Dietary changes may lower cholesterol better than statins

On its website, ABC News/Good Morning America reports that dietary changes may “do a better job” than taking statins to lower cholesterol. In a study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, researchers “followed 345 people with high cholesterol who were placed on one of two vegetarian, low-cholesterol diets for six months.”

Those in the “low-saturated-fat diet … were told simply to eat low-fat dairy and get more fruits and vegetables into their meals.”

The second group incorporated “specific cholesterol-lowering foods into their meals,” such as “soy proteins, nuts, oats, peas, and beans. That group saw a drop in cholesterol three times higher than the group on the regular low-saturated-fat diet, and both diets proved to be at least as successful as early trials of statins.”

Once again, good nutrition habits are critical in both preventing and treating cardiovascular disease. And I, for one, usually will not prescribe a statin without first having my patients visit with a Registered Dietician to discuss medical nutrition therapy first.

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