Plant sterols might help reduce cholesterol levels by limiting the amount of cholesterol that is able to enter the body. Some plant sterols might also reduce how much cholesterol is made in the body.
People commonly use plant sterols for lowering cholesterol levels. Plant sterols are also used for heart disease, colon cancer, stomach cancer, obesity, heart attack, and many other conditions, but there is no good scientific evidence to support many of these other uses.
Don't confuse plant sterols with beta-sitosterol or sitostanol. These are specific types of plant sterols.
Uses & Effectiveness ?
Likely Effective for
- Inherited tendency towards high cholesterol (familial hypercholesterolemia). When used along with a cholesterol-lowering diet, taking plant sterols by mouth reduces low-density lipoprotein (LDL or "bad") cholesterol levels in children and adults with high cholesterol levels due to familial hypercholesterolemia.
- High cholesterol. Taking plant sterols by mouth lowers low-density lipoprotein (LDL or "bad") cholesterol levels in people with high cholesterol who are also following a cholesterol-lowering diet. But it doesn't seem to reduce triglyceride levels.
Possibly Effective for
Special Precautions and Warnings
Children: Plant sterols are likely safe when taken by mouth in doses of 1.6-2.3 grams daily for up to 6 months.
Sitosterolemia, a rare inherited fat storage disease: People with this condition might have a build up of plant sterols and related fats in their blood and tissues. Taking plant sterols might make this condition worse. Don't take plant sterols if you have sitosterolemia.
Short bowel syndrome, a condition related to removal of part of the gut: Plant sterols should be used cautiously in people with this condition. They might affect liver function.
We currently have no information for PLANT STEROLS overview.
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