Foods, Uncategorized

Eat Dark Chocolate and Olive Oil Together!

choc

Those with a high cardiovascular risk profile should eat dark chocolate with olive oil, new study finds

 

In recent years, the medical community has put a lot of effort into educating people about reducing their cholesterol levels in order to protect their heart health. Of course, those who do have elevated cholesterol levels are often prescribed statin drugs like Lipitor, Zocor and others to lower these levels. In fact, these are among the most prescribed drugs of all time.

 

Nonetheless, these toxic drugs carry serious side effects, including muscle pain and weakness, increased liver enzymes, asthma complications, and birth defects in pregnant women, to name just a few.

 

This doesn’t mean, though, that there isn’t a healthy solution to reducing cholesterol levels naturally. In addition to maintaining a healthy weight and exercising regularly, a recent study has unlocked another key to taking care of your heart: eating dark chocolate and extra virgin olive oil together.

 

The study, undertaken by researchers from the University of Pisa in Italy, who presented the results at the European Society of Cardiology (ESC) Congress in August, concluded that dark chocolate enriched with extra virgin olive oil can lead to improved heart health and a better cardiovascular risk profile.

 

“A healthy diet is known to reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease,” said Dr. Rossella Di Stefano, a cardiologist at the University of Pisa, and the lead author of the study. “Fruits and vegetables exert their protective effects through plant polyphenols, which are found in cocoa, olive oil, and apples. Research has found that the Italian Panaia red apple has very high levels of polyphenols and antioxidants.”

 

The researchers set out to determine whether a combination of either dark chocolate and olive oil or dark chocolate and Panaia red apple might halt the progress of atherosclerosis (a build-up of plaque on the artery walls, causing obstructed blood flow, and potentially a life-threatening blood clot) in otherwise healthy people with cardiovascular risk factors.

 

The ESC explained in a press release:

 

The randomised crossover study included 26 volunteers (14 men, 12 women) with at least three cardiovascular risk factors (smoking, dyslipidaemia, hypertension, or family history of cardiovascular disease) who received 40 grams of dark chocolate daily for 28 days. For 14 consecutive days it contained 10% extra virgin olive oil and for 14 consecutive days it contained 2.5% Panaia red apple. The two types of chocolate were given in random order.

 

Progression of atherosclerosis was assessed by metabolic changes (levels of carnitine and hippurate), lipid profile, blood pressure and levels of circulating endothelial progenitor cells (EPCs). EPCs are critical for vascular repair and maintenance of endothelial function.

 

The researchers took urine and blood samples at the beginning of the study and again at the end. The urine samples were analyzed for endogenous metabolites using proton nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy, and circulating EPC levels were evaluated with flow cytometry. Body mass index (BMI), blood pressure levels, smoking status, lipid profile and glycaemia, were also carefully monitored for all participants.

 

The results were quite astounding. At the end of the 28-day study, the researchers found that EPC levels were significantly increased after consumption of the olive oil-enriched chocolate. Carnitine and hippurate levels were considerably decreased – which is a good thing – both in comparison to baseline figures and to the apple-enriched chocolate.

 

Most encouragingly, consumption of the olive oil-enhanced chocolate resulted in significant increases in high-density lipoprotein (good cholesterol) and sizable reductions in blood pressure levels. (Related: Olive oil antioxidant naturally kills all cancer cells tested within an hour.)

 

So, if like millions of others you’ve been advised to take steps to decrease your cholesterol levels, you now have a fantastic excuse to increase your consumption of delicious dark chocolate. Just make sure you take some pure virgin olive oil with it! Perhaps melt that chocolate in a little olive oil and pour over fresh strawberries? Yum

 

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Foods, Health and Disease, Uncategorized

Can Eating Walnuts Lower Your Cholesterol?

walnuts

Can Eating Walnuts Help Lower Your Cholesterol?

You Only Need a Handful of Walnuts Each Day

 

Walnuts are not only good for cooking – they are healthy nuts that can also help your heart.

 

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA), recognizing the cholesterol-lowering properties of walnuts, accepted a petition filed by the California Walnut Commission in March 2004 to list the health claim that walnuts can aid in reducing cholesterol levels on product labels.

 

The discovery of the benefits of walnuts come from many clinical studies performed by various research institutions all over the world.

The results show consuming walnuts is beneficial in lowering cholesterol levels.

Walnuts are also noted for reducing the risk of heart disease and inflammation.

 

Walnuts Are Heart-Healthy

Walnuts demonstrate heart-healthy benefits due to the presence of high amounts of omega-3 fatty acids and phytosterols.

 

Omega-3-fatty acids reduce triglycerides levels and slightly reduce LDL levels (low-density lipoproteins, also know as the bad cholesterol). In fact, walnuts contain the highest amount of omega-3-fatty acids in 1 ounce of nuts (i.e. one handful) in comparison to other nuts (2.5 g of omega-3-fatty acids versus less than 0.5 g found in other nuts).

 

Phytosterols appear to slightly lower LDL cholesterol levels, however, the mechanism by which it does this is not entirely known.

In addition to heart-healthy ingredients, walnuts also contain a wealth of other nutrients, including vitamin E, the B vitamins, fiber, and several minerals.

 

Lower Your Cholesterol with Walnuts

Many studies on walnuts suggest that you only need to consume a handful of walnuts each day to receive the cholesterol-lowering benefits of these tree nuts.

 

The FDA agrees with this health claim, which will be on every bag of walnuts you purchase and will state the following: “supportive but not conclusive research shows that eating 1.5 oz of walnuts per day, as part of a low saturated fat and low cholesterol diet, and not resulting in increased caloric intake may reduce the risk of coronary heart disease.

 

The Proof Walnuts Lower Cholesterol

 

Many studies indicate the usefulness of walnuts in reducing cholesterol levels. Some of the most important include:

 

The first study involving the benefits of walnuts was from Loma Linda University in 1993. This study revealed a controlled diet containing walnuts reduced LDL cholesterol significantly in comparison to the Step One diet produced by the American Heart Association. The controlled diet was a modified version of the Step One diet, with the exception that walnuts replaced the fatty acid portion in the diet.

A Harvard study outlining the benefits of nuts concluded that high dietary nut consumption decreased the risk of sudden cardiac death in 2002. In addition to this, many studies have elucidated the benefits of consuming walnuts and other omega-3 fatty acid-containing foods, citing that consuming high amounts of these products reduced the risk of stroke and clogging of arteries.

