provide an effective treatment option for patients who are unable or unwilling to take statins.(Read entire article)