Diets and drugs that lower the serum cholesterol level are believed to be highly desirable as one means of preventing atherosclerosis. G. C. Chiu1 has made a comprehensive review of the mode of action of many of the cholesterol-lowering chemical agents, which have been extensively studied clinically. They include unsaturated fats, sitosterol, niacin, thyroid hormones and their analogues, and triparanol.
A shift from an unprescribed mixed diet to a rice diet which is free of cholesterol and fats causes a sharp fall in the serum cholesterol, but this is a monotonous diet, and it is hard to adhere to for any length of time. The use of relatively unsaturated fats such as corn, safflower, cottonseed, peanut, or fish oils also reduces the serum cholesterol. In order to obtain a significant lowering of the concentration, however, at least 50% of the saturated fats (butter, lard, coconut oil, or hydrogenated vegetable
CHOLESTEROL-LOWERING AGENTS. JAMA. 1961;178(12):1158–1159. doi:10.1001/jama.1961.03040510034011