Cholesterol Home > Policosanol

Policosanol is a type of supplement that is derived from plant waxes and is claimed to help lower cholesterol. Although it is not exactly known how the supplement works, it is thought to decrease cholesterol production in the liver and increase the breakdown of cholesterol in the body. Possible side effects of policosanol may include insomnia, migraines, and an upset stomach.

What Is Policosanol?

Policosanol is an herbal supplement that consists of fatty alcohol derived from plant waxes. It is often claimed to help lower cholesterol.
(Click Benefits of Policosanol for more information.)

How Does It Work?

It is not exactly clear how policosanol works to lower cholesterol. It is thought that the supplement may decrease the amount of cholesterol produced by the liver and may increase the breakdown of cholesterol in the body.

Is Policosanol Effective?

There is not enough evidence to know for sure if policosanol is effective at treating high cholesterol, and scientific evidence, to date, is not conclusive (see Does Policosanol Work? for more information).

Dosing Information

Because policosanol is a dietary supplement, not a drug, it has not been thoroughly studied. As a result, dosing information has not yet been clearly established.
(Click Policosanol Dosage for more information.)

Policosanol Side Effects

Even though it is a "natural" product, policosanol can cause side effects, such as:
(Click Side Effects of Policosanol to learn more, including potentially serious side effects you should report immediately to your healthcare provider.)
Written by/reviewed by:
Last reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD;
Last updated/reviewed:
List of references (click here):
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