Cholesterol supplement under fire
Offer a safe and inexpensive alternative to a risky and expensive drug, and watch how fast they beat down your door.
I'm not talking about customers -- I'm referring to the feds, doctors, mainstream researchers and anyone else with a stake in keeping the system exactly as it is.
Researchers warn against red yeast rice
Just look at the latest study on red yeast rice: Researchers admit it's a safe and effective way to lower LDL cholesterol levels... but urge people to stay away from it anyway.
I actually agree with them -- but for a different reason, and I'll tell you why after I run their study through my rice cooker.
Scientists tested a dozen brands of red yeast rice supplements and found wildly inconsistent doses of the active ingredient, cholesterol-lowering monacolin.
But there's a reason for that -- and it's one of the most bizarre and convoluted chapters in the history of supplements.
Natural monacolin is chemically identical to the patent-protected synthetic drug lovastatin. In fact, as far as the FDA is concerned, monacolin IS lovastatin -- and the feds seem to believe that Mother Nature has infringed on Big Pharma's patent.
Absurd? Of course it is. But after a series of bans and court cases, supplement makers have figured out the only way to sell red yeast rice is to pretend the monacolin isn't there.
They can't even mention it on the label. And so you get what the researchers found: Inconsistent doses.
The new study also found that four of the 12 red yeast rice supplements tested contained citrinin, a fungus linked to kidney problems in animals.
And that leads us to this week's twisted irony... because while the researchers are warning people away from red yeast rice due to fungal contamination, the feds are telling people to keep taking the statin drug Lipitor despite the fact that some lots may have been contaminated with an antifungal chemical.
Confused? Don't be. I'm going to make this real simple now -- because while red yeast rice from a trusted source may be a much better option than statin meds, the simple fact of the matter is you don't need either.
People fret over their cholesterol levels as if they're credit scores, but, in reality, it's a non-issue. If your total cholesterol is between 200 and 300, don't waste another moment worrying about it -- and if it falls below that, your cholesterol is dangerously low.
About the author
William Campbell Douglass I.I., M.D. has been called "the conscience of modern medicine."
You can sign up for his "Daily Dose" at DouglassReport.com.