Skip to main content

Red Yeast Rice

Medically reviewed by Drugs.com. Last updated on Jun 30, 2022.

What are other common names?

  • Monascus purpureus
  • Ang-Khak
  • Arroz de Levadura Roja
  • Aspergillaceae
  • Beni-Koji
  • Cholestin
  • Hon-Chi
  • Hong Qu
  • Hongqu
  • Koji
  • Koji Rouge
  • Levure de Riz Rouge
  • Monascus
  • Monascus Purpureus Went
  • Red Fermented Rice
  • Red Mold
  • Red Rice Koji
  • Red Rice Yeast
  • Red Yeast
  • Red Yeast Rice
  • Red Yeast Rice Extract
  • Red-Koji
  • Riz Rouge
  • Rotschimmelreis
  • Xue Zhi Kang
  • XueZhiKang
  • XZK
  • Zhi Tai
  • Zhibituo
  • Zhitai

What is this product used for?

Some red yeast rice products may help to lower cholesterol and triglyceride levels or prevent heart disease.

What are the precautions when taking this product?

  • Always check with your doctor before you use a natural product. Some products may not mix well with drugs or other natural products.

  • This product may interfere with some lab tests. Be sure to talk with your doctor about this and all drugs you are taking.

  • Be sure to tell your doctor that you take this product if you are scheduled for surgery or tests.

  • Do not use this product if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant soon. Use birth control you can trust while taking this product.

  • Do not use this product if you are breastfeeding.

  • Do not take this product with grapefruit. It may increase the risks of side effects.

  • Avoid beer, wine, mixed drinks (alcohol), drugs, herbs, and supplements that may harm the liver while taking this product.

  • Do not take this product if you have had muscle problems caused by drugs that lower cholesterol called “statins.” These are drugs like simvastatin, pravastatin, or atorvastatin.

  • Do not take this product if you are taking the drug cyclosporine, erythromycin, fusidic acid, or gemfibrozil. Side effects of this product may be increased.

  • Do not take this produce if you are taking a protease inhibitor drug. These are drugs like fosamprenavir, glecaprevir, or tipranavir. Side effects of this product may be increased.

  • Take extra care if you are allergic to rice or yeast.

  • Take extra care if you are taking drugs to thin your blood. These are drugs like warfarin.

  • Take extra care and check with your doctor if you have:

    • Heart problems

    • Kidney problems

    • Liver problems

    • High cholesterol

What should I watch for?

  • Upset stomach

  • Heartburn

  • Feeling dizzy

  • Low appetite

  • Bloating

When do I need to call the doctor?

  • Signs of a very bad reaction. These include wheezing; tightness in the chest; fever; itching; bad cough; blue skin color; seizures; swelling of face, lips, tongue, or throat. Go to the ER right away.

  • Signs of liver problems. These include upset stomach or throwing up, belly pain, feeling tired, dark urine, yellow skin or eyes, not hungry.

  • Very bad throwing up

  • Very bad loose stools

  • Muscle pain and weakness

  • Not able to pass urine or change in how much urine is passed

Last Reviewed Date

2022-04-13

Consumer information use

This generalized information is a limited summary of diagnosis, treatment, and/or medication information. It is not meant to be comprehensive and should be used as a tool to help the user understand and/or assess potential diagnostic and treatment options. It does NOT include all information about conditions, treatments, medications, side effects, or risks that may apply to a specific patient. It is not intended to be medical advice or a substitute for the medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment of a health care provider based on the health care provider's examination and assessment of a patient’s specific and unique circumstances. Patients must speak with a health care provider for complete information about their health, medical questions, and treatment options, including any risks or benefits regarding use of medications. This information does not endorse any treatments or medications as safe, effective, or approved for treating a specific patient. UpToDate, Inc. and its affiliates disclaim any warranty or liability relating to this information or the use thereof. The use of this information is governed by the Terms of Use, available at https://www.wolterskluwer.com/en/know/clinical-effectiveness-terms

Copyright

Copyright © 2022 UpToDate, Inc. and its affiliates and/or licensors. All rights reserved.

Further information

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.