Pharmacology of Nutraceuticals with Lipid Lowering Properties

  • Andrea PoliEmail author
  • Francesco Visioli
Review Article
Part of the following topical collections:
  1. Nutraceuticals in Hypertension & Cardiovascular Prevention


Lowering total and, in particular, LDL cholesterol reduces cardiovascular risk and clinical events. Cholesterol-lowering strategies are manifold. Better diets and positive lifestyle changes are the foremost approach; the use of functional foods, of food supplements/nutraceuticals, and pharmacological treatment must be considered in patients with increasing lipid abnormalities and or increasing cardiovascular risk. Here, we briefly review the most frequently occurring cholesterol-lowering substances found in functional foods or nutraceuticals, i.e. plant sterols and stanols, monacolin K found in red yeast rice, berberine and beta-glucans. We intentionally use a colloquial style to convey our message, which physicians can forward to their patients. We underscore that these preparations are effective either alone or in combination, but that patients should use them after careful discussion with primary care physicians or specialists.


Cholesterol Nutraceuticals Functional foods Cardiovascular disease Low density lipoprotein 



Supported in part by POR FESR 2014–2020 (to FV).

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of interest

AP reports speaking fees from MSD and Errekappa. FV reports speaking fees from INDENA s.p.a.


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Copyright information

© Italian Society of Hypertension 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Nutrition Foundation of ItalyMilanItaly
  2. 2.Department of Molecular MedicineUniversity of PadovaPaduaItaly
  3. 3.IMDEA-Food, CEI UAM+CSICMadridSpain

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