The bottom line is that walnuts are a healthy snack packed with important nutrients that can help keep cholesterol levels — and your heart — healthy. It’s amazing that most studies have shown that it takes only one handful daily to achieve this beneficial effect.

 

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Rx to Wellness, Uncategorized

Statins are Dangerous! Educate Your Doctor

statins

 

Statins are Dangerous! Educate Your Doctor.

 

The idea that saturated fat is bad for your heart and should be avoided to prevent heart disease is misguided to say the least.

 

There’s no telling how many people have been harmed by this dangerous advice, as scientific evidence shows that a lack of healthy fat actually increases your cardiovascular health risks, but the number is likely significant.

 

Adding insult to injury, cholesterol-lowering drugs (statins) have become the go-to “preventive medicine,” despite ever-mounting evidence showing that these drugs can do far more harm than good as well.

 

Taken together, a low-fat diet and statins is a recipe for chronic health problems, and I cannot advise against falling into this trap strongly enough.

 

One in four Americans over the age of 45 currently take a statin drug, despite the fact that there are over 900 studies proving their adverse effects, which run the gamut from muscle problems to increased cancer risk—not to mention an increased risk for heart failure!

 

Questions have also been raised about statins’ potential to cause amnesia and/or dementia-like symptoms in some patients. According to Scientific American,1 hundreds of such cases have been registered with MedWatch, the US Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) adverse drug reaction database.

 

Statin Guidelines May Hurt Millions of Healthy People

 

 

In November 2013, the US updated its guidelines on cholesterol,2 focusing more on risk factors rather than cholesterol levels—a move estimated to double the number of Americans being prescribed these dangerous drugs.

 

According to the highly criticized new guideline, if you answer “yes” to ANY of the following four questions, your treatment protocol will call for a statin drug:

1.Do you have heart disease?

2.Do you have diabetes? (either type 1 or type 2)

3.Is your LDL cholesterol above 190?

4.Is your 10-year risk of a heart attack greater than 7.5 percent?

 

Your 10-year heart attack risk involves the use of a cardiovascular risk calculator, which researchers have warned may overestimate your risk by anywhere from 75 to 150 percent—effectively turning even very healthy people at low risk for heart problems into candidates for statins.

 

The guideline also does away with the previous recommendation to use the lowest drug dose possible.3 The new guideline basically focuses ALL the attention on statin-only treatment, and at higher dosages.

 

The UK followed suit in July 2014, recommending statins for otherwise healthy people with a 10 percent or greater 10-year risk of cardiovascular disease (CVD). As in the US, this was a dramatic change in recommendation, raising the number of Britons eligible for statins by about 4.5 million.

 

Pediatric Statin Guidelines Dramatically Increase Number of Teens on These Dangerous Drugs

 

 

Even teens and young adults are now being placed on statins. In 2011, the US National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI) issued new guidelines4,5 for reducing heart disease in children and adolescents, recommending statin treatment if cholesterol levels are at a certain level.

 

Meanwhile, the American College of Cardiology (ACC) and American Heart Association (AHA) have far tighter restrictions on the use of statins in those under the age of 40.

 

According to a new study,6 if doctors follow the NHLBI’s guidelines, nearly half a million teens and young adults between the ages of 17-21 will be placed on statins. As reported by Medicinenet.com:7

 

 

“Gooding’s team found that 2.5 percent of those with elevated levels of ‘bad’ low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol would qualify for statin treatment under the NHLBI cholesterol guidelines for children, compared with only 0.4 percent under the ACC/AHA adult guidelines.

 

That means that 483,500 people in that age group would qualify for statin treatment under the NHLBI guidelines, compared with 78,200 under adult guidelines…

 

It’s common for abnormal cholesterol levels and other heart disease risk factors to start appearing when people are teens, but the two sets of recommendations offer doctors conflicting advice, the researchers said.

 

For now, they recommend that physicians and patients ‘engage in shared decision making around the potential benefits, harms, and patient preferences for treatment…’”

 

Statin Drugs Can Wreck Your Health in Multiple Ways

 

 

Ironically, while statins are touted as “preventive medicine” to protect your heart health, these drugs can actually have detrimental effects on your heart, especially if you fail to supplement with CoQ10 (or better yet, ubiquinol, which is the reduced and more effective form of CoQ10).

 

For example, a study published in the journal Atherosclerosis8 showed that statin use is associated with a 52 percent increased prevalence and extent of calcified coronary plaque compared to non-users. And coronary artery calcification is the hallmark of potentially lethal heart disease.

 

Statins have also been shown to increase your risk of diabetes via a number of different mechanisms, so if you weren’t put on a statin because you have diabetes, you may end up with a diabetes diagnosis courtesy of the drug. Two of these mechanisms include:

  • Increasing insulin resistance, which contributes to chronic inflammation in your body, and inflammation is the hallmark of most diseases. In fact, increased insulin resistance can lead to heart disease, which, again, is the primary reason for taking a statin in the first place.

 

It can also promote belly fat, high blood pressure, heart attacks, chronic fatigue, thyroid disruption, and diseases like Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s, and cancer.

  • Raising your blood sugar. When you eat a meal that contains starches and sugar, some of the excess sugar goes to your liver, which then stores it away as cholesterol and triglycerides. Statins work by preventing your liver from making cholesterol. As a result, your liver returns the sugar to your bloodstream, which raises your blood sugar levels.

 

Drug-induced diabetes and conventional lifestyle induced type 2 diabetes are not necessarily identical. If you’re on a statin drug and find that your blood glucose is elevated, it’s possible that what you have is just hyperglycemia—a side effect, and the result of your medication.Unfortunately, many doctors will at that point mistakenly diagnose you with “type 2 diabetes,” and possibly prescribe yet another drug, when all you may need to do is simply discontinue the statin.

 

Statins also interfere with other biological functions. Of utmost importance, statins deplete your body of CoQ10, which accounts for many of its devastating results Therefore, if you take a statin, you must take supplemental CoQ10 or ubiquinol. Statins also interfere with the mevalonate pathway, which is the central pathway for the steroid management. Products of this pathway that are negatively affected by statins include:

  • All your sex hormones
  • Cortisone
  • The dolichols, which are involved in keeping the membranes inside your cells healthy
  • All sterols, including cholesterol and vitamin D (which is similar to cholesterol and is produced from cholesterol in your skin)

 

Refined Carbs—Not Fat—Are Responsible for Heart Disease

 

 

As noted by the Institute for Science in Society,9 Ancel Keys’ 1963 “Seven Countries Study” was instrumental in creating the saturated fat myth. He claimed to have found a correlation between total cholesterol concentration and heart disease, but in reality this was the result of cherry picking data.

