Dr. Tommy

Concierge Medicine Tampa Bay


How I went from skeptic to believer.
Last year I bit the bullet and went to the doctor. Actually, I went to my exam room and had Tracy, my nurse, draw the physical labs. I was going to have a friend come in my office and do the exam because there is no way I am waiting in an waiting room somewhere here in Wesley Chapel. I have a friend Radley Griffin, who does concierge medicine, but he is in south Tampa, so I decided to do it myself.

Two days later the labs come back and lo and behold, I have elevated cholesterol. No surprise to me since I have a family history, but still it was yet another erosion of youth. So when I had that diagnosis, I sought the treatment I never thought I would, red yeast rice. I say that because I have had many patients come in to my office, get the same diagnosis, and say "Well I want to start red yeast rice then." I would then advise them that they could but it is basically the same as a weak statin (what you typically prescribe for cholesterol). They would say, "Yeah, but its natural" and so I would say okay let's try it and check again in 2 months. Usually on recheck the cholesterol was the same or higher.

So I have Xymogen supplements in my office and have had good success with the fish oil product reducing triglycerides, so I figured, I'll try the red yeast rice and see what happens. My LDL went from 164 to 135 on one tab a day. I took the red yeast rice for about 10 weeks before rechecking. I have since bumped the dose to 2 tabs a day. We'll see where it goes from there. But I can say that I am now a believer in red yeast rice, at least the Xymogen brand.

Interestingly, the FDA has ruled that the manufacturers of red yeast rice are not allowed to make the claim that the supplement 'lowers cholesterol' for regulatory reasons.

Red Yeast Rice