Taking Statins? Beware!

Sometimes blind faith leads to a disaster, sometimes a miracle.
Where will you end up?

If you’re one of the millions of people diagnosed with high cholesterol, you will more than likely be given a prescription “statin” pill. It’s easier to take a statin, truly I get it, it’s hard to control diet and to exercise and to live a life of limitations after all this time. For a satirical look at what you need to do before taking a statin, read my quick (and somewhat silly) scenario at the doctor’s office here. 
Now, let’s get back to the statins, these work well to reduce cholesterol:
-Lovastatin for Mevacor
-Atorvastatin for Lipitor
-Pravastatin for Pravachol
-Fluvastatin for Lescol
-Simvastatin for Zocor
-Pitavastatin for Livalo
-Rosuvastatin for Crestor
-Others in combination form

What do they do?

Statins affect many pathways in the body. They are strong anti-inflammatories, so strong that they are being tested for their use in cancer patients! As for cholesterol reduction, they work by crushing a natural enzyme in your body that would otherwise allow you to make your own cholesterol.

Statins do not suck out gooey cholesterol from your arteries, nor does it negate cheese fries.

No, these drugs merely suppress new production of cholesterol. Here’s where blind faith (take this pill and you’ll feel better) collides with scientific research.

This year a study was published (in the Expert Review of Clinical Pharmacology), entitled,
Statins stimulate atherosclerosis and heart failure: pharmacological mechanisms. Repeat: “Statins stimulate atherosclerosis and heart failure.” Whoa!

The researchers concluded, “The epidemic of heart failure and atherosclerosis that plagues the modern world may paradoxically be aggravated by the pervasive use of statin drugs.” What an irony! The problem is that many other studies have found similar disastrous effects on the heart. It has to do with mitochondrial dysfunction, which means that the little generators in your heart cells get sick.

Your heart is a very high energy muscle. It requires thriving, mitochondria in order to churn out ATP, your energy molecule. Statins are toxic to mitochondria because they deplete coenzyme Q10 which is needed for healthy mitochondria. Statins also deplete a special protein called “Heme A” that totes oxygen and iron to your heart. The long-term depletion interrupts ATP production and leads to cellular fatigue among other major problems. You cannot survive long-term without adequate ATP production so it needs to be restored. Fatigue, cramps, muscle weakness, memory loss, depression, cancer … you must have ATP in your body or else! (Biting my lip)

Statins inhibit the biosynthesis of vitamin K2 which we manufacture if we have healthy intestinal gut flora.
Do you?
I don’t know anyone who has a perfect gut. K2 also comes from fermented veggies. It protects our arteries from calcium plaques or atherosclerosis. Without enough K2, statin-induced or not, we are compromised. (Eyes rolling now).

Today, we know statins block very special, powerful selenium-containing proteins known as selenoproteins, the most famous of those is called glutathione peroxidase, which protects muscle tissue from free radical damage (oxidation).

What’s the busiest muscle in your body? It has to work 24/7. It’s your heart! (Smacks forehead).

Your heart muscle cells are ‘burned’ form all the oxidation (due to the impairment of selenoprotein biosynthesis) and this is a factor in congestive heart failure. This reminds me of Keshan’s disease which is heart failure due to low selenium.

If you have to take statins, please use the lowest dose possible. Be diligent about putting back the nutrients that statins interfere with such as the coenzyme Q10, selenium, and vitamin K2, along with other heart healthy nutrients. There are exceptions to taking these nutrients so ask your doctor (yes, the same one that gave you the statin.)

This is a classic case of drug mugging, and I hope you will consider replenishing some of the affected nutrients, especially if you have uncomfortable or new symptoms.  I wrote about this in my book, Drug Muggers.  Remember to talk to your physician about dosages of these vitamins, because it is highly individual; dosages vary from person to person based upon age, sex, weight, kidney or liver function, even genetic SNPs and much more.  Also, keep in mind how important nutrients are in your body. Your body runs on the essentials, it does not run because of medication. As an example, if you have low levels of a natural B vitamin (folate) then you cannot properly methylation. If your methylation pathways are hindered, your toxins build up and your cholesterol ratios are adversely affected.  There are over 200 drugs that reduce folate, all discussed and listed in my Drug Muggers book.   For that matter, there are many SNPs that cause illness, or personality quirks and traits, so read my article on “Genes, Methylation and Your Health” right now. Please be sure to leave me your comments below, on my forum where we can discuss things together and help one another. Everyone, chime in! 

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2015-04-08T17:24:42+00:00

166 Comments

  1. Jim merrill April 8, 2015 at 6:10 pm - Reply

    I have switched from zocor to red yeast rice 600mg with 15mg CoQ10.

    Is the red yeast rice a ‘supplement’ version of a statin with similar results
    as the synthetic statins.

  2. Judy Curtis April 8, 2015 at 6:19 pm - Reply

    Oh, thank you for this great information.

