What are plant sterols?
Plant sterols are in the foods we eat every day, including fruits, vegetables, vegetable oils, nuts and legumes. If we consume enough plant sterols in our diet, our blood cholesterol levels can decrease*. It is challenging to get enough plant sterols through diet alone, which is why a dietary supplement or food with added plant sterols is necessary to achieve the desired cholesterol reduction. In fact, the US FDA allows manufacturers of products containing a certain level of plant sterols to make claims related to cholesterol and heart disease reduction, if these products are also low in saturated fat and cholesterol.
How do plant sterols work?
The liver makes most of the cholesterol in our bodies and releases it into the intestine to aid with digestion. Further down in the intestine, cholesterol is reabsorbed back into the bloodstream and returned to the liver. Similar to soluble fiber, plant sterols help block this reabsorption of cholesterol in the intestine. This can reduce LDL (bad) cholesterol by 5-15% while not affecting HDL (good) cholesterol or triglycerides. Plant sterols have been shown to reduce blood cholesterol levels in approximately 4-6 weeks*.
Do your products contain soy?
Prior to July 2020, Piper Biosciences used plant sterols that were mainly derived from soy. Starting July 2020, we are using plant sterols derived from pine. Please check the Supplement Facts box on our product for further information.
Gummies are an ideal means to improve adherence to the product. Other plant sterol products are available but adherence can suffer because people may have a hard time swallowing large pills.
My doctor is not familiar with plant sterols. What should I do?
We recommend referring your doctor to the "Healthcare Provider" link on the top of this page. This section of our site summarizes the existing scientific literature about plant sterols.
Individual results may vary. Supplementation with plant sterol esters typically reduces cholesterol by 5-15% within several weeks. Adding other lifestyle changes, including a heart healthy diet, can reduce cholesterol by up to 30%. Repeat lipid testing is recommended.