When faced with the overwhelming evidence about the harm that statin drugs present,the question that many scientist and health care practitioners ask is "why are doctors still prescribing them?" It has been suggested that many doctors are stubborn and resistant to change, however since the statin drugs were introduced in 1989 they have become one of the most prescribed pharmaceutical drugs."Statins generated $34 billion in sales last year and have raked in a quarter of a trillion dollars since they were introduced two decades ago." according to Forbes magazine.
Perhaps the reason they are so widely prescribed is that manufacturers withheld some of the negative side effects such as COQ10 enzyme depletion, reversing the positive effects of exercise, and induced nutrient depletion by degradation of Intrinsic Factor in the digestive system.One big pharmaceutical company patented a statin/coq10 drug when their research showed the depletion of this vital coenzyme, but since the FDA did not require the inclusion, the drug was never brought to the market, even though their own research showed it to dangerously depleted this vital enzyme.. So,maybe our doctors are not bull headed but are instead being led astray by big pharmaceutical companies.Here are some interesting facts.
Statins have been almost universally hailed as “wonder drugs” by medical authorities around the world. The market for statins was $26 billion in 2005, and sales for Lipitor alone reached $14 billion in 2006. Merck and Bristol Myers-Squib are actively seeking “over-the-counter” (OTC) status for their statin drugs. Statins are prescribed to men and women, children and the elderly, people with heart disease and people without heart disease.
In fact, these drugs have a reputation for being so safe and effective that one UK physician, John Reckless (I’m not kidding – that’s actually his name!) has suggested that we put statins in the water supply.
That’s a bold suggestion, of course, and it begs the question: are statins really as safe and cost effective as mainstream medical authorities claim? The unequivocal answer is no.
Statins also interfere with the mevalonate pathway, which is the central pathway for the steroid management in your body. This too could be a contributing factor as to why statins have such a detrimental impact on your ability to reap health benefits from exercise. As previously explained by Dr. Ron Rosedale:
Statins don’t increase survival in healthy people
"First and foremost, cholesterol is a vital component of every cell membrane on Earth. In other words, there is no life on Earth that can live without cholesterol. That will automatically tell you that, in and of itself, it cannot be evil. In fact, it is one of our best friends. We would not be here without it. No wonder lowering cholesterol too much increases one's risk of dying. Cholesterol is also a precursor to all of the steroid hormones. You cannot make estrogen, testosterone, cortisone, and a host of other vital hormones without cholesterol."
Statins have never been shown to be effective in reducing the risk of death in people with no history of heart disease. No study of statins on this “primary prevention population” has ever shown reduced mortality in healthy men and women with only an elevated serum cholesterol level and no known coronary heart disease. (CMAJ. 2005 Nov 8;173(10):1207; author reply 1210.) Statins do reduce the risk of heart attacks in this population, but the reduction is relatively modest:Statins don’t increase survival in women
Despite the fact that around half of the millions of statin prescriptions written each year are handed to female patients, these drugs show no overall mortality benefit regardless of whether they are used for primary prevention (women with no history of heart disease) or secondary prevention (women with pre-existing heart disease). In women without coronary heart disease (CHD), statins fail to lower both CHD and overall mortality, while in women with CHD, statins do lower CHD mortality but increase the risk of death from other causes, leaving overall mortality unchanged. (JAMA study)Statins don’t increase survival in the elderly
The only statin study dealing exclusively with seniors, the PROSPER trial, found that pravastatin did reduce the incidence of coronary mortality (death from heart disease). However, this decrease was almost entirely negated by a corresponding increase in cancer deaths. As a result, overall mortality between the pravastatin and placebo groups after 3.2 years was nearly identical.
This is a highly significant finding since the rate of heart disease in 65-year old men is ten times higher than it is in 45-year old men. The vast majority of people who die from heart disease are over 65, and there is no evidence that statins are even effective in this population.Do statins work for anyone?
Among people with CHD or considered to be at high risk for CHD, the effect of statins on the incidence of CHD mortality ranges from virtually none (in the ALLHAT trial) However, the use of statins in this population is not without considerable risk. Statins frequently produce muscle weakness, lethargy, liver dysfunction and cognitive disturbances ranging from confusion to transient amnesia. They have produced severe rhabdomyolysis that can lead to life-threatening kidney failure.Aspirin just as effective as statins (and 20x cheaper!)
Perhaps the final nail in the coffin for statins is that a recent study in the British Medical Journal showed that aspirin is just as effective as statins for treating heart disease in secondary prevention populations – and 20 times more cost effective! Aspirin is also far safer than statins are, with fewer adverse effects, risks and complications.
Statins do harm by depleting COQ10 Enzyme
The key to understanding why statins prevent your body from reaping the normal benefits from exercise lies in understanding what these drugs do to your mitochondria,the energy chamber of your cells, responsible for the utilization of energy for all metabolic functions.
The primary fuel for your mitochondria is Coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10), and one of the primary mechanisms of harm from statins in general appears to be related toCOQ10 depletion. This also explains why certain statin users in the featured trial ended up with worse aerobic fitness after a steady fitness regimen.
It's been known for many decades that exercise helps to build and strengthen your muscles, but more recent research has revealed that this is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the potential role exercise can play in your
A 2011 review published in Applied Physiology, Nutrition and Metabolismpointed out that exercise induces changes in mitochondrial enzyme content and activity (which is what they tested in the featured study), which can increase your cellular energy production and in so doing decrease your risk of chronic disease.
The researchers stated:
"Increasing evidence now suggests that exercise can induce mitochondrial biogenesis in a wide range of tissues not normally associated with the metabolic demands of exercise. Perturbations [changes] in mitochondrial content and (or) function have been linked to a wide variety of diseases, in multiple tissues, and exercise may serve as a potent approach by which to prevent and (or) treat these pathologies."
Increasing mitochondrial activity is incredibly important because free radicals, which are toxic byproducts of metabolism as well as exposures to chemicals, pollutants and other toxins, can overwhelm your body's defenses, leading to oxidative damage to cells and tissues that can destroy cellular proteins, lipids and DNA, as well as lead to the loss of mitochondrial function. In the long-term, irreversible damage in the mitochondria can occur, leading to:
- Lower threshold for physical exercise
- Impaired ability to utilize carbohydrates and fat for energy
- Insulin resistance
- Excessive weight gain
- Accelerated aging
First, if you are a woman, it's critical for you to know that statins are classified as a "pregnancy Category X medication" meaning,it causes serious birth defects, and should NEVER be used if you're pregnant or planning a pregnancy. Last year, the US Food and Drug Administration9 (FDA) also announced it's considering additional warning labels for statin drugs. Among them are warnings that statins may increase your risk of:
- Over coming the damage to muscle depletion has been a huge challenge for those providing physical therapies and rehabilitation.
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