Statin drugs are among the most frequently used popular prescription drugs in the world, raking in sales of over $35 billion—that’s right billion—a year.
For what? They purport to lower cholesterol and thereby prevent heart attacks. In fact they do lower cholesterol, but the evidence linking statins to heart attack prevention has been called into question by many authorities including my friends, cardiologist Stephen Sinatra Ph.D. nutrition expert Jonny Bowden in their book, The Great Cholesterol Myth.
I’ve also written on this topic here on my blog – http://kathleenbarnes.com/cholesterol-lie/
Despite all of those 200 million prescriptions for cholesterol-lowering drugs (not all of them statins) written in 2008 (the latest data I could find), heart disease is still the #1 killer in the Western world. So what good is it?
Well, it’s doing a lot of good for the drug companies, Big Pharma, are doing just great. They have raked in a quarter of a trillion dollars—that’s $250 billion—since the drugs were introduced in the 1990s.
But the dangers of these drugs are daunting.
The FDA has issued four warnings about the side effects of these drugs. They can cause:
- Liver damage
- Memory loss
- Muscle damage
I want to spend a little time examining the memory loss element of statins today. I’ll touch a bit on diabetes, too, since they are closely linked. We’ll hit the others in future articles.
Memory loss, confusion and forgetfulness are among the side effects among statin users reported to the FDA. They span all ages and all types of statin drugs.
The FDA admitted it had been tracking reports of memory loss among statin users for several years before it issued its warning.
“In general,” the FDA warning reads, “The symptoms were not serious and were reversible within a few weeks after the patient stopped using the statin. Some people affected in this way had been taking the medicine for a day; others had been taking it for years.”
In addition, the FDA recommends against stopping statins drugs even if symptoms of memory loss are experienced because “the consequences to your heart could be far greater.”
Let’s add diabetes into the mix briefly here: Alzheimer’s disease (extreme and irreversible cognitive impairment) has lately been called “type 3 diabetes” because recent studies confirm that insulin resistance found in type 2 diabetes also affects brain cells. We also know that non-diabetics are twice as likely to develop dementia as non-diabetics.
Put those pieces together and the use of statin drugs by people with diabetes becomes a completely unreasonable risk.
Oh yes, people with diabetes have a high risk for heart disease. They still die of heart disease at an alarming rate, despite the almost universal physician insistence that they “need statin drugs.”
The underlying cause of heart disease, especially among people with diabetes, will have to wait for a future article, but let me say unequivocally here: Heart attacks are not caused by high cholesterol. There is abundant research to prove this.
Follow the money. You know why these drugs are still universally prescribed for people with diabetes and for many people over 60, “just because” doctors believe the drugs will prevent heart attacks. They even want to expand the parameters around which the drugs are prescribed to expand their usage and Big Pharma’s market. They really think we’re stupid.
Back to memory loss and statin drugs: British published a year ago research shows that animals given stains for just 18 days suffered impaired memory.
In his book, Lipitor: Thief of Memory, Dr. Duane Graveline, a medical doctor and former NASA astronaut, writes about his terrifying bout with sudden amnesia after he began taking Lipitor.
Dr. Graveline is not alone in his reports to the government’s adverse reaction database.
The science is a little complicated, but it’s based on the idea that ¼ of the body’s cholesterol is found in the brain. Cholesterol is needed for many body functions, including brain function. Lowering cholesterol reduces the available amount of cholesterol available for brain function, so your brain doesn’t work as well.
Now, I’ll warn you: Doctors will say you are crazy to stop taking statin drugs. That’s what I experienced form my husband’s doctor a year ago.
I submit that doctors are being brainwashed by Big Pharma to protect those precious profits are the risk of our health.
I think it’s crazy to keep taking drugs with these kinds of side effects.