Red yeast rice is the product of yeast (Monascus purpureus ) grown on rice, and is served as a dietary staple in some Asian countries. It contains several compounds collectively known as monacolins, substances known to inhibit cholesterol synthesis. One of these, "monacolin K," is a potent inhibitor of HMG CoA reductase, and is also known as mevinolin or lovastatin (Mevacor, a drug produced by Merck & Co., Inc).
Red yeast rice extract has been sold as a natural cholesterol lowering agent in over the counter supplements, such as Cholestin TM (Pharmanex, Inc). However, there has been legal and industrial dispute as to whether red yeast rice is a drug or a dietary supplement, involving the manufacturer, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), and the pharmaceutical industry (particularly producers of HMG CoA reductase inhibitor prescription drugs or "statins").
|Used For||Diet/ Weight Loss, Nutrition|