 

When data from 16 excluded countries are added back in, the association between saturated fat consumption and mortality vanishes. In fact, the full data set suggests that those who eat the most saturated animal fat tend to have a lower incidence of heart disease:

 

 

“Nevertheless, people were advised to cut fat intake to 30 percent of total energy and saturated fat to 10 percent. Dietary fat is believed to have the greatest influence on cardiovascular risk through elevated concentrations of low density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol. But the reduction in LDL cholesterol from reducing saturated fat intake appears to be specific to large, buoyant type A LDL particles, when it is the small dense type B particles – responsive to carbohydrate intake – that are implicated in cardiovascular disease.” [Emphasis mine]

 

We’ve long acknowledged that the Western diet is associated with increased rates of obesity, diabetes, and heart disease. Yet the conventional paradigm is extremely reluctant to accept that it is the sugar content of this diet that is the primary culprit. When you eat more non-vegetable carbohydrates than your body can use, the excess is converted to fat by your liver. This process occurs to help your body maintain blood sugar control in the short-term, however it will likely increase triglyceride concentrations, which will increase your risk of cardiovascular disease.

 

Excessive consumption of refined grains and added sugars will also elevate your insulin and leptin levels and raise your risk of insulin/leptin resistance, which is at the heart of many chronic health problems. High insulin levels also suppresses two other important hormones — glucagons and growth hormones — that are responsible for burning fat and sugar and promoting muscle development, respectively.

 

So elevated insulin from excess carbohydrates promotes fat accumulation, and then dampens your body’s ability to lose that fat. Excess weight and obesity not only lead to heart disease but also a wide variety of other diseases.So, while whole grains are allowed to make health claims saying they’re heart healthy, and low-fat foods are conventionally recognized as healthy for your heart, please remember that replacing saturated fats in your diet (like those from grass-fed beef, raw organic butter, and other high-quality animal foods) with carbohydrates (like breakfast cereal, bread, bagels, and pasta) will actually increase your risk of heart disease, not lower it.

 

Studies Show Saturated Fat Is Not Associated with Increased Heart Disease Risk, But Sugar Is

 

 

In one 2010 study,10 women who ate the most high glycemic foods had more than double the risk of developing heart disease as women who ate the fewest. Previous studies, including an excellent one published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition,11 have also linked high-carb diets to heart disease. Contrary to popular belief, the scientific evidence also shows that saturated fat is in fact a necessary part of a heart healthy diet, and firmly debunks the myth that saturated fat promotes heart disease.

 

For example:

  • In a 1992 editorial published in the Archives of Internal Medicine,12 Dr. William Castelli, a former director of the Framingham Heart study, stated:

 

 

“In Framingham, Mass., the more saturated fat one ate, the more cholesterol one ate, the more calories one ate, the lower the person’s serum cholesterol. The opposite of what… Keys et al would predict… We found that the people who ate the most cholesterol, ate the most saturated fat, ate the most calories, weighed the least and were the most physically active.”

  • A 2010 meta-analysis,13 which pooled data from 21 studies and included nearly 348,000 adults, found no difference in the risks of heart disease and stroke between people with the lowest and highest intakes of saturated fat.
  • Another 2010 study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition14 found that a reduction in saturated fat intake must be evaluated in the context of replacement by other macronutrients, such as carbohydrates. When you replace saturated fat with a higher carbohydrate intake, particularly refined carbohydrate, you exacerbate insulin resistance and obesity, increase triglycerides and small LDL particles, and reduce beneficial HDL cholesterol.The authors state that dietary efforts to improve your cardiovascular disease risk should primarily emphasize the limitation of refined carbohydrate intake, and weight reduction.
  • A 2014 meta-analysis15 of 76 studies by researchers at Cambridge University found no basis for guidelines that advise low saturated fat consumption to lower your cardiac risk, calling into question all of the standard nutritional guidelines related to heart health. According to the authors: “Current evidence does not clearly support cardiovascular guidelines that encourage high consumption of polyunsaturated fatty acids and low consumption of total saturated fats.”

 

Simple Lifestyle Changes Can Effectively Protect Your Heart Health

 

 

Contrary to what pharmaceutical PR firms will tell you, statins have nothing to do with reducing your heart disease risk. In fact, this class of drugs can actually increase your heart disease risk—especially if you do not take ubiquinol (CoQ10) along with it to mitigate the depletion of CoQ10 caused by the drug.Poor lifestyle choices are primarily to blame for increased heart disease risk, such as eating too much refined sugar and processed foods, getting too little exercise and movement, lack of sun exposure and rarely, or never grounding to the earth. These are all things that are within your control, and don’t cost much (if any) money to address.

 

It’s also worth noting that statins can effectively nullify the benefits of exercise, which in and of itself is important to bolster heart health and maintain healthy cholesterol levels. In fact, one of the best ways to condition your heart is to engage in high-intensity interval exercise.16,17 Taking a drug that counteracts your personal efforts to improve your health seems like a really questionable tactic. If you’re currently taking a statin drug and are worried about the excessive side effects they cause, please consult with a knowledgeable health care practitioner who can help you to optimize your heart health naturally, without the use of these dangerous drugs.

 

Health and WELLness Associates

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Dr J Jaranson

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Health and Disease, Uncategorized

Cholesterol Lowering Drugs Will Wreck Your Muscles and more

musclecramps

Cholesterol-Lowering Drugs Will Wreck Your Muscles

 

Cholesterol-lowering “statin” drugs often come with side effects. The most frequently reported consequence is fatigue, and about 9 percent of patients report statin-related pain.

 

The results of a new study show that statins at higher doses may also affect the ability of the skeletal muscles — which allow your body to move — to repair and regenerate themselves.

 

The study examined the proliferative capacity of human satellite cells when exposed to the statin simvastatin. They found that higher end concentrations of the drug led to reduced proliferation, which would likely negatively affect the muscle’s ability to heal and repair itself.

 

Statins — a class of drugs used to lower your cholesterol — are among the most commonly prescribed medications in the world. I’ve long maintained that statins are one of the most unnecessary drugs there is, and I’m not about to change my mind anytime soon. The list of studies documenting their dangers to your health just keeps getting longer.

 

With at least 12 million Americans taking statins, and experts’ recommendations that another 23 million “should” be taking them, it’s important to educate yourself on this issue.

