Debunking The Cholesterol Hypothesis

Barbecue meat on the grill

What’s Up With Cholesterol?

I’ve just finished the most incredible book. So incredible, that I had to share my notes with all of you. Yes, it’s longer than I normally write, but below are all the key points from Dr. Malcom Kendrick’s “The Great Cholesterol Con.” If you have any interest in the details about the so-called science behind cholesterol and statin drugs, then I would highly recommend reading this book.

Key Points Of The Book

After 11 years, the Surgeon General’s office in the US had found NO evidence whatsoever to support the diet-heart hypothesis. If you want to read more on this, look at Gary Taubes “The soft science of dietary fat” published in Science. That means, eat whole fat organic dairy and eat the whole egg, yes the yellow part too.

Long term use of statins for primary prevention of heart disease produced a 1% greater risk of death over ten years vs. placebo when the result of all the big controlled trials reported before 2000 were combined. Statins do not reduce mortality in men who do not already have diagnosed heart disease, which represents considerably more than 90 per cent of the male population.

What Statins Are Not

Statins not only have zero effect on overall mortality, they also have zero effect on reducing heart disease in women. So you get absolutely no benefits at all.

Statins do not reduce overall mortality in women
They do not reduce overall mortality in men without heart disease
And statins do not, therefore, reduce overall mortality in >95% of the adult population.

Our brain needs fat to function. In fact the brain contains over 25 per cent of the total amount of cholesterol in the body and over 2 per cent of the total weight of the brain is cholesterol. If you want the brain to function, this requires cholesterol. Without cholesterol, your brain cannot form synapses, and you can’t think properly, or remember anything.

In addition to cholesterol’s critical function in synapse formation, it has now been found that a low cholesterol level leads to reduced serotonin levels in the brain. A low serotonin level is one of the key brain abnormalities involved in depression. This is why the most commonly used anti-depressants are designed to boost serotonin levels.

Cholesterol For Thought

Did you know that an early sign of cancer is low cholesterol levels?

People with low cholesterol levels are at a much greater risk of dying of cancer
People with high cholesterol levels are less likely to die of cancer

Some disturbing facts:

  1. Statins cause cancer in animals
  2. There is some evidence that cancer deaths are increased in the statin trials, especially in those who are hyper-responders to statins
  3. A low cholesterol level is associated with a high risk of death from cancer
  4. It can take many, many years for cancer causing agents to reveal themselves

CoQ10 is found in all cells, everywhere in the body. It is found in particularly high concentrations in high energy cells such as muscles, and especially cardiac muscle cells, where it plays a key role in the production of ATP. ATP is what fuels the cell. When ATP runs out, the cell dies. This is serious, especially in the heart muscle, the muscle that can never rest. Both human and animal studies have shown that reduced CoQ10 levels can lead to left and right sided ventricular dysfunction (heart failure).

If low CoQ10 levels can lead to heart failure, and statins block the production of CoQ10, then statins could cause heart failure. Thus, adding CoQ10 to a statin makes perfect sense, does it not?

Statins reduce overall mortality in men with existing heart disease.

Heart Disease And Its Causes

So WHAT does cause heart disease?

1. Smoking. It increases cortisol levels and DHEA, the steroid hormone make in the adrenal glands in response to stress.
2. Lack of exercise. It’s important to choose exercise that you enjoy. Human beings need some exercise; if they don’t get it, they degenerate. They also become depressed, anxious and unhappy.
3. Too much or too little alcohol. Small amounts of alcohol taken with friends or sociably is healthy.
4. If you hate your job or have a bully for a boss. Don’t be a victim or feel trapped. Assert yourself and ensure that people give you the respect that you deserve.
5. Lack of friendships. Make a new friend. Join a club. Find an area of life that you enjoy and can enjoy in the company of other people. Praise other people and try to compliment people more often. Look forward to something enjoyable every day, every month and every year.

Good Stress vs Bad Stress

Everyone knows that stress kills. By the way, there is a great program on what stress does to the body that you can watch instantly on netflix. It’s from National Geographic and it’s called “Stress:Portrait of a Killer.” There are difference between good stress and bad stress.

Good stress:
rock climbing
passing an exam
clinching a successful business deal
organizing a social event
giving a well received lecture

Bad stress:
excessive, intense exercise in adverse conditions, eg. working in a coal mine
cocaine use
major surgery/trauma
steroid use
bullying boss
poor social network
suffering racism
money worries, long term debt

Ok, there you have it. If you are on a statin, you can stop without lowering the dosage first. In the case you have not been eating fat, start. Planning to continue on taking statin, then add a good nutritional supplement and CoQ10. I can help you with that, if you’d like.

Here are some more resources about cholesterol and health.

If you want to know more about the potential damage caused by trans fats, just search for Mary Enig. You may never eat margarine again!

Dangers of Statin Drugs: What You Haven’t Been Told About Popular Cholesterol-Lowering Medicines

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