Statins vs Diet & Lifestyle Changes!

by Anthony
(Lancashire)

QUESTION: I have been advised to start taking Statins by my practice nurse my cholesterol has increased in the past 3 years from 5.5 now at 6.3.

I do have a good diet, but I have a liking for cheese,Mayonnaise at least once a week. I eat various oily fish salads and plenty of veg.

I also have a beer about 20 units a week.I dine out approx twice a week be it a carvery beef and ham or meat pie and chips.

I am ten and half stone and walk several miles a week. Although I am prepared to give up the cheese and mayo and the carvery etc, I have been told it would not help much to reduce the cholesterol.

I do take tablets for blood pressure and that is under control and has been for a number of years.

Today in the Daily Mail there is a New alert over statin side-effects which does not make good reading and makes me think i would be much better taking all the steps I can myself in order to reduce my cholesterol level.

Please advise and thank you.


ANSWER: Hi Anthony,

As you have and currently taking medications for your high blood pressure; that could be a reason of your high lipid profile results.

Before going straight to the drugs; a physician would think over the factors that have bring the patient to such high levels.

As I do not have your full medical records; I would recommend to revise with your doctor the following:

- How far your high blood pressure and the pills you are taking for that, could interfere with lipid metabolism?

- Are you smoking? Are you a regular alcohol consumer? If yes, please change page and be away from them in order to keep your cholesterol numbers within the normal range.

- Please discuss with your doctor to set a target for your cholesterol and other blood fats. Your doctor will decide which the best target is most suitable to you according to your medical history (the one that I lack unfortunately).

To conclude, if you conduct a healthy lifestyle, follow a healthy diet strategy, controlling the medications you are taking; setting your own cholesterol goals, using certain herbs that are proven to lower high cholesterol levels; all these simple steps can help your achieve your goal without side effects.

Although statins have been shown to be efficient in lower blood cholesterol; however, they have their side effects (especially in destroying the muscles).

Therefore, I kindly ask you to sit and write down the benefits and undesirable effects of using statins or/and following the above-mentioned steps.

Discuss with your doctor for the best option (do not rely only on the word of a nurse although they might be capable; the doctor is the one who can decide better).

Hope it helped!

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