 

Now, there are a very small group of people with genetic enzyme defects that end up having cholesterol levels above 325-350. These are about the only individuals in my experience, who seem to benefit from statins. In my clinical experience, which spans over more than two decades and thousands of patients, there have been a grand total of three patients that required statins to control this genetic problem.

 

For the remainder of you, taking a statin drug to control your cholesterol levels will likely do far more harm than good.

 

The Dangerous Side Effects of Statin Drugs

 

Statins have been known to cause muscle pain and weakness, but no one knew exactly why. More recent studies, however, have shed light on this mystery – including the latest study above. These findings add valuable talking-points to your arsenal when discussing your need for a statin drug with your doctor.

 

As Dr. Thalacker-Mercer, a member of the research team, stated:

 

“While these are preliminary data and more research is necessary, the results indicate serious adverse effects of statins that may alter the ability of skeletal muscle to repair and regenerate due to the anti-proliferative effects of statins.”

 

And,

 

“It is possible that older adults may not be able to distinguish between muscle pain related to a statin effect or an effect of aging and therefore adverse effects of statins in older adults may be under-reported.”

 

In this study, the viability of the proliferating cells was reduced by 50 percent at a dose equivalent to 40 milligrams of Simvastatin – the dose per day used in some patients. This could clearly have a negative effect on your skeletal muscles’ ability to heal and repair themselves, and could lead to eventually becoming more or less incapacitated.

 

Additionally, a study published last year in the Journal of Clinical Investigation found that statin drugs can activate the atrogin-1 gene, which plays a key role in muscle atrophy.

 

Three separate tests showed that even at low concentrations, statin drugs led to atrogin-1 induced muscle damage. As the drug dose increased, the damage increased as well.

 

One thing is for sure. You should NOT ignore symptoms of pain and muscle weakness, as they can deteriorate into even more dangerous conditions, including death.

 

For example, Bayer’s statin, Baycol, was pulled from the market in 2001 after 31 people died from rhabdomyolysis, a condition in which muscle tissue breaks down resulting in kidney failure.

 

Adding insult to injury, Vytorin, a drug that combines two cholesterol drugs — Zetia and Zocor – into one pill, has been found to cause the opposite effect of that desired: plaques grew nearly TWICE AS FAST in patients taking the Zetia-Zocor combination compared to those taking Zocor alone.

 

Experts called the results “shocking.”

 

Other serious and potentially life threatening side effects include, but are not limited to:

 

An increase in cancer risk

Immune system suppression

Chronic Kidney Failure

Potential increase in liver enzymes, so patients must be monitored for normal liver function

What You Must Know About Cholesterol

 

Statin drugs work by preventing the formation of cholesterol, and reducing LDL cholesterol, which is considered the “bad” cholesterol. There is no argument that these drugs are effective at lowering your cholesterol levels. However, they in no way, shape or form, treat the cause of your problem.

 

In order to understand why you don’t need them to manage your cholesterol levels, you first need to understand that there is no such thing as “good” or “bad” cholesterol.

 

Both HDL and LDL cholesterol perform vital functions in your body, which is why it’s actually dangerous to bring your LDL levels down too low.

 

HDL (high density lipoprotein) and LDL (low density lipoprotein) are actually proteins that transport the cholesterol to and from your tissues. Cholesterol in turn is a precursor to steroid hormones. (For example, you can’t make testosterone or estrogen, cortisol, DHEA or pregnenolone, or a multitude of other steroid hormones that are necessary for health, without cholesterol.)

 

Even more importantly, you can’t make new cell membranes without cholesterol.

 

So, the major reasons your body makes cholesterol in the first place, and why you have LDL, is to take the cholesterol to the tissue so you can make new cells or repair old damaged ones.

 

The Relevant Facts About “Bad” Cholesterol Your Doctor May Not Have Told You

 

The reason why LDL could be considered “bad” at all is because there are different sizes of LDL particles, and it’s the LDL particle size that is relevant. Small particles can easily get stuck and cause inflammation, which leads to damage and the buildup of scar tissue, also known as arterial plaque.

 

Unfortunately, most people don’t hear about that part.

 

And, naturally, the drug companies don’t want you to know that part of the science because it would severely limit the number of people going on cholesterol-lowering drugs, since statins do not modulate the size of the particles.

 

The only way to make sure your LDL particles are large enough to not get stuck and cause inflammation and damage is through diet. In fact, it’s one of the major things that insulin does.

 

If you eat properly — which is really the only known good way to regulate LDL particle size — then it does the right thing; it takes the cholesterol to your tissues, the HDL takes it back to your liver, and nothing gets stuck causing damage.

 

Simply Reducing Your Insulin Levels Can Achieve Statin Drug Effect

 

Another noteworthy point: Statins work by reducing the enzyme that tells your liver to produce cholesterol when it is stimulated by increased insulin levels. But you can achieve the same, or better, result by simply reducing your insulin levels.

 

How?

 

Simple! Reducing or eliminating sugar and most grains will effectively lower your insulin levels naturally.

 

You also need to be aware that statins are non-specific inhibitors of not just one, but a number of very important liver enzymes. For example, not only do they block HMG coenzyme A reductase (a key enzyme in cholesterol synthesis), they also block Coenzyme Q10.

 

CoQ10 is a vital enzyme that your body needs for energy and cardiovascular health. It is widely recommended to repair heart damage, boost the function of the heart and acts as a protectant against heart attacks and valve damage. Additionally, CoQ10 has been shown to be beneficial in heart and lung cancer, as well as maintain cognitive function.

 

Thus, when you take statins your production of this enzyme is dramatically depleted and you do not reap the health benefits associated with it.

 

How to Normalize Your Cholesterol Without the Use of Drugs

 

Just about every person, other than the tiny minority with the genetic enzyme defects I mentioned in the beginning, can normalize their cholesterol levels with my Take Control of Your Health Program, which includes modifying your eating habits based on your body’s unique nutritional type.

 

If you truly want to normalize your cholesterol levels, following these simple lifestyle changes can get you there:

 

Normalize your insulin levels by eliminating sugar and grains.

Take a high-quality krill oil or fish oil, which are chock full of beneficial omega-3 fatty acids.

If you are a man, or a woman who is in menopause, check your iron levels as elevated levels of iron can cause major oxidative damage in your blood vessels, heart and other organs. Excess iron is also one of the major contributing factors of cancer risk.

Exercise regularly.

Energy Psychology methods such as Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT) can also be helpful for cholesterol reduction.  Read this press release for the possibilities: Doctors Use New Acupressure Technique to Lower Cholesterol and Triglyceride Levels: Medications Unnecessary.

