High Cholesterol - Caution
Niacin antioxidants and statins.
A study showed that statins taken with Niacin (Vitamin B3) significantly increased the good HDL levels but when taken with antioxidants (Vitamins C and E, selenium, beta carotene the benefit was clearly reduced and the cause of the interaction in unknown. There have been some reports that a combination of niacin and a statin drug can cause myopathy, unusual muscle pain and weakness and this may be specifically related to patients with kidney problems. However care should be taken when combining the two. One study showed that as little as 100mg of niacin with statin was enough to raise HDL.
Grapefruit juice is known to slow down the metabolism of many drugs which can lead to an increase in their plasma levels. Also, the effects can last up to 3 days after drinking the juice. There is an interaction with statins.
Statin drugs lower antioxidant Coenzyme Q10 (Ubiquinone) levels at the same time as lowering cholesterol. Ubiquinone is vital cardiovascular function and studies have shown that supplements of CoQ10 combined with statins maintains plasma levels of Co Q10 without changing the statins effect of lowering cholesterol.
The information on the High Cholesterol - Caution page is updated regularly as new studies and publications become available.