Can phytosterols/stanols be used in combination with statin drugs to control hyperlipidemia?
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Statin drugs reduce cholesterol synthesis. Plant-derived sterols and stanols ("phytosterols/stanols" reduce cholesterol absorption. Clinical trials confirm that the 2 products together lower blood levels of low-density lipoprotein (LDL)-cholesterol more than can be achieved with either agent alone. For patients not achieving target lipid levels with a low-dose statin, adding phytosterol/stanol-containing functional foods should be an effective means to further lower LDL-cholesterol. However, no studies exist to confirm that phytosterols/stanols reduce the risk of coronary heart disease, either alone or in combination with statins.
Evidence-based practice 12, no. 06 (2009): 13