The problem of high cholesterol has been very common in any society. People start to concern about their cholesterol level and what diets they take in order to prevent the risk of cardiovascular diseases that is triggered by high cholesterol and triglycerides amount in blood. Some people are prescribed statins, drugs functioning to lower cholesterol level by inhibiting its production in the liver. However, statins is reported to have a significant effect on the muscle, causing severe muscle spasms which affect daily activities. Red yeast rice is sold in the form of pills as an alternative for muscle spasm-causing statins.
What is red yeast rice?
Red yeast rice is a product of yeast which is grown in rice. In natural cooking, red yeast rice is used as a natural coloring for Pecking duck menu, giving the dish a deep-red color. In suppressing cholesterol level, red yeast rice is known to possess similar effects with those medicines called statins. Statins is medications which is taken for lowering cholesterol level. It works by suppressing the work of the liver and thus, decrease the amount of produced cholesterol. Red yeast rice has this property and thus, is manufactured as the pills for lowering cholesterol level.
How red yeast rice pills work
One important ingredient contained by red yeast rice is called monacolin K and known widely as lovastatin. This substance, which is similar to the one contained by cholesterol-lowering statin medications work as a cholesterol-lowering agent in the same methods with the medications. It carefully controls temperature and growing conditions to increase the concentration of chemicals which inhibit the production of cholesterol. Hence, red yeast rice pills will work effectively when taken in the night. Before known as a cholesterol-controlling pills, red rice yeast pills is known as an over-counter dietary supplement. However, some studies found out that this supplement works for lowering cholesterol level and thus, inhibiting heart diseases.
Possible side effects of red yeast rice pills
Although red yeast rice pills is considered more natural than cholesterol-lowering statins, it doesn’t mean that no side effects will be triggered by its consumption. Instead, there are some effects of taking red yeast rice pills in daily basis for lowering cholesterol level, such as:
Some people report allergic reactions they get from consuming red yeast rice pills. This is quite possible, because there are no strict standards used in manufacturing the pills. Hence, some manufacturers produce the pills using devices used with some other chemical substances that may trigger allergic reactions.
Upset stomach and diarrhea
Despite being natural, consumption of red yeast rice pills may initially trigger upset stomach and may lead to severe diarrhea. Stop consumption if you experience dehydration occurring from continuous diarrhea.
Dizziness and headache
There is no clear information about perfect dosage in consuming red yeast rice pills for lowering cholesterol. Hence, some people may not tolerate certain dosage which works great with some others. Hence, dizziness, weak sensation, nausea, and headache may occur as a side effect of this unclear dosage instruction.
Some chemicals used with red yeast rice in the pills might contribute to urinating problem. The supplement may decrease the urinating frequency and can even lead to the absence of urinating urge in a whole day. Continuous consumptions also lead to dark-colored urine, which can be an indication of improper kidney function.
Red yeast rice pills which is consumed for lowering cholesterol is the one containing lovastatin—the same substance found in cholesterol-lowering statins. Hence, this supplement may trigger similar side effects with the statins, such as unexplained muscle pains.
As a cholesterol-lowering supplement, red yeast rice pills has an impact to the liver—the organ where cholesterol is produced. Long-time consumptions, which is not accompanied by healthy diets and lifestyle—daily exercises will lead into inhibited liver work. Eventually this will be a health problem, which causes the liver to hurt. Hence, liver injury is not uncommon with they who consume red yeast rice pills in high daily dosage for a long period. Healthier diets and exercises are somehow recommended rather than cholesterol-lowering pills which may possess harmful side effects.