The Role of Plant Sterols
Over 85 studies have shown that plant sterols significantly lower cholesterol. Over 50 clinical studies have proven that plant sterols in ProActiv significantly lower cholesterol. For an overview of these studies related to plant sterols in ProActiv, download our key reference list.
Plant sterols have been shown to reduce blood cholesterol in 2-3 weeks as part of a healthy diet and lifestyle, including plenty of fruit and vegetables.35
Plant sterols are naturally occurring substances that are found in everyday foods like fruit and vegetables, vegetable oils and nuts and grains, however, it is not possible to consume the recommended daily amount of plant sterols required for cholesterol lowering from these foods alone.36,37
Plant sterols have a chemical structure similar to that of cholesterol.38 Plant sterols partly block the absorption of cholesterol from the gut. This results in a reduction in blood LDL-cholesterol.
Research also demonstrates that plant sterols have a modest triglyceride-lowering effect.39
An effective way to reduce cholesterol with a dietary change is to include 1.5-3g plant sterols into the daily diet:35
- 1.5-2.4g plant sterols daily can lower LDL-cholesterol by 7 to 10%3,4
- 2.5-3g plant sterols daily can lower LDL-cholesterol by 10 to 12.5%40,41
in 2-3 weeks as part of a healthy diet and lifestyle with sufficient fruit and vegetables.
High cholesterol is a risk factor in the development of coronary heart disease. As coronary heart disease has multiple risk factors, more than one may need to be improved to reduce overall risk of it.
Plant sterols should be considered alongside other diet and lifestyle changes in:42
- Individuals with elevated blood cholesterol levels
- Individuals on cholesterol-lowering medications such as statins
- Individuals with type 2 diabetes
- Individuals with familial hypercholesterolaemia