6 Herbs and Supplements That Lower Cholesterol Naturally

author avatar Dr. Eric Berg 01/27/2024

High levels of low-density lipoprotein, generally known as bad cholesterol, have been implicated in atherosclerosis, and maintaining balanced blood cholesterol levels can reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease.

Here are six supplements and herbs to lower cholesterol levels and discover why elevated cholesterol may be caused by a high-carb diet. 

Elevated cholesterol illustration

What causes high cholesterol?

Cholesterol is a waxy, fat-like substance that plays an important role in building cell membranes, bile production, and vitamin D synthesis. 

Because cholesterol is a lipid, it’s not water-soluble and has to be carried through the bloodstream by specialized transport proteins, including low-density lipoprotein (LDL cholesterol) and high-density lipoprotein (HDL cholesterol).  

There remains a common misconception that total cholesterol levels can predict the risk of heart disease. However, this has long been refuted, and whether cholesterol impacts cardiovascular health depends on the type of lipoprotein it’s bound to.        

Certain types of LDL cholesterol can deposit within the walls of arteries, which increases the risk of restricted blood vessels and atherosclerosis, two primary cardiovascular risk factors.

In contrast, HDL cholesterol is generally considered the good cholesterol and is associated with a lower risk of arterial plaque formation due to its ability to clear LDL cholesterol from blood vessels.

It’s widely believed that cholesterol-containing foods such as meat, eggs, shellfish, and full-fat dairy products contribute to elevated cholesterol levels. 

However, research published in Nutrients investigated the impact of dietary cholesterol intake on blood lipid levels and concluded, “There is no direct correlation between cholesterol intake and blood cholesterol.”

In fact, evidence suggests that a high-carb diet can increase dangerous cholesterol

The consumption of sugars and carbs triggers the release of insulin, a crucial metabolic hormone that regulates blood sugar levels. 

“Insulin has been found to stimulate cholesterol production in the liver,” says Dr. Berg. “This explains why individuals who regularly consume refined carbs, processed foods, and sugary drinks are more likely to develop elevated cholesterol levels.”

A study published in the Journal of The American College of Nutrition confirms that consuming a high percentage of calories in the form of carbohydrates is associated with elevated LDL and low HDL cholesterol levels.

Watch the video below to discover why elevated total cholesterol levels may not increase your risk of heart disease. 

Best herbs and supplements to lower cholesterol

According to a report published by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), more than 86 million adults in the U.S. have high cholesterol levels, also known as hypercholesterolemia.

Conventional treatment for hypercholesterolemia typically includes cholesterol-lowering medications. However, drugs like statins can have significant side effects, including hormonal imbalances and muscle pain.

Naturally, many people consider taking supplements and herbal products to balance their cholesterol levels. 

Here are six of the best supplements and herbs to reduce cholesterol. 

1. Omega-3 fatty acids 

Omega-3 fats have cardioprotective properties and have been found to reduce the risk of heart disease, high blood pressure, and elevated cholesterol levels. 

Evidence published in Frontiers in Nutrition suggests that supplementation with omega-3 fatty acids such as eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) can stimulate the production of HDL in the liver.

HDL cholesterol can clear potentially harmful LDL cholesterol from blood vessels, which lowers the risk of arterial plaque formation and atherosclerosis. 


2. Red yeast rice 

Red yeast rice extract is a fermented type of rice that contains monacolin K, a fungal by-product that can help regulate how much cholesterol the body produces.  

Monacolin K has effects similar to certain cholesterol-lowering medications as it can inhibit HMG-CoA reductase, a critical enzyme that controls blood cholesterol concentrations.  

3. Probiotics

Probiotics promote gut bacteria diversity, which is linked to balanced cholesterol levels. 

Beneficial gut bacteria influence intestinal cholesterol absorption and are needed to recycle bile salts, which help eliminate excess cholesterol from the body. 

A large review published in Cureus confirms the benefits of probiotic supplementation and concludes, “Probiotics have significant effects on cholesterol levels and have shown a reduction in triglycerides and lower-density lipoprotein (LDL).” 

Turmeric powder and root

4. Turmeric 

Turmeric has incredible health benefits and is an exceptionally rich source of curcumin. This potent polyphenol can help lower LDL levels by downregulating the activity of enzymes involved in cholesterol production.

A study published in Phytotherapy Research found that 12 weeks of turmeric supplementation was associated with a better HDL-to-LDL ratio and significantly improved the participants' overall lipid profile. 

5. Vitamin B3

Vitamin B3, also known as niacin, has been found to influence the metabolism of lipids and cholesterol in liver cells.

Vitamin B3 can help reduce the production of LDL cholesterol and promote healthy cholesterol balance by increasing the number of larger lipoproteins that clear LDL from the bloodstream. 

6. Bile salts 

Bile salts play a critical role in the absorption of dietary fats and facilitate the elimination of cholesterol from the body.

