SOURCE: RD Foods

May 23, 2006 11:00 ET

New Food Category Rises to Help Curb U.S. Cholesterol Epidemic

Created by Two Nutritionists, Sales Soar for Right Direction Cookies With Soluble Fiber and Plant Sterols

KENILWORTH, NJ -- (MARKET WIRE) -- May 23, 2006 -- U.S. consumers are digging their hands into a healthier cookie jar.

Customers coast-to-coast are gobbling up Right Direction Cookies™, the first product on the market with the proper amount of soluble fiber and plant sterols proven to help lower cholesterol. Sales of Right Direction Cookies, www.rightdirectioncookies.net, are soaring over 700 percent since the national launch of the product line earlier this year, establishing a new food category to help stem America's cholesterol epidemic.

"When I first tried the cookie, I was surprised by how good it tasted," says New Jersey native Tom Heath. "I started eating them every day. Within two months, my cholesterol dropped and my doctor gave me the green light to continue eating them twice a day. I have more energy and I feel healthier." The 57-year-old has been eating two Right Direction Cookies daily since a pilot program last fall. Tests show a significant drop in his cholesterol.

Registered dietitians Wendy Miller and Norman Null created Right Direction Cookies -- and a new food category -- by adding research-supported amounts of soluble fiber and plant sterols to a family recipe that includes real, gourmet chocolate chips.

Two Right Direction Cookies contain 10 grams of dietary fiber, including 8 grams of soluble fiber (as much as 3 cups of cooked oatmeal), and 2.6 grams of plant sterols (as much as 3 cups of sunflower seeds).

"Most people don't eat enough soluble fiber and plant sterols daily to reap the cholesterol-lowering benefits associated with these ingredients. It's easier to eat two chocolate chip cookies instead of three cups of sunflower seeds," said cookie co-creator Miller, president of RD Foods. "We created Right Direction Cookies to help our patients who were struggling with their food options. The cookies worked for our patients, and now they're working for consumers across the country."

According to the American Heart Association (AHA), at least 50 percent of the American adult population has high cholesterol.

An award-winning study on the cholesterol-lowering effects of this specially formulated chocolate chip cookie indicates patients who ate two chocolate chip Right Direction Cookies each day for 30 days showed a significant drop in total cholesterol and bad cholesterol.

"This cholesterol-lowering cookie appears to be a novel and effective option for people looking to take important steps in their overall cardiovascular health," said Jay Udani, MD, lead author of the study and Medical Director of Medicus Research. "Right Direction Cookies, with soluble fiber and plant sterols, helped study participants significantly lower their total cholesterol, LDL cholesterol and fasting glucose levels without any weight gain."

Soluble fiber absorbs water, cholesterol, fat and bile, carrying them through the digestive tract and out of the body in the stool. Research shows plant sterols lower blood cholesterol by blocking cholesterol absorption from food during digestion. Plant sterols are a naturally occurring component present in many fruits and vegetables including broccoli and green beans.

Miller and Null say they are working to educate consumers about the cookie's active ingredients as part of their campaign to lead this new food category. The duo's website, www.rightdirectioncookies.net, showcases a Health Center where consumers can learn more about the science behind soluble fiber and plant sterols.

Still, customers say the taste and the results are keeping them coming back for more.

"I love these cookies," said Randy Corby, an L.A.-based marriage and family therapist, who has hereditary high cholesterol. "Since ordering Right Direction Cookies, I've picked up a great habit -- breakfast. I have one cookie with my morning coffee and another for a midday snack. It's a high fiber cookie, so it's quite filling. I've actually lost weight since I started eating them. My teenage son really enjoys them, too. Now he's eating two cookies a day."

Right Direction Cookies are currently sold exclusively online at www.rightdirectioncookies.net. Miller and Null say they are exploring several options to extend the cookie line to grocery stores.

RD Foods (www.rightdirectioncookies.net) has a focused mission: Helping people lead healthier lives by providing resourceful, appealing food options. The company's debut product, Right Direction Cookies™, is a delicious chocolate chip cookie that is revolutionizing the way consumers manage cholesterol and add quality fiber to their diets. Based in New Jersey, RD Foods is a privately held company.

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