 

Many vitamins and supplements need to be considered for this also, so please contact us to help you with a personal health care plan just for you.

 

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Rx to Wellness, Uncategorized

Seniors Do Not Need Statins

statins

Seniors Don’t Need Statins: Study

 

Senior citizens with no history of heart problems appear to gain no health benefit from cholesterol-lowering statin drugs, a new study suggests.

 

People 65 and older treated with pravastatin (Pravachol) as part of a major clinical trial had about the same risk of death as people in a placebo group, according to the results. They also appeared to suffer strokes and heart attacks at about the same rate.

 

“Our study shows there may not be any benefit for taking a statin therapy for primary prevention for people who are over the age of 65,” said Dr. Benjamin Han.

 

Statins might even pose a risk to people 75 and older, added Han, an assistant professor of medicine and population health at New York University School of Medicine.

 

“There was some suggestion the statin group had a little bit higher mortality than the placebo group” at that age, Han said. But, this result was not statistically significant, he noted.

 

Experts from the American Heart Association and Mount Sinai Hospital in New York City urged doctors and patients to take these findings with a grain of salt.

 

“The only merit to the study is that it raises questions that haven’t been adequately answered,” said Dr. Robert Eckel, an AHA spokesman. “This is not the kind of evidence that should influence guidelines about statin therapy in adults 65 and older,” said Eckel, chair of atherosclerosis at the University of Colorado School of Medicine.

 

For the study, Han and his colleagues analyzed data from a clinical trial conducted from 1994 to 2002, called the Antihypertensive and Lipid-Lowering Treatment to Prevent Heart Attack Trial (ALLHAT-LLT).

 

Most statin studies have focused on middle-aged people, so there’s little known about the effect of these medications on seniors, Han said.

 

 

With an aging population, the question keeps coming up, “Should you be on a statin medication even if you don’t have a history of cardiovascular disease?” Han said. “Will this help you in the long run?”

 

From the antihypertensive trial data, the researchers drew a sample that included almost 3,000 adults 65 and older with high blood pressure, but no plaque buildup in the arteries that would occur due to high cholesterol.

 

About half of those adults took pravastatin while half received usual care.

 

The researchers found no health benefit from pravastatin in these older patients. In fact, more deaths occurred in the pravastatin group than in the usual care group — 141 versus 130 among adults 65 to 74, and 92 versus 65 among adults 75 and older.

 

The side effects of statins, which include muscle pains and fatigue, might weigh more heavily on older people, Han said.

 

“Anything that can affect their physical function, anything that can affect their ability to do activities on a daily basis, puts them at a higher risk for further decline and a higher risk for mortality,” Han said.

 

Dr. Robert Rosenson is director of cardiometabolic disorders at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai. He said the new study is flawed because its conclusions rely on data from a very small number of patients. For example, the analysis of people 75 and older included only 375 people taking pravastatin and 351 in the control group.

 

“That’s such a small number to detect difference in events, let alone mortality when you’re dealing with a low-potency statin,” Rosenson said.

 

Because of this, the effects noted in the study often aren’t backed up by the statistics, he said.

 

“From a fundamental statistical standpoint, I think they’re far overstating their conclusion,” Rosenson said.

 

Rosenson also criticized the research team for choosing the ALLHAT-LLT clinical trial as source of their data.

 

That trial has been controversial because “it was one of the few cholesterol studies that failed to show a reduction” in heart attacks and strokes, Rosenson said.

 

“If you wanted to make the point that statins don’t help older people and may harm them, then that would be the study you would pick to show that the hypothesis is going to fail,” Rosenson said.

 

Eckel said he is “somewhat underwhelmed” by the study.

 

“There are so many limitations to this paper, and the authors, to their credit, list most if not all of them,” Eckel said.

 

The U.S. National Institutes of Health funded the study. The results were published May 22 in JAMA Internal Medicine.

 

If you need help with alternatives for statins, and getting your cholesterol down, then give us a call and we will set up an appointment for you.

 

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© HealthDay

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Rx to Wellness, Uncategorized

Seven Most Dangerous Prescriptons

spoonful

The Seven Most Dangerous Prescriptions You Can Take

 

A damning Harvard University report has advised that according to the European Commission, about 328,000 patients in the U.S. and Europe die from prescription drugs each year – making prescription drugs the 4th highest cause of death, on a par with stroke.

We could get into legal trouble if we advised you to go against the recommendations of your doctor; however, we can advise you to be as informed as possible about the risks involved in taking prescription meds.

According to the World Health Organization, the pharmaceutical industry is worth 300 billion dollars annually – with an additional hundred million expected to add to the value in the next three years. A third of this entire multi-billion-dollar market is controlled by ten of the largest pharmaceutical companies in the world. According to CMR International, a partner of Thomas Reuters, global pharmaceutical sales reached one trillion dollars in 2014 and will be booming to 1.3 trillion by 2018.

It goes without saying that this is big business – but like every big business, there is a dark side as well. Can we really trust the research – seeing as the same companies selling the pills are funding many of the medical journals and medical schools? And then we have the issue of doctors receiving kickbacks for prescribing certain drugs, after being “educated” on the benefits of the drugs by pharma salesmen.

Remember that doctors do not get paid from your insurance company unless they write a prescription or a procedure, or a follow up with another doctor.

Take a look at this list of seven of the most dangerous prescription drug types and see how they can hurt you.

 

#1: Sleeping Pills (OTC and prescribed)

 

The use of sleeping pills has been associated with an increased risk factor for stroke. A study published by Petrov, et. al. in 2014 revealed that over-the-counter and prescription sleeping pills increased a person’s risk for stroke, independently and beyond any of the other known risk factors like blood pressure, personal history of heart disease, and vices like smoking and drinking alcohol. Isn’t it worrying that compared to all other factors that place a person at risk for stroke, sleeping pills top that list?

This includes any medications that make you drowsy i.e. Benadryl, Night time Nyquil, Tylenol Pm, Valerian,  and such.

 

#2: Cholesterol Drugs (Statins)

Did you know that deaths attributed to heart failure more than doubled from 1989 to 1997, while statins were first given pre-market approval in 1987? This is an alarming “coincidence” – to say the least. Interference with production of Co-Q10 by statin drugs has been proposed as the most likely explanation.

