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Published Online: 13 October 2015

Statin Alternatives: A Review of Over-the-Counter Lipid-Lowering Supplements

Publication: Alternative and Complementary Therapies
Volume 21, Issue Number 5


As the leading cause of death worldwide, cardiovascular disease has several modifiable risk factors, specifically dyslipidemia. Statin therapy has long been the mainstay treatment for dyslipidemia and has been demonstrated in various clinical trials to produce significant reductions in both major cardiovascular events and all-cause mortality. Given the changes per the 2013 American College of Cardiology/American Heart Association guidelines on the treatment of cholesterol, it is estimated that even more people now qualify for statin therapy. This can be problematic, as there is a sizeable population of patients whom are either statin-intolerant or prefer an alternative approach. The aim of this review is to describe the clinical trial data evaluating over-the-counter supplements including garlic (Allium sativum), green tea (Camellia sinensis) extract, guggul, red yeast (Monascus purpureus) rice, and niacin as alternative therapies for treating dyslipidemia. Research from current trials has shown that these supplements improve lipid profiles; however additional studies are needed to better establish their safety and clinical efficacy.

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cover image Alternative and Complementary Therapies
Alternative and Complementary Therapies
Volume 21Issue Number 5October 2015
Pages: 198 - 209


Published online: 13 October 2015
Published in print: October 2015
Published ahead of print: 10 August 2015


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