Big Pharma has done a great job. If you were to ask the majority of Americans what is the worst health danger out there, they would probably say high cholesterol levels. They have been well indoctrinated. And if they didn't say high cholesterol levels, the odds are pretty good that they would say diabetes. So isn't it ironic that the statin medications that Big Pharma has been pedaling for the past 25+ years to lower cholesterol can also cause diabetes? That is exactly what a new review study of statin drugs is now confirming.
The authors of the study looked at all of the various studies published between 2000 and 2013 that considered an association between statin medications and new cases of diabetes. Sure enough, the evidence is there. Men and women with "concomitant risk factors for diabetes" are being placed at risk for developing diabetes when they take statin drugs.
So what's a risk factor for diabetes? Amazingly enough, one is a high cholesterol and/or a high triglyceride. Another is being overweight. Another one is high blood pressure. And another one is a family history of diabetes. But wait a second. These are the exact same people who are often prescribed statins. Have we been manufacturing the diabetes epidemic these past two-plus decades by dishing out statins to high-risk people? The authors think it might be a problem.
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They say that the "current, available clinical data suggests a possible association between statin use and incident diabetes in patients with underlying diabetes risk factors." And they go on to say that, doctors "should vigilantly monitor" their patients on statin drugs and check repeatedly to see if they are getting diabetes from them. So if you are on a statin, your doctor is now supposed to regularly check you to see if he is giving you diabetes as a side benefit. But I have a better idea. How about forgetting about cholesterol levels in the first place?
Cholesterol doesn't cause heart disease anyway. Oxidized LDL cholesterol causes heart disease. We've known this for 30 years. If your cholesterol levels are high, but your oxidized LDL levels are low, you don't have a problem. Conversely, if your cholesterol levels are low, but your oxidized cholesterol is high, you do have a problem. Don't you need a statin drug then?
No you don't! And that's a really big problem for Big Pharma because they can't get a patent on the treatment. All you need to do is to drink pomegranate juice. About four to six ounces of pomegranate juice will correct just about every case there is of high oxidized LDL cholesterol. The authors of the study above say that, "Patients with a low risk of cardiovascular disease and high risk of diabetes should reconsider statin use and focus on lifestyle management." Once again, I can do much better. Just measure your oxidized LDL. If it's low, you don't have a problem, no matter how high your LDL or cholesterol levels are. If it is high, just go out and buy some pomegranate juice.
Yours for better health,
Frank Shallenberger, MD
Park ZH, Juska A, Dyakov D, et al. Statin-associated incident diabetes: a literature review. Consult Pharm. 2014 May;29(5):317-34.