 

Drugs that are meant to control your cholesterol levels may also be damaging your liver. Hepatotoxicity is not completely absent among people who undergo statin therapy, but it is uncommon. However, several studies have discovered that statins cause severe liver damage, especially in in dosages higher than 50 milligrams per day – a scary thing to realize when statin dosages can climb up to 80 milligrams per day when a person has high or uncontrollable cholesterol levels. Atorvastatin, Simvastatin, Fluvastatin, Lovastatin, and Pravastatin have all been linked to liver injury.

 

#3: Blood Pressure Drugs (Beta-blockers, Calcium channel blockers)

 

Among the different drugs prescribed to manage hypertension, calcium channel blockers have been found to be the most common ones linked to adverse drugs reactions (ADRs). The most common ones linked to CCBs are bipedal edema, chest pain, hypersensitivity, and difficulty of breathing. A recent study published in 2014 discovered that immediate-release CCB use was positively associated with an increased risk for breast cancer. On the other hand, beta-blockers have been associated with several adverse side effects, such as increased incidence of post-operative dysrhythmia, troponin elevation, and heart failure, risk for hepatic failure, and small-for-gestational age births.

 

#4: Alzheimer’s Drugs

 

While the positive effects of psychotropic drugs have been well-documented, there have also been studies revealed their adverse effects. A study conducted on the pharmacological treatment of Alzheimer’s disease found that antipsychotics increased a person’s risk for developing diabetes mellitus, heart disease, and stroke, and even overall mortality. The most popular drug prescribed for Alzheimer’s is Aricept or Donezepil and has been linked to nausea, diarrhea, malaise, dizziness, and insomnia.

 

#5: Arthritis Drugs (NSAIDs)

 

It is so easy to be prescribed a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug for pain, and even easier to purchase one from the pharmacy. What most people fail to realize is that NSAIDs are one of the leading causes of drug-related morbidity, especially in elderly and immunocompromised people. They have been directly linked to gastrointestinal problems, destroying the inner lining of the stomach and increasing the risk for ulceration and internal bleeding. Renal effects have also been linked to NSAID use, causing fluid and sodium retention and hypertension (and eventual cardiovascular problems). In worse case scenarios, people with severe kidney problems might even require dialysis. This seemingly innocuous drug is one of if not the most dangerous ones on this list.

 

#6: Diabetes Drugs (Actos, Avanida, Byetta, Metformin)

 

Another class of drugs to watch out for are those prescribed to manage high blood sugar, a characteristic symptom of diabetes. Liver damage has been linked to metformin use. In a study focusing on different ADRs, metformin-induced hepatitis was seen in a case of a person taking 500 milligrams of Metformin three times a day and insulin glargine. Liver damage can manifest as jaundice (yellowing of the skin and eyes) and discoloration of the urine and stool. Further liver damage can cause uncontrollable bleeding and insufficient clearing of toxins from the blood.

 

#7: Chemotherapy (Tamoxifen)

 

The one category of drug on the list that is universally regarded as harmful to a person’s health is chemotherapeutic drugs. When people diagnosed with cancer are advised to undergo chemotherapy, they are prepped for the side effects they will undoubtedly experience along with it. Chemotherapeutic drugs are strong enough to kill rapidly proliferating cancer cells – however there is collateral damage: Healthy cells are also killed and it’s the oft-repeated hope with chemotherapy that it “kills the cancer and doesn’t kill you”. Weakness, hair loss, and appetite loss, are the mildest of these side effects, with more serious ones involving blood in the urine or stool, high-grade fever, severe pain over the chemotherapy infusion site, vomiting and diarrhea, and difficulty breathing.  Chemotherapy is known to kill a significant number of cancer patients.

 

Try to do everything you can not to start any of these medications.  Once you have taken them for a while, your body gets lazy and does not want to work, and lets the pill do all the work.  Then you are on them for life.

 

Call us if you need help getting off medications, or hopefully never getting on any medications.

 

Health and Wellness Associates

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Rx to Wellness, Uncategorized

How Statins Degenerate Your Brain Health

statins

 

How Statins Degenerate Your Brain Health

 

Tens of millions of people are taking drugs to lower their cholesterol levels. Most of those medications are in a drug class known as statins. Some doctors are even starting to recommend children use statin drugs to control their cholesterol levels.1 I couldn’t disagree more.

 

The challenge with statin drugs is that they address surface issues with cholesterol in a simplistic manner. But your body is a complex organism that uses cholesterol every day to build new cell walls, in the formation of vitamin D and in the production of hormones.

 

Statin drugs are HMG-CoA reductase inhibitors. They function by blocking the enzyme in your liver that naturally produces cholesterol for your bodily functions.

 

The drug essentially reduces your total cholesterol number, without addressing your high-density lipoproteins (HDL), low-density lipoproteins (LDL), very low-density lipoproteins (VLDL) or triglyceride levels.

 

While your total cholesterol number gives you a general overview, it isn’t the information needed to evaluate your risk of cardiovascular disease. Instead, you’ll need to compare your HDL, LDL, VLDL and triglyceride numbers against your total cholesterol.

 

Statins May Trigger Neuromuscular Disease

 

Statin drugs are notorious for causing side effects like muscle damage and weakness. What has been less publicized is a potential link between statins and a progression of muscle wasting that may lead to a diagnosis of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease.

 

The World Health Organization (WHO) Foundation Collaborating Centre for International Drug Monitoring receives safety reports associated with statin medications and has noted a disproportionately high number of patients with upper motor neuron lesions among those taking statin medications.2

 

The lead researcher, Ivor Ralph Edwards, is an expert in toxicology, acute and chronic poisoning and adverse drug reactions.3 He also is the senior adviser at the WHO Uppsala Monitoring Centre in Sweden, and he says:4

 

“We do advocate that trial discontinuation of a statin should be considered in patients with serious neuromuscular disease such as the ALS-like syndrome, given the poor prognosis and a possibility that progression of the disease may be halted or even reversed.”

 

Researchers from Johns Hopkins Medical School cautioned patients that although they discovered a link between taking statins and the development of a rare neuromuscular autoimmune disease, this condition could be treated with steroids and other immunosuppressive drugs.5

 

The researchers stated there was no need to fear this popular “fantastic medication.”6

 

Dr. Andrew L. Mammen, a neurologist who treats patients with statin-associated myopathies at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, is quoted in a Johns Hopkins press release saying, “Statins save a huge number of lives. They dramatically reduce the risk of strokes and heart attacks.”

 

The implication is you need statins in order to reduce your risk of heart attacks and strokes, and you should take them despite the risk for developing a degenerative neurological disease for which you will require medication to suppress your immune system.

