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What is Beta-Sitosterol?

Scientific Name: Stanol Other Names: 24-alpha-ethylcholestanol, 3-beta,5-alpha-stigmastan-3-ol, Beta-sitostanol, Fucostanol, Phytostanol, Plant Stanol, Plant Stanol Esters, Stigmastanol

Health benefits of beta-sitosterol:br> Stanol is taken to help prevent heart disease by lowering total cholesterol and LDL cholesterol, the "bad" types of cholesterol that contribute to heart disease. It does not have a negative effect on HDL cholesterol, the "good" type of cholesterol that helps to protect against heart disease. Stanol can be used by itself or in combination with a low-fat diet and/or cholesterol-lowering drugs such as HMG-CoA reductase inhibitors, commonly called "statins". Some recent study results may show that long-term use of stanol may also help slightly to maintain the flexibility of blood vessels.

When should I be careful taking it?
Because no studies were done in pregnant or breast-feeding women, little is known about how stanol might affect a developing fetus or an infant. Therefore, high use of stanol is not recommended during pregnancy or breastfeeding.

What side effects should I watch for?
No clinically significant side effects have been reported from clinical studies or from general use in Finland, where foods containing stanol have been available since 1995. However, some participants in clinical studies of stanol experienced diarrhea.

What interactions should I watch for?
No interactions have been identified between stanol and prescription drugs, non-prescription drugs, other herbal products, or foods. However, stanol may have interactions that are not yet known. Individuals who experience unexplained side effects while taking stanol should stop taking it and call a doctor or pharmacist.

Taking stanol with cholesterol-lowering drugs (such as lovastatin, pravastatin, or simvastatin) or with dietary supplements (such as garlic, niacin, or oat bran) that also reduce cholesterol may result in a lower cholesterol level than would be achieved with either alone.

Some interactions between herbal products and medications can be more severe than others. The best way for you to avoid harmful interactions is to tell your doctor and/or pharmacist what medications you are currently taking, including any over-the-counter products, vitamins, and herbals. For specific information on how stanol interacts with drugs, other herbals, and foods and the severity of those interactions.

Should I take it?
Although plants do not contain cholesterol, they produce plant sterols, which have a structure very similar to cholesterol. Stanol is a plant sterol that is found in some tree oils (such as pine) and in some vegetable oils (such as canola and soy). Because stanol is not absorbed in the same way that cholesterol is, stanol interferes with the body's use of cholesterol--whether the cholesterol is produced by the body or eaten in foods.

When a modified form of stanol is taken by mouth, it blocks some of the spaces that cholesterol usually occupies in cells. Stanol may also affect the breakdown of cholesterol in the intestines. As a result of both effects, more cholesterol leaves the body and less is available to be absorbed.

Dosage and Administration:
Originally included only in butter substitutes, stanol is now used in many dairy products (cheese, milk, and yogurt) and in other foods such as salad dressings and snack bars. Although stanol-based foods have been available in Finland and other Scandinavian countries for over 10 years, they were introduced in the U.S. more recently. Foods that may provide exceptional health benefits are often called "functional foods" or "nutraceuticals". Capsules and tablets containing stanol are also available.

In clinical studies, participants with high cholesterol--including children younger than 2 years of age--took stanol doses ranging from 800 mg (0.8 gram) to 4000 mg (4 grams) daily. The results from the higher doses, however, were no better than doses of about 2000 mg (2 grams) per day for adults or about 1500 mg (1.5 grams) per day for children. No significant benefits were seen for children with normal cholesterol levels.

The time of day that doses were taken and the number of doses per day did not seem to have any significant bearing on the effectiveness of stanol. In studies, individuals who took one large dose per day were equally as likely to show beneficial changes in cholesterol levels as those who took smaller amounts of stanol two times or three times a day. About 12% of study participants did not show a response to stanol, but the average reduction in cholesterol from stanol alone was 10% to 15%. By comparison, diet changes typically lower cholesterol levels by about 10% and statin-type drugs generally lower LDL cholesterol by 20% to 45%.

Stanol takes 2 weeks to 3 weeks of daily use to reach its peak effectiveness. Clinical trials lasted one year with adults and 3 months with children, but the use of stanol products has been tracked for as long as 5 years in some individuals.

Stanol is used to lower "bad" total and LDL cholesterol levels and to prevent heart disease.

