Benefits of Plant Sterols
It is thought that plant sterols reduce the risk of heart disease mostly by lowering cholesterol. Because plant sterols are not absorbed well from the digestive system to the rest of the body, they work mostly within the digestive system. Plant sterols work primarily by blocking the absorption of cholesterol from the intestine.
Plant sterols are probably safe for children when consumed in small amounts (such as in foods). It is not known if it is safe in higher amounts. Since plant sterol functional foods (like margarines or spreads with plant sterols) are more expensive than their "regular" counterparts (and since there are no documented health benefits for such products in children), it is probably not worth the money to use these products in most children, who are not likely to have high cholesterol.