 

This despite the knowledge that total cholesterol numbers are not indicative of your overall risk for cardiovascular disease. I would advise you to seriously evaluate the risks and benefits and consider your alternatives before you start taking a statin drug.

 

More Adverse Effects of Statins

 

 

 

In 2012 Golomb was recognized for a study she led on muscle and tendon adverse events linked to statins, which showed that muscle problems were related to the strength of the statin being taken.8

 

Other studies concur that side effects from statin drugs may be different for different patients depending upon your past medical history, the particular statin and the dose used.9

 

Research from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine suggests that research results have been “cherry-picked” so the results presented the best possible light for the drug company.10 According to Pacific Standard:11

 

“Sometimes the negative side effects of statins are downplayed, and conclusions can be skewed by the limited parameters of the trials. As a 2007 Scripps Mercy Hospital study noted:

 

‘The incidence of statin-induced rhabdomyolysis (acute breakdown of skeletal muscles) is higher in practice than in controlled trials because of the exclusion of potentially susceptible subjects.'”

 

Another study found 17 percent of patients suffered side effects that included muscle pain, nervous system problems and nausea.12 Two-thirds who reported side effects stopped taking the drugs and approximately half stopped at least temporarily.

 

A review of the literature, published in the American Journal of Cardiovascular Drugs, evaluated 900 previous studies looking at the adverse effects of statin drugs.13

 

Adverse effects are dose-dependent, and your health risks can be amplified by a number of factors, such as taking other drugs (which may increase statin potency), metabolic syndrome or thyroid disease. Some of the consequences of taking statin drugs in strong doses or for a lengthy amount of time include:14,15,16

 

Headache

Difficulty sleeping

Drowsiness

Bloating

Gas

Constipation

Rash

High blood sugar (type 2 diabetes)

Vision changes

Bladder pain

Difficulty breathing

Dry mouth

Lower back or side pain

Loss of consciousness

Swollen joints

Blistering or peeling skin

Weight changes

Cognitive loss

Neuropathy

Anemia

Acidosis

Frequent fevers

Cataracts

Sexual dysfunction

Pancreatic dysfunction

Immune system suppression

Polyneuropathy (nerve damage in hands and feet)

Liver dysfunction

Increased risk of cancer

Degenerative muscle tissue (rhabdomyolysis)

 

 

If You Feel You Must Take Statins You Need to Take Ubiquinol or CoQ10

 

Statins work by inhibiting the enzyme your liver uses to produce cholesterol. However, the same pathway may promote the suppression of the precursor to coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10), an antioxidant your mitochondria uses to produce energy. In theory, when your body is deficient in CoQ10, mitochondrial energy production is depressed, which may trigger or accelerate neuropathies like ALS.17

 

If you take statin drugs without taking CoQ10 or the reduced form, ubiquinol, your health may be at serious risk. Unfortunately, this describes the majority of people who take statins in the United States. The loss of energy at the cellular level can damage your mitochondrial DNA and set into motion a vicious cycle of rising free radicals and mitochondrial damage.

 

CoQ10 is an effective adjunct treatment for heart failure, an important piece of information as statins may decrease the function of your heart muscle.18 In this study researchers found the control group, those who were not taking statin drugs to protect their cardiovascular health, fared better.19 They concluded, “Statin therapy is associated with decreased myocardial function as evaluated with SI (strain imaging).”

 

The importance of your mitochondrial energy function can’t be overstated. Statin Study Group, led by Golomb, concluded the malfunction of mitochondrial energy production due to the interference of statin medications was the underlying causative factor in all of the adverse effects associated with the medication.

 

After reviewing the evidence, if you choose to take a CoQ10 supplement it’s important to take the form your body can easily assimilate.20 CoQ10 can typically be used by people 30 and younger. However, if you are over 30 you’ll want to consider ubiquinol, the reduced version of CoQ10, as it is far more effective.

 

LDL Particle Number More Important Than Total Cholesterol

 

It is likely the focus on lowering cholesterol has missed the boat completely, as high total cholesterol is not the cause of heart disease, unless it’s over 300. Other risk factors are much more powerful. One of the more important tests you may consider to determine your real risk of heart disease is the NMR LipoProfile, which measures your LDL particle number.

 

This particular test also includes markers to determine if you are insulin resistant, a primary cause of an elevated LDL particle number. When your insulin secretion rises, so does your cholesterol production. Elevated insulin levels, or a decrease in insulin sensitivity, is related to the foods you eat and your exercise. Two other blood test ratios that will tell you more about your cardiovascular disease risk are:

 

HDL to total cholesterol ratio. This is a fasting test and should be higher than 25 percent. It measures the amount of HDL you have against your total cholesterol number.

Triglyceride to HDL ratio, which should be below 2.

Health officials in the United States urge everyone over the age of 20 to have their cholesterol tested once every five years. Part of this test is your total cholesterol, or the sum of your blood’s cholesterol content, including HDL, LDLs and VLDLs.

 

Keep in mind these are still simply guidelines, and there’s a lot more that goes into your risk of heart disease than any one number can tell you. It was only after researchers found total cholesterol was a poor predictor of heart disease that HDL and LDL cholesterol were measured. They give you a closer idea of what’s going on, but they still do not show you everything.

 

Naturally Improve Your Cholesterol Levels

 

The only time there is a real reason to take medications to control your cholesterol level may be if you suffer from familial hypercholesterolemia. This is a genetic condition, passed down through your family. It begins at birth and affects your LDL levels, sometimes causing heart attacks at an early age.21

 

In other instances, your cholesterol can be controlled by making different lifestyle and nutritional choices. The fact is that 75 percent of your cholesterol is produced by your liver, which is influenced by your insulin levels.22,23 This means if you optimize your insulin levels you will also be optimizing your cholesterol levels. In order to safely regulate your blood sugar, insulin sensitivity and cholesterol levels it is important to modify your diet and lifestyle choices.

 

Optimize Your Vitamin D Levels

 

Sensible sun exposure will help normalize your cholesterol levels and prevent heart disease.24

Don’t take Vitamin D without talking to a healthcare professional about the type and amount you need to take for YOU.  If they don’t know, they will tell you to take anything you want. Also, ask is there anything you need to take with Vitamin D, because Vitamin can never be taken alone.

 

Normalize Your Weight and Reduce Carbohydrates, Especially Fructose

 

Normalize your weight using a plan of eliminating grains and sugars in your diet. Take special care to get no more than 25 grams of fructose each day. These products spike your insulin level and trigger the development of cholesterol. Ideally, you’ll also want to consume a good portion of your food raw.

