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Plant sterols lower cholesterol levels

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Plant sterols are effective in lowering cholesterol and triglyceride levels as part of positive diet and lifestyle changes, research has shown.

Analysis of data from 12 clinical trials, published in the European Journal of Nutrition, indicated that an intake of around 2 grams of plant sterols a day is associated with a 6 per cent reduction in triglyceride levels.

Triglycerides are increasingly recognised as a risk factor for CHD. Meanwhile, a separate study published in PLoS One researched the effect of greater plant sterol consumption on low-density lipoprotein (LDL) and the carotid intima-media thickness.

Higher intake subjects in the study, who consumed 447 mg per day, were associated with lower serum total and LDL in men and women, than subjects who had a lower intake.

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