Statin Side Effects: Do the Benefits Outweigh the Risks? What Can be Added to your Protocol to Benefit Your Health?
Statins have been becoming so popular over the years, there are so many; atorvastatin (Lipitor), fluvastatin (Lescol), lovastatin (Altoprev), pitavastatin (Livalo), pravastatin (Pravachol), rosuvastatin (Crestor) and simvastatin (Zocor) just to name the most popular. Many doctors are quickly prescribing statins due ever changing more stringent protocols for standards of care.
Unfortunately with such highly effective medications acting directly on the liver, the patients are experiencing a host of side effects. While most patients notice the side effect of muscle pains described mostly as soreness, stiffness, weakness all the way to life-threatening muscle damage called rhabdomyolysis (rab-doe-my-OL-ih-sis). Rhabdomyolysis can cause severe muscle pain, liver damage, kidney failure and even death. The minor symptoms of muscle pain may be alleviated by a lower dose if that’s possible or a change of medication and always a 100mg or more of CoQ10 (ubiquinol) every day.
But what about the side effects that are more subtle? Mental issues……this may start out as mental fuzziness or forgetfulness. Is this a warning? The brain (2% of your body weight) contains 20% of the bodies cholesterol……how could it not be effected? The cholesterol metabolism of the brain is so understudied so how are we sure of the effect of sometimes drastic decreases these Statins have on cholesterol and sphingomyelin (phosholipids that cover the nerves) which are vital to the brain function?
Here are the symptoms the FDA has now added labeling information as a safety announcement for Stain Drugs in 2012.
- Memory loss
- Memory impairment
- Mental “fuzziness”
- Decreased ability to concentrate
- Loss of focus
- Amnesia (partial and complete)
So what if these drugs are necessary according to your physician. We can make some suggestions to support that cholesterol loving organ, your brain.
- First, insist on follow-up blood testing. This ensures that you are on the right dose of the medication. Why take more than you need? The least amount possible to get the results needed is ALWAYS best. Insist!
- Take Brain Supporting Supplements. Most importantly Phosphatidylcholine (PC) Supplements. We recommend soy free PC if possible. About 1000mg per day.
- With permission from your physician and a Ketogenic Diet (see link to my blog on keto) maybe you can substitute a natural cholesterol maintenance supplement, Red Yeast Rice (RYR) 1200mg per day. We suggest organic RYR. Please work with your prescriber on this. Taking both the supplement and the RX may be too much and there may need to be adjustments to dosages or either or both. (this is why blood testing is so important)
Please let us know if you have any questions or need any help with a protocol. Private counseling is always available. 1-888-908-0804