However, individuals with poor gallbladder function, liver disease, malabsorption, or pancreatic disorders are at risk of bile salt deficiency, which can impair the body’s ability to process cholesterol. 

Taking bile salt supplements is an excellent strategy to support optimal cholesterol elimination and promotes the absorption of dietary fats and fat-soluble nutrients. 

Tauroursodeoxycholic acid (TUDCA) is a type of bile acid that has been found especially beneficial for maintaining balanced cholesterol levels due to its ability to increase the solubility of cholesterol, which enhances its excretion and lowers the risk of cholesterol gallstones.

Selection of ketogenic foods

Other natural ways to lower your cholesterol naturally

While some individuals develop elevated cholesterol due to genetic factors, most cases are linked to poor dietary and lifestyle choices. 

Regular physical activity plays a profound role in maintaining metabolic health and supporting balanced cholesterol levels. 

Exercise helps lower LDL cholesterol and is associated with higher HDL concentrations. In addition, staying active can help prevent weight gain and insulin resistance, a metabolic imbalance characterized by elevated insulin levels and amplified cholesterol production.  

Avoiding a diet high in carbs and sugars is another excellent strategy to maintain normal insulin levels, which promotes balanced cholesterol production.  


A nutritious low-carb diet such as Healthy Keto® focuses on nutrient-rich, high-quality foods, including non-GMO organic vegetables, grass-fed beef, full-fat organic dairy and eggs, and wild-caught fish.

This dietary pattern offers plenty of heart-healthy fats, dietary fiber, and essential nutrients, all crucial for promoting cholesterol balance and supporting cardiovascular health.   

You can maximize the health benefits of a low-carb diet for cholesterol balance by combining Healthy Keto with intermittent fasting, a mealtime schedule that cycles between periods of fasting and time-restricted periods of eating. 

A meta-analysis published in Nutrients reviewed several studies investigating the effect of intermittent fasting on lipid levels and concluded that time-restricted eating has consistently been linked to significant reductions in LDL cholesterol levels. 

Fasting helps balance insulin levels and stimulates fat burning, which enhances lipid metabolism in the liver and is linked to lower concentrations of potentially harmful cholesterol. 

A hand flipping a wooden cube

Key takeaways

Some of the best supplements and herbs to lower cholesterol naturally include omega-3 fatty acids, vitamin B3, red yeast rice, turmeric, bile salts, and probiotics. 

In addition, following a nutritious low-carb diet such as Healthy Keto, in combination with intermittent fasting and regular physical activity, benefits heart health and promotes balanced cholesterol levels.


1. What are the best herbs and supplements to lower cholesterol levels?

Turmeric and red yeast extract are herbal remedies that can lower low-density lipoprotein (LDL), also known as the bad cholesterol, and help increase levels of high-density lipoprotein (HDL), which has cardioprotective properties and is often referred to as good cholesterol. 

In addition, supplementation with omega-3 fatty acids, bile salts, probiotics, and vitamin B3 can promote balanced cholesterol levels and lower the risk of heart disease. 

2. What is the best way to lower high cholesterol naturally?

The best way to lower high cholesterol is to follow a low-carb diet, consume plenty of healthy fats, and engage in regular physical activity.

In addition, herbs and supplements such as turmeric, red rice yeast, probiotics, bile salts, and vitamin B3 can support balanced lipid levels and help reduce high cholesterol naturally.  

3. How long does it take to lower your cholesterol?

How long it takes to lower your cholesterol depends on your lipid profile, metabolic health, dietary habits, and activity levels.

However, many individuals have improved cholesterol levels within three to four months of making beneficial lifestyle changes and following a healthy diet.

4. What foods should I eat for high cholesterol?

Probiotic-rich fermented foods and foods high in omega-3 fatty acids, such as oily fish, grass-fed beef, flaxseed oil, and nuts, can help lower LDL cholesterol.

In addition, non-starchy vegetables rich in soluble fiber, such as Brussels sprouts, cauliflower, spinach, and aubergines, can promote the elimination of cholesterol from the body.  

5. Is turmeric good for high cholesterol? 

Yes, turmeric is a great option to lower cholesterol levels naturally.

Turmeric contains curcumin, a potent polyphenol that has been shown to reduce the production of LDL cholesterol and, simultaneously, can stimulate the elimination of excess cholesterol from the body. 

6. What is the best vitamin for lowering cholesterol?

Vitamin B3, also known as niacin, can directly influence cholesterol production in the liver. 

Evidence suggests that vitamin B3 supplementation can lower LDL cholesterol significantly and help increase levels of heart-healthy HDL cholesterol.   


  1. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC9143438/

  2. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1479303/ 

  3. https://www.cdc.gov/cholesterol/facts.htm 

  4. https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fnut.2021.767535/full 

  5. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC10183154/

  6. https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1002/ptr.5197 

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