My family has always had high cholesterol—both on my Mom’s side and my Dad’s side. When I was 16, I got my cholesterol tested, because my doctors were well aware that I was at risk.
Several days after they drew my blood, I got a call saying that it topped in at 315! My parents were terrified, and my doctor demanded that I get on Lipitor immediately. I was hesitant, and decided that there must be a way to fix it naturally.
So I told my parents and my doctor that they would have to wait—all I wanted was 3 months, to see how much of an impact a change in lifestyle could have. They agreed, however reluctantly, under the condition that if my cholesterol was still above 250 after this little “experiment,” that I would get on Lipitor.
I spent the next several days researching ways to lower cholesterol naturally and scouring through dozens of articles and peer reviewed studies on various health blogs. After all was said and done, I developed a plan and took action.
3 months later I got my cholesterol tested again, and my doctor was shocked to see that it’d dropped 140 points—naturally! She couldn’t believe it; she’d never seen anything like it. I, of course, wasn’t very surprised, because I already had an intuitive understanding of the power of natural medicine.
For anyone trying to lower their cholesterol naturally, here’s the 4 step plan that I used to do so.
1. Take 2400mg of Red Yeast Rice per Day
After doing some research, one of the first things that I stumbled upon was the efficacy of red yeast rice at decreasing LDL cholesterol levels and increasing HDL levels.
The history of red yeast rice goes back thousands of years—the ancient Chinese medicine men were very aware of its acute ability to increase cardiovascular health, although I’m sure they understood it in more energetic/holistic terms.
The reason for red yeast rice’s effectiveness is due to a little nutrient known as monacolin K, which is the same stuff that they use to make Mevacor. Why pay a pharmaceutical company to create some pill in a lab, when you can just take the ingredient in the form that nature intended?
There’s a large body of evidence supporting the fact that red yeast rice decreases LDL cholesterol levels and increases HDL cholesterol levels. From studies conducted at UCLA, to the American Heart Association’s official verdict, it’s very clear that red yeast rice is beneficial for your cholesterol levels.
2. Consume Plant Sterols Daily
This is the exact stuff that I took when I did my 3 month cholesterol lowering experiment—in fact, I still take it today (along with everything else in this article). The reason why this stuff works so well is because it’s what they make Lipitor out of.
Ever notice how 90% of pharmaceutical drugs are just extracts from regular plants? Big Pharma companies like Bayer find some natural ingredient that works wonders, then synthesize it in a lab, patent it, and give it some crazy name to make you think that you’re taking some scientifically advanced drug.
It’s just a chemical version of what’s natural! You don’t need to buy Statins, when you can just buy the stuff they make Statins out of—plant sterols.
When I first started taking 4 pills of this stuff a day, I actually noticed a difference in how I felt within a week. It was almost like I felt less “sickly,” if that makes sense.
I had more energy, I didn’t get light-headed or tired as easily as I did before, and I just felt better overall. It was like my body was running at a higher level—I attribute this to my cholesterol levels lowering almost immediately.
Don’t just take my word for it, though—a meta-analysis of multiple different studies has concluded that consuming plant sterols is a very effective way to combat high LDL levels of cholesterol.
3. 500mg Niacin Per Day
Taking niacin is not only good for your cholesterol levels, but your overall cardiovascular health. The reason why is because it dilates your blood vessels, which “cleans them out,” so to speak.
Niacin widens your blood vessels so that all of those secluded, little capillaries, can get more fresh blood, nutrients, and oxygen to the various cells surrounding them. One added benefit of this, is overall lower cholesterol levels.
According to Mayo Clinic, one of the most prestigious medical organizations in the world, Niacin has been shown to increase levels of good cholesterol. Just taking niacin alone is enough to improve your cholesterol levels, but when taken in conjunction with red yeast rice and plant sterols, it takes things to a whole new level.
But the benefits don’t just stop there—niacin has also been shown to be great for:
- Your nervous system
- Your energy levels
- Your digestive system
- Skin, hair, and eyes
Be careful though—if you’re not used to taking high doses of niacin, you can get a pretty intense flush; this is all of the little capillaries throughout your body increasing, and is nothing to worry about (although it can freak some people out).
The way that I overcame this annoying tingly flush was by simply taking half of a pill in the morning and half at lunch. Problem solved.
4. Intermittent Fasting
In addition to being a phenomenal way to shred fat, intermittent fasting has also been shown to help improve cholesterol levels. There’s multiple ways to do intermittent fasting, but the most common is the 8-hour fast.
For this method, you’ll wake up at your normal time, and simply fast for 8 hours. Then, after 8 hours, you can eat to your heart’s content (healthy food, though, of course). This may take some getting used to, but once your body adjusts it feels great.
One of the biggest obstacles that I faced when trying to intermittent fast was my hunger—I could make it for 3 hours, or maybe 4 without getting too hungry, but beyond this it was impossible for me to focus.
That’s when I read that consuming a cup or two of black coffee is a great way to overcome this, for several reasons:
- It blunts hunger, making your fast easier
- It speeds up metabolism, making burning fat even easier
- It enhances focus, leading to more productivity.
Once I started drinking a cup of coffee around the 3 hour mark into my fast, I found that intermittent fasting became far easier.
Putting it All Together
Just doing a single one of the steps here will lower your cholesterol, but when you do them all together you’ll get phenomenal results. As I said, my cholesterol was a whopping 315 before I started this routine—now it hovers around 175.
I’ve found that I can maintain my current level of cholesterol health by simply halving the doses. Now, I only take:
- 1200mg red yeast rice
- 2 pills of plant sterols
- 250mg niacin
It’s been working for the past 3-4 years, and I don’t expect this to change anytime soon. I still do intermittent fasting regularly, although on days that I work out, this changes.
If you’re struggling with cholesterol (as I was), I highly recommend that you do this routine—it’s saved me a massive amount of money, and it’s far healthier than taking Statins. If you have any questions, let me know. I’ll be browsing the comments section once this article posts.