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Red yeast rice is effective because it naturally contains cholesterol-lowering "statin" compounds, such as lovastatin. However, studies in which statin drugs have been given with high-dose niacin therapy suggest that this is not a helpful combination for most people and there are safety concerns. The same issues are likely to arise with the combination of red yeast rice and high-dose niacin therapy, so this combination should be carefully evaluated. For more details about the effects of statins given with high-dose niacin, see the Niacin section of the B Vitamins Product Review (which includes our tests of niacin and other B vitamins).

Be aware that some evidence suggests that taking phytosterols in addition to red yeast rice may be helpful.

For more information about red yeast rice (including's product tests), see the Red Yeast Rice Supplements Review >>

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