Pregnant women and women who are breastfeeding should avoid using high amounts of stanol because little is known about stanol's effects on developing babies or nursing infants. Children should not use stanol for longer than 3 months unless a doctor supervises such use.

Side Effects:
Diarrhea may be caused by stanol.

No negative interactions have been attributed to the use of stanol. It may, however, increase the effectiveness of a low-cholesterol diet and cholesterol-lowering medications.

Source Naturals Beta Sitosterol

Enzymatic's Cholesterol Shield

Source Naturals Beta Sitosterol 90Tabs (OUT OF STOCK)
Source Naturals Mega Strength Beta Sitosterol 60Tabs
Source Naturals Beta Sitosterol 180Tabs
Pure Encap's Beta-sitosterol 90Vcaps
Pure Encap's Beta-sitosterol 270Vcaps
Pure Encap Beta-sitosterol 90Vcaps
Pharmax Beta Sitosterol 60 caps
Pure Encap Beta-sitosterol 270Vcaps
Natrol's Beta Sitosterl 300mg 60Tabs
Metagenics Meta Sitosterol 2.0 90 Tabs
Douglas Lab's Betaine Plus 100Caps
Priority One Vitamin's Beta Glucan 500 mg 100 cap
Chisolm Biological Lab's Beta Max 500 mg 60 caps
Y.S. Super Enriched Honey: 16,000mg Bee Pollen 11.4oz (10)
Source Naturals Choles-Responseô 30Tabs
Source Naturals Policosanal Cholesterol Complex 30Tabs
Y.S. Royal Jelly Super Strength Softgels 500mg 30Sg (724)
Source Naturals Cholestrexģ 90Tabs
Jarrow Saw Palmetto 320mg 60Sg
Solaray's Nettle Root Extract 300mg 60Caps
Vibrant Health's A Man's Zinc 60 Veg Caps
Futurebiotics Pressure Lo 90Tabs
Source Naturals Prosta-Responseô 45Tabs
Phyto Therapy's Choles-Terol Control Rx 60Sg
Irwin Naturals Less Stress Weight Control 75Tabs
Enzymatic's Super Saw Palmetto 60Sg
Phyto Therapy's Prostate Control 60Sg
TwinLab's Male Fuel 60Caps
Y.S. Royal Jelly Super Strength Softgels 500mg 60Sg (725)
Enzymatic's Prostate Advantage 60Sg
Y.S. Royal Jelly W/ Korean Ginseng Eleuthero 65Caps (7K)
Irwin Naturals Prosta Strong 90Tabs
Y.S. Royal Rush Energzing Drink Mix W/ Royal Jelly, Bee Pollen & Propolis 5oz (7B)
Vibrant Health's Cholesterol Blocker Version 2.1 Vanilla (Formely Cholest III) 60Chew Tabs
Source Naturals Choles-Responseô 60Tabs
Jarrow Sawpalmetto 320mg 120Sg
Source Naturals Policosanal Cholesterol Complex 60Tabs
Source Naturals Cholestrexģ 180Tabs
BlueBonnet Plant Sterols 500mg 60Vcaps
Y.S. Royal Jelly 2,000mg 100% Pure 35Caps (7H3)
Progressive Lab's Cats Claw 500 mg 60 vcaps
Progressive Lab's Phytosterol Complex 90 vcaps
Y.S. Royal Rush Energzing Drink Mix W/ R.J., Bee Pollen & Propolis 11oz (7A)
Life Link's Cholesstat (mixed) 60Caps
Michael's Testosterone Factors 60Tabs
Premier One's Raw Yohimbe 60Caps
Source Naturals Prosta-Responseô 90Tabs
Enzymatic's Masculex 60Sg
Enzymatic's Prostate Advantage 120Sg
Futurebiotics Cholestrol Balance 90 CAP
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Source Naturals Policosanal Cholesterol Complex 90Tabs
Y.S. Royal Jelly Mega Strength 1000mg 60Sg (728)
Source Naturals Cholestrexģ 270Tabs
Enzymatic's Super Saw Palmetto 120Sg
BlueBonnet Plant Sterols 500mg 90Vcaps
TwinLab's Male Fuel 120Caps
Karuna Corporation's ProStat Plus 60 caps
Futurebiotics Pressure-Lo 270Tabs
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