With my cholesterol, triglycerides and blood pressure higher last month, I needed to try to salvage things before my doctor(s) advise statins and/or blood pressure medication. Step one: a lo-co lifestyle exercise and diet review (and correction):
Exercise. I’d let my exercise habit lapse in the past six months, so have recently re-started exercising daily. Of course today I pulled my hamstring. Sigh. But I am determined to at least walk daily, because ‘Study Proves Exercise Staves Off Bad Cholesterol.’
Diet – General. While I don’t eat a lot of red meat, I do eat a lot of carbs (pasta and bread) and sugar (M&Ms and wine).
If you take a cholesterol-lowering statin medication like Lipitor, you are likely familiar with statin side effects, including muscle issues and potential liver damage.
But did you know that taking a statin reduces the effectiveness of the flu vaccine?
Two new studies recently made that discovery. The studies were not small: four countries were involved, including the US, and almost 7,000 adults were evaluated. These two research studies concluded that adults who take statin medications had significantly reduced immune responses to the flu shot, compared with those who do not take statins. As well, the effectiveness at preventing serious respiratory illness was lower among adults taking statins.
In honor of Thanksgiving week, I’d like to thank (see what I did there?) Going Lo-Co reader Eileen S. for sharing both her experience and the cholesterol-lowering recipe she invented. Inspired in part by my post, Grapefruit Pros and Cons (which will forevermore be dubbed, ‘the post that keeps on giving’ as I wrote about grapefruit way back in 2013 and Eileen ran across it two years later!), Going Lo-Co blog reader Eileen S recently invented a new cholesterol-lowering recipe.
As you may recall, Grapefruit Pros and Cons is about the amazing fact that grapefruit – plain old grapefruit –
I am not a proponent of taking a statin to lower cholesterol IF one’s only heart disease risk factor is high cholesterol (see my post, Statin Statin, Do You Really Need A a Statin?) That said, there are millions for whom statin meds are a literal lifesaver. So if you are taking a statin because you have several heart disease risk factors, you might be hankering for some information about the different statin meds on the market. Here’s an overview of the top selling statins in the US.
The most common statins prescribed in the US include: Atorvastatin (Lipitor),
Lipitor, Pfizer’s blockbuster cholesterol-lowering statin medication, has been approved for use in children with heterozygous familial hypercholesterolemia in the US since 2002, according to Pharmafile. (FH is an “inherited disorder that leads to aggressive and premature cardiovascular disease”). And those with FH are likely in great need of Lipitor.
But FH is a pretty rare disease. And Pfizer’s putting a lot of effort into chewable Lipitor.
Is Pfizer is positioning itself to profit – at the expense of children – by inducing pediatricians to more broadly prescribe Lipitor for children?