Red Yeast Rice: Friend Or Foe?

Red Yeast Rice is formed after a yeast (MonascasPurpureus) grows on white rice, and has been used by the Chinese as an Asian form of medication for centuries.

It is widely used today, both as a food as well as a medicine as it has been found to reduce cholesterol considerably and treats patients with heart disease. It is used as food colouring, additive, and preservative as well.

High cholesterol leading to heart diseases is one of the most common diseases for people worldwide. Red yeast rice can be one of the most inexpensive and natural remedies to add to your diet if you are suffering from high cholesterol. It can be taken both in tablet and capsule form but make sure you have consulted with your health specialist before doing so.

Instead of taking medicated supplements orally, red yeast rice is often considered a good natural alternative; it contains the same compound called monacolin K as found in cholesterol-reducing supplements.

Even though the benefits of red yeast rice are many, there are certain red yeast rice dangers associated with red yeast rice that should be taken into consideration. It may cause gas, heartache, mild headache, and even an upset stomach. It contains lovastatin, which elevates muscle and liver enzymes that lead to muscle and liver problems.

You should refrain from taking red yeast rice if you have other diseases in your body such as liver disease, kidney disease and so on. If you are pregnant or breastfeeding, negative results may occur in your body.

Red yeast rice may react with any other supplements/medications you are currently taking. Check whether you are allergic to fungus or yeast before taking it, or it may show some negative side reactions.

Red yeast rice must be taken in isolation from few interactions in your body or it might cause fatal results, for example, if you take alcohol and red yeast rice, the chances of your liver getting damaged are increased.

Eating grapefruit alongside red yeast rice will enhance the harmful side of the supplement. Overall if you take any other form of medication along with red yeast rice, make sure you have consulted with your doctor beforehand.

Extensive studies of red yeast rice have not been done which still creates doubts about its risks and benefits. Its dosing, long-term side effects, and other factors are still unclear even to experts. It is not safe for everyone and thus requires a thorough consultation before anybody introduces it into their diet.