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Oatmeal with Cinnamon Helps Control Cholesterol Without Drugs

A regular breakfast of oatmeal with cinnamon can help control total cholesterol levels, LDL cholesterol and triglycerides while raising HDL cholesterol.

Many people would like to know how they can lower their cholesterol without medication. Sometimes a surprisingly simple strategy can be helpful. When the doctor mentions “diet and exercise,” she may not specify oatmeal with cinnamon for breakfast on a regular basis. This reader found through experimenting that this breakfast can make a big dent in high cholesterol.

Q. In your column a person reported that his cholesterol had dropped significantly after eating oatmeal with 1/4 teaspoon of cinnamon each morning. This caught my eye, since my cholesterol without medication was around 275. With medication it was 226.

I started eating oatmeal with cinnamon each morning. After about three months, my cholesterol dropped to 185. My doctor took me off the medication and my cholesterol has stayed below 200. A friend who tried this method told me this past week that her cholesterol has also dropped significantly.

Evidence for Oatmeal with Cinnamon to Lower Cholesterol Levels

A. A daily helping of oatmeal can help lower total cholesterol, presumably due to the action of the soluble fiber in the oats (Applied Physiology, Nutrition and Metabolism, June, 2015).

Adding cinnamon to the mix might help even more. Consuming cinnamon has been shown to lower fasting blood sugar, total cholesterol, LDL and triglycerides, while raising beneficial HDL cholesterol (Annals of Family Medicine, Sep-Oct. 2013).  We have not seen controlled trials comparing oatmeal with cinnamon to other sorts of breakfast food, but we suspect that it would do pretty well.

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About the Author
Joe Graedon is a pharmacologist who has dedicated his career to making drug information understandable to consumers. His best-selling book, The People’s Pharmacy, was published in 1976 and led to a syndicated newspaper column, syndicated public radio show and web site. In 2006, Long Island University awarded him an honorary doctorate as “one of the country's leading drug experts for the consumer.”.
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