Cholesterol lowering drugs are some of the most profitable drugs ever made. That’s as result of a couple of factors. Firstly it’s because cholesterol lowering drugs are being prescribed to more and more people as our population gets more and more unhealthy, and higher and higher cholesterol levels.
And the second reason why cholesterol lowering drugs are so profitable is that the majority of people who go onto cholesterol lowering drugs like statins is that once they are using them most people will need to continue using them for the rest of their lives.
And if you start on statins at, say, 35, you may be using them for many years.
So for many it’s a serious decision to start taking cholesterol lowering drugs like statin drugs, and there are many who, understandably, question what the risks are of taking drugs to lower your cholesterol levels.
Because, as it’s been said, just about any drug has side effects.
Statins are in wide use in our community today. And for many people they have produced the desired effect, lowering their cholesterol levels. However they do not come without a price. There do seem to be risks associated with the use of statins, and more and more people are looking for alternative, and more natural ways to lower cholesterol, naturally.
The risks associated with statins, whilst not proven, at least to the satisfaction of the pharmaceutical companies that make them, include muscle pain and weakness, or what is known as rhabdomyolysis. Studies have suggested that over 90% of patients taking one statin drug, Lipitor, suffered from muscle problems. The industry admits to only 2% to 3%.
If you look for forums where people can post their experiences with the use of these cholesterol lowering drugs you’ll see hundreds of complaints about the side effects of statins. Of course these forums do not represent scientifically proven side effects, however do demonstrate the severity of the discontent amongst those taking statins with the effects of these drugs on their health.
And the risks of statins isn’t just restricted to muscle pain and weakness. Other side effects could include such serious repercussions as permanent nerve damage, heart failure, dizziness, cognitive impairment and even cancer. And there’s more.
So clearly it isn’t shown that taking statin drugs to lower cholesterol is entirely safe.
But what about the grapefruit effect?
Well scientist have known for some time that eating grapefruit can increase the effects of certain drugs, including statins, and produce potentially hazardous results. It’s not entirely clear why. But certainly it can increase the levels of the drug in the bloodstream, and if you’re worried about the side effects in the first place increasing the levels of drug in your bloodstream may not be the best idea.
So clearly, if you’re using statins, don’t eat grapefruit.
And if you’re not, and your doctor has told you that your cholesterol levels are high, and that you may be risking heart disease or even a heart attack unless you take some steps towards better cardiovascular health, what options do you have?
There are steps you can take to attempt to address the problem of high cholesterol without resorting to the risks associated with statins. Lifestyle changes, including changes in diet, including more fresh fruit and vegetables, and an increase in exercise levels, can all help, though rarely are a complete answer, as much of your total cholesterol is actually made in your body.
And modern science is finding safe natural substances that can be very effective in lowering cholesterol naturally, without resorting to cholesterol lowering drugs. If used in conjunction with lifestyle changes these natural cholesterol lowering supplements can produce an effect which will both eliminate the necessity to take the risks of side effects associated with statins, and will usually be way cheaper over time.
So if you’re looking for ways to lower your cholesterol, be aware that statins do have side effects. And over time one of the worst side effects is the massive cost of being on them long term.
And there are more natural alternatives to cholesterol lowering drugs.
Oh, and stay off grapefruit.