Red Yeast Rice is a traditional Chinese medicine that possesses antioxidant properties providing plant sterols to help maintain cholesterol levels. It may increase your healthy, HDL cholesterol and may lower your bad, LDL cholesterol.
One study showed that taking Red Yeast Rice for twelve weeks at 2.4 grams/day reduced LDL levels by 22% and total cholesterol by 16%.
Another study showed that taking Red Yeast Rice for just eight weeks at 1.2 grams/day lowered LDL levels by 26%.
These studies were small and possibly not long enough to show long-term effects.
It is considered helpful to take Coenzyme Q10 with this formula.
Red Yeast Rice has been extracted from rice, that was fermented with Monascus purpureus (a type of yeast). It has been used as a food coloring, additive and preservative.
An important ingredient in Red Yeast Rice is monacolin K, also known as lovastatin which is the active ingredient in the prescription drug Mevacor.
Although Red Yeast Rice is a traditional remedy that helps lower cholesterol, the pharmaceutical manufacturer of Mevacor states that they own the rights to the ingredient lovastatin. In 2007, the FDA attempted to control the sale of Red Yeast Rice in the US, yet many still manage to purchase it from other countries or the internet.