I have always been concerned about the side effects of statin drugs. Years ago, physicians must have gotten crazy incentives from “big Pharma,” to push these things. Mitch and I recall one of our primary care physicians getting right in Mitch’s face about his resistance to taking them, when his cholesterol was just borderline at worst. My yearly visit had the same doctor telling me he was taking Lipitor even though his numbers were fine, suggesting a lower number was the goal, regardless. Huh? Really? It’s no small wonder I developed white coat syndrome, but that’s a whole other story.
For years I have been convinced the healthy number goal for cholesterol was lowered in an effort to put MANY more people on statins. If you read or listen to the fine print, statins are only proven to lower strokes and cardiac events in people WITH risk factors other than just a high number. Mitch’s number is always borderline, but he has NO risk factors. No family history, non-smoker, not obese. His cardiologist agrees that medication is not the answer, but does see him regularly to make sure he is exercising and maintaining a healthy weight. My biggest concern is actually for woman because studies consistently show that there are VERY few woman that will actually ward off cardiac conditions by taking statins. Then, last night’s news reported startling new findings. Woman on statins are twice as likely to develop type-2 diabetes. Type-2 diabetes is linked to heart disease. Do you see the irony here?
I am NOT suggesting that anyone simply take themselves off of these pills, but I am begging you to read and do your homework. By following a heart-healthy diet, limiting your animal protein intake and engaging in almost daily exercise, you may just find that your cholesterol numbers (and all your important numbers) rearrange themselves very nicely. As Dr. Oz always says, any medications or supplements that have the potential to help you, also have the potential to hurt you. Always look at the big picture and your OVERALL health.
Biggest Loser week 2 tonight. I hope I like it better than last week 🙂
- Statins May Raise Diabetes Risk in Older Women (webmd.com)