In the News - Press Coverage     Testimonials     Press Releases Reviews Cholesterol-Lowering Supplements: Many Pass Quality Testing, One Fails

— Sterol and Policosanol Products Analyzed Evidence for Other Cholesterol-Lowering Ingredients Evaluated —
White Plains, New York — March 25, 2010 — Certain dietary supplements can help reduce elevated cholesterol levels. A new report from reviews the evidence behind each of the popular cholesterol-lowering ingredients and provides test results for twelve supplement brands. testing focused on supplements containing plant sterols or policosanol and showed most to contain the listed amount of ingredient and to meet other quality standards. However, one product failed to break apart in the disintegration test, suggesting that its sterols would not be properly released and used by the body.

Elevated cholesterol is a key risk factor for heart disease. According to the American Heart Association, 102.2 million Americans age 20 and older have elevated blood cholesterol levels. Lifestyle changes such as improving diet, losing weight and increasing exercise are often effective at improving cholesterol levels. Various supplement ingredients may be helpful as well, lowering low-density lipoprotein (LDL or "bad cholesterol"), raising high-density lipoprotein (HDL or "good cholesterol"), and improving the LDL/HDL ratio. Some supplements may also reduce triglycerides.

Among the supplement ingredients proven to work are plant sterols, also known as phytosterols, which bind cholesterol in the gut. The FDA permits plant sterol-containing products to claim that they help reduce the risk of heart disease when used with a diet low in saturated fat and cholesterol. This claim can only be made if the product provides a minimum of 800 mg of free sterols or 1,300 mg of sterol esters divided into at least two servings per day taken with meals. identified seven brands of plant sterol-containing supplements that met this requirement. However, an eighth product would not break apart to release its ingredients within the allowed 30 minutes. Even when tested for six hours, the product still did not fully disintegrate.

Policosanol is another supplement ingredient touted to lower cholesterol, although the clinical evidence is mixed. Tests by identified four policosanol-containing supplements that contained the claimed amount of the policosanol and met other quality standards.

The new report includes information about other ingredients that may improve cholesterol and/or triglyceride levels. Several of these have been the subject of separate test reports by including fish oil/omega-3 fatty acids, garlic, niacin, red yeast rice, and soy protein. Evidence is also reviewed for guggulsterone, pantethine, and Sytrinol.

The Product Review of Cholesterol-Lowering Supplements (Plant Sterols and Policosanol) provides test results for twelve products. Seven were selected by and five others are included in the reports for having passed the same evaluation through's Voluntary Certification Program.Supplements covered in the report are Centrum Cardio, CholestaPro, Nature Made CholestOff, and TwinLab Cholesterol Success as well as supplements from Enzymatic Therapy, Nature's Code, Nature's Life, NSI, Solgar, Swanson, Vitamin Shoppe, and Windmill Rx. The report provides evaluations, ingredient comparisons, and expert tips on buying and using these and other cholesterol-lowering supplements. is a leading provider of consumer information and independent evaluations of products that affect health and nutrition. Reviews of other popular types of supplements are available from Subscription to is available online. The company is privately held and based in Westchester, New York. It has no ownership from, or interest in, companies that manufacture, distribute, or sell consumer products.

— END —

back to top



Coronavirus Information Center
Coronavirus Information Center
Answers to Critical Questions About COVID-19.

Product Reviews

In addition to our product reviews our encyclopedia covers the following:

Herbs & Supplements


Drug Interactions

Alternative Therapies



Follow us on...
facebook twitter
Join |  Sign In
Join Us on Facebook! Join Us on Instagram! Join Us on Twitter! Join Us on YouTube! Join Us on YouTube!
Product Reviews
Brands Tested
Health Conditions
CL Answers
Clinical Updates
Recalls & Warnings
Recommended Intakes
Where to Buy Products
Testing Program
How Products Were Tested
Quality Certification Program
Join CL Today
Join Free Newsletter
Group Subscriptions
Gift Membership
About Us
The CL Seal
CL Survey
Privacy Policy
Contact Us/Help

©2020, LLC. All rights reserved. A single copy of a report may be printed for personal use by the subscriber. It is otherwise unlawful to print, download, store or distribute content from this site without permission. name and flask logo are both registered trademarks of, LLC. This site is intended for informational purposes only and not to provide medical advice.