IRVING, TEXAS—The grocery store, aisle after aisle of foods, a confusing array of products and ingredients, but now researchers say that foods fortified with plant sterols can produce amazing results. Dr. Rebecca Reeves says they can be amazingly healthful.
"There are so many foods that contain a product called plant sterols that can lower your cholesterol by ten to fifteen percent." Says. Dr. Reeves.
Dr. Reeves is a registered dietician at the Baylor College of Medicine in Houston. She says a growing number of everyday staples like milk, orange juice and cheese have plant sterols added. Many consumers, including Marlena Rodriguez have never heard of plant sterols which is extracted from soy bean oil. Like most shoppers, she buys the same items and brands every time she shops. She points to her english muffins and says tries to be healthy.
"I do, I just grabbed these, I was looking at the regular fiber or double fiber as well." Says Marlena.
Dr. Reeves scanned Marlena's shopping cart and found if she bought a different brand of orange juice and milk, her heart may be healthier.
"And by having this as milk it can lower your cholesterol by about ten percent if you drink at least two glasses and you know how everyone is supposed to drinking milk, especially us women." Says Dr. Reeves.
At 29, Marlena isn't immune to high cholesterol and says she'll take the information to heart.
"I'm really excited, it's good to know that something that simple as orange juice and milk, that by drinking that particular product that's inside of these products makes a difference as far as cholesterol." Says Marlena.
Dr. Reeves says people need between 800 and 2,000 milligrams of plant sterols everyday and they may be food for though for those with slightly elevated cholesterol levels.
"Oh, that's the time I would immediately start looking at these foods containing plant sterols." Says Dr. Reeves.
As for Marlena, cholesterol or no cholesterol, she'll probably make the switch.
"As far as your age goes, I know you never know, the more healthier we are, the better off we are in years to come.'