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Our Clinical Trial Research

A Mayo Clinic and University of Manitoba study reveals:

Doctors and patients have a new option for high cholesterol.

With just two servings per day, Step One Foods offers a proven-effective way to naturally lower LDL (bad) cholesterol in as little as 30 days.

Nearly 9% Average Reduction in Bad Cholesterol

Bad cholesterol was reduced by an average of 8.8% among study participants, and overall cholesterol by 5%. This is clinical proof that food can be a powerful medicine when it comes to managing cholesterol!

Clinically-Proven Results

Step One Foods products were put to the test with a groundbreaking study conducted at Mayo Clinic and the University of Manitoba – world leaders in patient care and nutrition science, respectively. The results were clear: food intervention can be as effective as medications for lowering cholesterol!

Read the full research paper in the Journal of Nutrition.

Mayo Clinic Cholesterol Study 

Abstract & Background:

Managing high cholesterol with statin drugs can be challenging for many. We explored if a food-based approach using tasty snacks containing cholesterol-lowering ingredients could help those unwilling or unable to take statins. Over two four-week phases, 54 adults swapped some usual snacks with specially made ones.

Objectives & Methods:

Our primary goal was to see how these special snacks, packed with natural cholesterol reducers, impacted cholesterol levels in people avoiding or intolerant of statins. We tracked changes in total cholesterol, LDL (bad) cholesterol, HDL (good) cholesterol and triglyceride levels during the study in participants who replaced regular snacks with these special ones.

Results & Conclusions:

The study revealed highly significant, rapid reductions in LDL cholesterol (about 8.8%) and total cholesterol (about 5.1%) in those who couldn't or wouldn't take statins when they ate these snacks. Some participants saw LDL reductions as high as 37.6% in just 30 days. Compliance was high at 95%. These findings suggest that these cholesterol-lowering snacks could serve as a promising alternative for those struggling with medication-based approaches for treating high cholesterol.

Big Results Can Happen in Just 30 Days

Study participants ate two servings a day of Step One Foods products— simply replacing something they were already eating. They were asked not to change anything else about their diet, or lifestyle during the trial.

The information on this page comes from a research paper published in The Journal of Nutrition:

Kopecky S,  Alias S, Klodas E, Jones P: Reduction in Serum LDL Cholesterol Using a Nutrient Compendium in Hyperlipidemic Adults Unable or Unwilling to Use Statin Therapy: A Double-Blind Randomized Crossover Clinical Trial. J Nutr. 2022 Jan 26:nxab375. doi: 10.1093/jn/nxab375

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Research Q&A

The trial used a free-living, double blind, cross over, randomized design and was performed by more than one medical institution and in more than one country, meaning the foods were subjected to very vigorous testing, typically reserved for evaluating pharmaceutical drugs.  The highly consistent LDL (bad) cholesterol reductions seen underscore the power of this food intervention.

The study was conducted at Mayo Clinic and University of Manitoba.  Researchers and clinicians from those institutions were responsible for conducting the research and analyzing the results.

Some participants saw LDL (bad) cholesterol reductions of 20, 30 even close to 40% in 30 days.  That’s similar to what we’d expect with medications.  However, this was not everyone so it’s important to check your individual response with a blood test.

LDL-C is a well recognized, potent risk factor for heart disease.  Lowering LDL-C has also been shown (consistently and in multiple studies) to lower the risk of heart attack, stroke and death due to heart disease.

Yes.  Step One Foods lowers cholesterol through a different mechanism than statins do and do not cross-react.  The foods were specifically designed to help individuals lower their dependence on medications to lower cholesterol levels so you may see that you need lower doses of statins to achieve the same cholesterol results if you use the two approaches together.

No, if you are currently prescribed a statin by your physician you should not discontinue it unless you consult with them. To most accurately assess how Step One Foods impacts your cholesterol levels, you should take your statin as usual in conjunction with Step One Foods twice per day. After 30 days of consistent use, you can test your cholesterol levels; if there is an improvement (or even similar readings) you and your healthcare provider can discuss adjusting your prescription.

We always advocate that you work with your provider on all aspects of your health care and health plan.  However, Step One Foods are just that - foods.  So you do not necessarily need your physician’s permission or a prescription to try the program.

Some individuals should be on statin medications (people with known heart disease, those with diabetes and those with familial hypercholesterolemia).  For most other people, trying food before trying drugs makes sense, especially since it only takes 30 days to test if you are someone who responds well to a food-based intervention.

Like medications, Step One will work so long as you are taking it.  However, the goal is for you to gradually transition to an eating plan that supports lower cholesterol levels in general.  Step One is a great place to get started and to help support you on that health journey.

No.  Our foods are specifically formulated to yield a measurable health benefit.  Other foods, even though they may appear similar, are not.  Our trial tested “better for you” foods from categories similar to Step One’s products and found no change in cholesterol readings.

The trial tested twice-per-day use and this is what we recommend.  Although it’s possible to see an even greater response with higher intake, the foods are also high in fiber and that may be a limiting factor.

The cholesterol response you see will persist so long as you are using the foods.  Over the long haul, the goal is for you to gradually transition to an eating plan that supports lower cholesterol levels in general.  Step One is a great place to get started and to help support you on that health journey.

Step One Foods products are a premium brand of foods formulated specifically to support cardiovascular disease care and prevention. As such, they are not typical of foods available in retail/grocery stores and are only available online at

If you have any questions about the study or its findings, feel free to contact us.

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