Plant sterols, also known as phytosterols, are abundant in the cell membrane of plants. They are structurally similar to human cholesterol and block the absorption of cholesterol in the body, encouraging healthy eating habits. Phytosterols are added in the diet when you wish to lower your bad cholesterol even more after inculcating healthy eating habits in your life i-e to add monosaturated and polyunsaturated fats in your diet than Trans and saturated ones.
When consumed, plant sterols compete with the cholesterol absorption in our digestive system because of their structural similarity to cholesterol. By creating this blockage, they, in turn, reduce the cholesterol level in the blood. For a healthy heart and body, a specific amount of stanol esters are recommending to decrease the total cholesterol level by 10% and bad cholesterol by 14%. It is clinically prove too effective to take phytosterols that The National Cholesterol Education Program recommends its 2-gram consumption daily if you have high cholesterol. Although they block cholesterol consumption, they do not affect the absorption of vitamins and nutrients extracted from food in our bodies.
Benefits of Plant Sterol:
- Plant sterol reduces the risk of a heart attack in men by 29%, but it is not prove that much beneficial in women.
- Taking 2 grams of phytosterols daily reduces the cholesterol level in people suffering from metabolic syndrome.
- Although it is not prove beneficial in fat loss, it efficiently reduces the LDL cholesterol in the body by 10-14%
- Consuming it daily reduces the chances of gastric cancer.
- Taking plant sterol in your daily life will make you less vulnerable to colon and rectal cancer.
- Cancer compared to women who eat fewer plant sterols. But men who eat more plant sterols might have a lower risk of rectal cancer than men who eat fewer plant sterols.
- Using it along a low-fat diet is highly effective for your heart health.
For people suffering from heart diseases, 3.4g of plant sterol is recommending along with a low-fat diet. For children aged 6-16 years, having hypercholesterolemia, it is recommending to take 1.6-2.3g of plant sterol daily. And for adults, suffering from hypercholesterolemia recommended dose is 2-3 daily, or as prescribed by your dietitian.