New Guidelines Designed To Push More Statin Drugs

| July 16, 2015

When I entered my early-twenties, my grandfather once said to me: “Now that you’re standing on your own two feet and thinking for yourself, you’ll probably look back at some of the things I tried to teach you and I know in some instances you’ll find that I got it wrong.”

He was right… and at least he had the integrity and grace to admit to me and himself that he may have made some mistakes.

I can’t say the same about the medical mainstream and their obsession with statin drugs.

This is the latest statin-pushing headline that graced the newspapers recently: Wider use of cholesterol-lowering statin drugs could save more lives, two new studies show.

Now if that’s not a blatant advertorial for statin drugs, I don’t know what is.

The aim of these two recent ‘studies’ was to determine the potential impact of the new controversial cholesterol guidelines issued in 2013, by the the American Heart Association and the American College of Cardiology. These guidelines proposed to consider a person’s weight, age, blood pressure and other factors, including smoking or if the person had diabetes, to predict their chances of a heart attack or stoke. Previous guidelines, laid out in 2004, were based solely on a patient’s so-called “bad” cholesterol levels.

The 2004 guidelines included only a small portion of the statin drugs ‘market’. (Yes, sadly in the world of medicine patients are the ‘market’.) This meant that Big Pharma was losing out on billions of pounds because if you can only sell statin drugs to people with bad cholesterol, then you can only sell so many drugs…

But if you can sell statin drugs to patients who are older, overweight, have blood pressure problems, smoke (or used to) and suffer with diabetes? Well, that will increase your profit potential dramatically.

So, the answer is simple: Broaden the guidelines. Expand the market. Sell more drugs.

According to the findings of the two latest pro-statin studies, these new guidelines will increase the number of people taking statins by 8 to 12 million (in the US alone!). So, clearly Big Pharma’s plan to rake in more profits will work without a doubt… and after all that’s what it is all about. Money. It certainly is NOT about saving lives.

I’m not saying that smoking, being over weight, having high blood pressure and being at risk of diabetes aren’t risk factors for heart attack or stroke. Not at all.

What I am saying is this: Statins are not the answer!

Certainly not if you consider that statin drugs come with a diabetes warning… Not too long ago, the American Food and Drug Administration (FDA) slapped a big massive warning on statin drugs to warn patients about their increased risk of developing type 2 diabetes when taking these drugs… So why in heavens name, would anyone take this drug if they already suffer with diabetes?

There is also no scientific evidence proving that taking statin drugs will lower your risk of vascular events or heart disease. In fact, previous studies have linked low cholesterol levels with an increased risk of what is known as ‘haemorrhagic stroke’ (strokes caused by bleeding from blood vessels in the brain, rather than a blockage in these vessels). Some evidence even suggests that lowering cholesterol with statins can increase the risk of haemorrhagic stroke, therefore suggesting that low cholesterol levels may indeed cause this form of stroke…

Yet, you won’t see news headlines about these studies all over the papers.

The bottomline is: With what we know about statin drugs – all their horrendous side effects, including muscle loss, fatigue, depression, kidney and liver failure, memory loss… the list goes on – isn’t it time for the mainstream and Big Pharma to give up the ghost and admit that they were wrong about statin drugs… and VERY wrong about their entire cholesterol hypothesis?

A case in point:

Back in 1999, researcher Dr. David Tirschwell told a shocked group at the American Heart Association that those with cholesterol numbers under 180 were at double the risk of having a stroke than those who were in the 230 range.

Even back then, that wasn’t a brand new finding, either.

Over 30 years ago, Japanese researchers came to the same conclusion… and so did other Hawaiian researchers who did a long-term study on middle-aged men.

In fact, it appears that all sorts of diseases and conditions are linked to bargain-basement cholesterol numbers. Things like depression, suicide, heart attacks, strokes and Parkinson’s disease.

That’s probably because cholesterol plays an essential part in keeping you healthy. For one, cholesterol is a powerful antioxidant, which helps your body synthesise vitamin D. It is also required for hormone production and is a building block in every cell membrane of your body.

Now if too low cholesterol levels can cause so much damage to your health, then taking a cholesterol-lowering drug is almost certainly a death sentence… Wouldn’t we all just be better off ditching the statins, following a Mediterranean diet and taking a 30-minute walk daily, which has been shown to drop your risk of dying young by 50%. Plus, it will help reduce your osteoporosis risk, lower your blood pressure, and decrease your risk of developing diabetes.

Here's to keeping your heart strong and healthy

Francois Lubbe
Editor
for The Cholesterol Truth



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Bear in mind we are not addressing anyone’s personal situation and you should rely on this for informational purposes only. Please consult with your own physician before acting on any recommendations contained herein.


Sources:

“Study finds alternative to anti-cholesterol drug” Gina Kolata, November 17, 2014 The New York Times, nytimes.com

“Wider Use Of Cholesterol-Lowering Statin Drugs Could Save More Lives, Studies Show” published online, 14.07.15, techtimes.com

Cholesterol drugs may curb strokes among low-risk older adults, published online 19.05.15, uk.reuters.com/

Amerenco P, et al. High-dose atorvastatin after stroke or transient ischemic attack. NEJM 2006;355(6):549-59

Cholesterol, diastolic blood pressure, and stroke: 13,000 strokes in 450,000 people in 45 prospective cohorts. Prospective studies collaboration. Lancet 1995;346(8991-8992):1647-53.

Imamura T, et al. LDL cholesterol and the development of stroke subtypes and coronary heart disease in a general Japanese population: the Hisayama study. Stroke 2009;40(2):382-8

Varbo A, et al. Nonfasting triglycerides, cholesterol, and ischemic stroke in the general population. Annals of Neurology. Article first published online: 18 FEB 2011

Kannel WB, et al. Triglycerides as vascular risk factors: new epidemiologic insights. Curr Opin Cardiol. 2009 Jul;24(4):345-50.

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