Include Heart Healthy Foods

 

Make sure you are getting plenty of high-quality, animal-based omega-3 fats. Other heart-healthy foods include olive oil, coconut and coconut oil, organic raw dairy products and eggs, avocados, raw nuts and seeds, and organic grass-fed meats.

Increase Your Daily Movement and Exercise Regularly

 

While I strongly recommend incorporating Peak Fitness exercises, which also optimize your human growth hormone (HGH) production, non-exercise movement may be even more important. Ideally, stay active as much as you can each day. I recommend standing up at work, and try to get as much walking in as possible. Then, in addition to that, aim for a comprehensive fitness program that includes strength training and high intensity exercises.

Reduce Your Stress Levels

 

Each of us experience stress in a fast-paced life. You may consider addressing your emotional challenges using my favorite technique for stress management, Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT). You can easily learn to use these techniques at home and incorporate them even when you’re out and about.

Improve Your Sleep Quality

 

High quality sleep helps reduce your stress levels, normalize your insulin levels and function optimally through the day. If you have trouble falling asleep or staying asleep you may want to try some of the strategies in my previous article titled, “Want a Good Night’s Sleep? Then Never Do These Things Before Bed.”

Avoid Excessive Alcohol or Tobacco

 

Alcohol is high in net carbohydrates, which affect your insulin levels. Tobacco has an effect on your arterial system, temporarily raising your blood pressure.

Replace Vegetable Oils

 

Replace harmful vegetable oils and synthetic trans fats with healthy fats, such as olive oil, butter and coconut oil (remember olive oil should be used cold only; use coconut oil for cooking and baking).

Include Fermented Foods

 

Include fermented foods in your daily diet. These will not only optimize your intestinal microflora, which will boost your overall immunity, but will also introduce beneficial bacteria into your mouth. Poor oral health is another powerful indicator of increased heart disease risk.

 

Don’t Quess, ASK!

 

If you have any questions or need a healthcare plan just for you, then call us, set up an appointment and let us work together on this.

Health and Wellness Associates

Archived : JM

  1. Carrothers

312-972-WELL

Diets and Weight Loss

Forget Low Fat!

lowfat

Forget Low Fat!
Low fat everything has been the craze now for decades and look around. What has that wonderful bit of advice done for the bodies you see? We’re fatter, sicker, and more addicted to sugar and carbs than any other time in history. And, we’re passing these habits to our kids.
Fats are not to be feared – they’re to be embraced. They do not make you fat; rather, they help your body regenerate your power hormones. Testosterone, the ‘strength’ hormone, for example, is the direct result of cholesterol and dietary fat intake. That’s right: “Cholesterol” isn’t a dirty word! Your body needs dietary fat and cholesterol in order to produce ANY AND ALL vital hormones.
People on low fat diets look drawn, gaunt, and weak. They are often sick, sometimes to the point of literally breaking down. And, they can never just enjoy eating out. Every meal and every gram must be accounted for. Do you really think this will make you younger? Of course not… it will worry you to death if it doesn’t kill you first!
Health and Wellness Associates
Archived Article
312-972-WELL
Foods, Health and Disease

Lower Your Cholesterol

cinnamon

To Lower Your Cholesterol…..
Seasoning with 1/2 tsp. of cinnamon to your daily food intake,

could cut your total cholesterol levels 12% plus lower your artery

clogging LDL’s 7% or more, says yet another study done at the

Marylands Beltville Human Nutrition Research Center.
Please remember that those wonderful cinnamon sticks are

just rolled cardboard with a bit of cinnamon oil on them, and cinnamon

made in the United States is saw dust with cinnamon oil on it.  Please get

Vietnamese Cinnamon or Saigon Cinnamon.

So,please go to a reputable spice store to get your cinnamon.

Health and WEllness Associates

Archived

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Health and Disease, Rx to Wellness

Statins Should Be Used for a Limited Time

statinspic

Statins have become an overwhelmingly popular medication for treating high cholesterol, and for good reason. They do a great job of lowering LDL cholesterol in your blood, which is the bad form that can contribute to heart disease.  But statins, like any medication, should only be used after other measures have been taken to try and fix the problem. Here are three rules to think about before starting a statin.

Rule 1: Don’t Use Statins as a Band-Aid for Heart Disease

There are a number of reasons a person’s cholesterol can be high, but lifestyle factors play an important role in determining your cholesterol balance and levels. Exercise is one of the best ways to lower cholesterol, especially if your numbers are only borderline high. Cutting out processed foods and added sugar while adding in fruits and vegetables is also a great way to lower your numbers. Statins can lower your cholesterol, but they can’t change the factors that made it high in the first place. If you’re at risk for heart disease, work with your doctor to figure out how you got there and what you could do to lower that risk before going on a statin.

Rule 2: Try Lifestyle Changes for Three Months Before Taking a Statin

If you’ve found you have high cholesterol, you want to give yourself the best possible to chance to get it into the safe range and keep it there. Statins might be part of the strategy, but lifestyle factors have to be a key player for you to have the best shot at lowering your numbers and keeping them there. If your doctor mentions you may need a statin, say you’d like to try lifestyle changes for three months. Ask for your doctor’s help in figuring out how you can add exercise into your life and change your diet for the better. This gives you an opportunity to get to normal levels without needing to take a medication. The best part? Diet and exercise can drop your weight, lower your risk of diabetes, lower your blood pressure, improve your mood and pass on a variety of other benefits that can drop your heart disease risk while also improving your overall well-being. Statins only help with your cholesterol, and sometimes they don’t help at all, and cause a lot of other problems.

Rule 3: Weigh the Risks Against the Benefits

As with all medications, statins come with their own host of side effects. Fortunately, the negative side effects from statins are generally mild, and the more serious side effects like liver damage and muscle pain are rare. But there are risks and they should be weighed against the benefits. It’s important to remember that you’re the one who needs to do this weighing. After discussing the pros and cons of taking statins with your doctor, decide whether they seem worth it to you. And remember, you can change your mind at any time if you decide those costs or benefits have changed.

Statins were designed to only be used for one year, because of the permanent damage to your liver and kidneys.  If your cholesterol level has not been reduced in that amount of time, then other areas need to be explored as to what is causing your cholesterol level to be elevated.

If you need help with a situation like this, please call us

Feel free to share this with family and friends

Health and Wellness Associates

Archived Article : MO

312-972-WELL