Cholesterol is needed by EVERY cell in your body. The body wouldn’t be able to make cholesterol if it wasn’t necessary in the scheme of things! It is necessary for hormone and isoprenoid production and these are vital for life!
Statins (cholesterol medication) action is to block the process of cholesterol and isoprenoid production via the mevalonate pathway. This pathway enables cell growth and the replication of DNA. The replication of DNA is what needs to happen for cell division and cell division is necessary for life.
This very abbreviated explanation comes from a summary of a book “How statin drugs really lower cholesterol: and kill you one cell at a time” by James and Hannah Yoseph. The lit review of the book is by Zoe Harcombe. See the link below.
More information about keeping you informed.
How to read your cholesterol blood results.
On the report there should be a breakdown of different results. These are:
- Total cholesterol – as it states. This number on its own means very little without the breakdown of the total and sometimes this can be the only result the lab sends back to the GP.
- LDL – this stands for low density lipoprotein – this is made in the liver and is produced when the body is stressed. If it is deemed this level is too high, this can be improved by improving your diet to whole foods, and making changes to bring in more calm and relaxation into your life. It is seen as “bad cholesterol” in mainstream – but it has a very real function in the body and it is just as harmful for the level to be too low.
- HDL – this stands for high density lipoprotein – if this is too low then the best food source are the good oils eg. olive oil, avocado etc – the essential fatty acids. Unfortunately for some, if they have had their gall bladder removed any oil intake can be difficult/painful. Also, some doctors will tell their patients to stop taking fish oils as it can have consequences with some blood thinners. It is the blood thinners that should have to work in with the fish oils – not the other way around! I did actually meet a patient who had that attitude and a balance was reached.
- Triglycerides – this is all about what you eat. If this is raised, then it is up to you what changes you make but you do have changes to make if you want to choose good health.
- Cardiac Risk Ratio – based on the ratio of the above results gives an indicator of your heart health.
At the end of the day, what is really important is that we learn to manage the stresses in our lives. The word ‘stress‘ in this context is anything that upsets our body from operating at it’s best.
Therefore, if your diet could be adjusted to low sugar and starch carbohydrate intake (think ketogenic diet) – one slice of bread has equal effect on the body as 6 tsp of sugar (http://www.wheatbelly.com). Judge your food by how much human intervention was required before you eat it (excluding the farmer – although consider what chemicals he/she may have used!).
Be aware that any carbonated drinks – from soda water to champagne and all those sugary/diet soda drinks in between – will have a negative effect on how your stomach can perform in breaking down food. The bubbles immediately raise the pH in your stomach. We need the pH to be low enough (very acidic) to start the breakdown of proteins. Without the adequate breakdown of proteins your body has difficulty making hormones and neurotransmitters. If you suffer reflux/heartburn it is more likely that your stomach isn’t acid enough rather than too acidic. There’s a whole other story to write about Proton Pump Inhibitor medications and how they contribute to the down hill slide of our health. They also raise the pH to minimise symptoms but do nothing for the cause and have their own host of side effects.
Look at the side effects of the medications you are taking. See the Better Health Channel link further down to assist that search. When you develop a new symptom that can be immediate or take a couple of weeks for the impact to develop think back to the possibility of it being a side effect.
A GP told me several years ago, there is a professional expectation placed on them that if an individual is diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes, then within 12 months that individual could/should be on 5 different medications. Four medications for the side effects of one of the others! I hope this isn’t the first time you have read this but Type 2 Diabetes is reversible by making lifestyle changes. I have sat through Diabetic education delivered by Diabetes Educators who teach Practice Nurses and patients alike that their condition is now lifelong. They are following the guidelines from Diabetes Australia and my research and experience has shown this “fact” not to be true. Sure, if you go back to bad habits the symptoms will return but you can live without the symptoms of Type 2 Diabetes even if you once had it as a diagnosis.
There are some very good texts out there that will help anyone gain information on this type of medication and I encourage everyone to read up and understand what they are about. Authors include Dr Sandra Cabot and Dr Peter Dingle to name a couple. There are some great You Tube presentations by well qualified individuals. Watch the sites that you go to to ensure the information is reliable. A very helpful website to all things healthy but not necessarily aligned with the mainstream way of thinking is http://www.greenmedinfo.com/
If you want to check side effects to medication you may be taking, the site I use the most for my clients is www.betterhealth.vic.gov.au – put in the drug name and click on the PDF option. Here you will get a patient-friendly extract from MIMS (the guide the doctors use) although I suspect it doesn’t contain all the information your doctors have access to.
I smile when I see shared on Facebook the memes that say something like – “disregard my medical / nursing / whatever degree or so many years of study because you know more through Google”. The thing is, if you have done your research – you can then formulate the questions you want answered. I see this as taking responsibility – but also take responsibility for finding out from more than one credible source. This is not easy, is very time consuming and at the end of the day can be confusing.
Cabot, S. & Jasinska, M. (2011). Cholesterol – the real truth. Australia.
Davis, W. (2014). Wheat Belly. HarperCollins.
Harcombe, Z. (2016). How statin drugs really lower cholesterol & kill you one cell at a time (Review). www.zoeharcombe.com