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Open Access Research article

An evaluation of the hypolipidemic effect of an extract of Hibiscus Sabdariffa leaves in hyperlipidemic Indians: a double blind, placebo controlled trial

Rebecca Kuriyan1*, Divya R Kumar1, Rajendran R2 and Anura V Kurpad1

Author Affiliations

1 Division of Nutrition, St. John's Research Institute, St. John's National Academy of Health Sciences, Bangalore 560034, India

2 Green Chem, Domlur, Bangalore, India

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BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine 2010, 10:27  doi:10.1186/1472-6882-10-27

Published: 17 June 2010



Hibiscus sabdariffa is used regularly in folk medicine to treat various conditions.


The study was a double blind, placebo controlled, randomized trial. Sixty subjects with serum LDL values in the range of 130-190 mg/dl and with no history of coronary heart disease were randomized into experimental and placebo groups. The experimental group received 1 gm of the extract for 90 days while the placebo received a similar amount of maltodextrin in addition to dietary and physical activity advice for the control of their blood lipids. Anthropometry, blood biochemistry, dietary and physical activity were assessed at baseline, day 45 and day 90.


While body weight, serum LDL cholesterol and triglyceride levels decreased in both groups, there were no significant differences between the experimental and placebo group.


It is likely that the observed effects were as a result of the patients following the standard dietary and physical activity advice. At a dose of 1 gm/day, hibiscus sabdariffa leaf extract did not appear to have a blood lipid lowering effect.

Trial Registration