  3. Nancy April 8, 2015 at 6:20 pm - Reply

    Because I am being treated for hypertension and high cholesterol, when I take the coenzyme Q10, it drops my BP to low values. What do you recommend? I am already at the lowest dose for the statin I take. Verapamil and Lipitor use the same pathway in the liver, so if my doctor changes either drug, including switching to generics, my blood pressure really changes.

    • Denny April 9, 2015 at 7:49 am - Reply

      Hi im no doctor, but what happens to your blood pressure if you stop hypertension meds and just consume coenzyme Q10 and Lipitor? If that brings down your blood pressure to normal, maybe you can ask your doctor if you can stop the Verapamil?

      Just my 2 cents…

  4. Alicia Lameka April 8, 2015 at 6:24 pm - Reply

    I take Lovsa 3mg. twice a day, I also take cq10, and selenium. I take many other supplements.. My eye doctor told me the Lovas was helping my eyes. My vision has not change in 3years. I’m 77yrs. old and feel very good altho in Fefurary Of 2013 I suffer pneumonia and cardiac failure, after a trip in January to Chicago. They found I had A-fib and I had a ablastion done. I feel okay but it took a long time to get my strength back. I don’t know why they keep me on Lovas as my ldl and hdl are both normal and my count is 212. I have your Drug Mugger book and it has been very helpful. I told my Doctor to buy it.

  5. Denise April 8, 2015 at 6:27 pm - Reply

    Also don’t be afraid to ask your doctor your cholesterol numbers after every blood test……sometimes ,as in my case………
    Doctors write a script for statin drug and cholesterol numbers are fine….keep your own medical file with information in it …..bring it with you every doctor visit…..along with your list of vitamins and supplements your are taking….make a list for your doctor to keep for his records also.
    And Suzy your information is spot on thank you .

  6. Mike Gardner April 8, 2015 at 6:28 pm - Reply

    Liptor is evil.
    Several years ago I visited my family dr. I wore shorts because I had an oozy varicose vein I intended to ask him about. I forgot it, he didn’t notice it. Despite the fact he knew I was already on Depakote DR (250 mg x 2 AM, 250mg x 3 PM) he gave me a large quantity of Lipitor samples for my Type 4 hyperlipidemia and a large quantity of DayPro for my knees (hyper mobile joints all over). About a week later I was working out of state when the varicose vein ruptured as I was applying a bandaid.
    Fifteen minutes later I would have been asleep and never known why I bled out. After direct pressure and ice stopped the bleeding I read the package circulars. Both Lipitor and DayPro interfere with platelets and clotting. I already knew valproic acid does. Trifecta! Quit taking Lipitor and DayPro and found another doctor. I use WebMD to check all new meds for interactions, especially against Depakote. I’ve remained seizure free about 25 years.

  7. Ronnie April 8, 2015 at 6:28 pm - Reply

    My doc is always complaining about my high cholesterol and wants me on statins. But surely if you have a healthy lifestyle, re food and exercise etc., then there could be other causes e.g. hypothyroidism – wish they would get their act together and actually treat that properly instead of just dolling out T4 and statins. Thanks for all your articles, always interesting.

  8. Cathy April 8, 2015 at 6:29 pm - Reply

    I have been taking Prevastatin for two years. I have since been diagnosed with Schamburg’s disease. Is it possible the Statin could be causing Schamburg’s?

  9. Ed Loder April 8, 2015 at 6:30 pm - Reply

    Had bypass surgery in 1989 . Blockage was at the branching of the anterior heart artery and required double bypass to feed branches. 26 years, no problems with it. was introduced to cholesterol and tried several things to reduce cholesterol to little effect. Started Lipitor in 1991 at Cholesterol Clinic, Cincinnati, OH, 10 mg/da. Total cholesterol dropped to 110 to 120 in short time but HDL was only 30. Tried many HDL enhancing recommendations and today its about 34.
    Still at 10 mg. Have wondered for years if other aches and pains were associated with statins, discussed with several Drs over the years and was advised best to stay with exoerience. So here I am today at 90 with little arthritis in hands, peripheral neuropathy aggravated by ankle surgery. All the aches and pains of old age, but nothing terminal. Thank God every morning I wake up for another day.

    • Ed Loder April 8, 2015 at 6:32 pm - Reply

      Thank you.

  10. Hank Levine April 8, 2015 at 6:34 pm - Reply

    Fourth request; Coconut Water, yes or no.

    • Suzy Cohen April 9, 2015 at 12:46 am - Reply

      Hank I haven’t seen your other 3 requests (?) please note I get thousands of questions per day from all different angles, and there’s just ONE OF ME 🙂
      YES, love coconut water.

  11. Kay April 8, 2015 at 6:56 pm - Reply

    I just want to thank you, my husband was taking crestor @5MG he started having all the systems that are talked about I did my research and found natural supplements that help with his cholesterol. He is feeling much better and I feel like I will have him around a lot longer Thanks Again

    • Rebecca April 9, 2015 at 2:14 am - Reply

      What was the natural supplements?

  12. Lisa H April 8, 2015 at 6:58 pm - Reply

    I was a healthy person until a doctor decided my cholesterol was too high and put me on statin drugs. I was given several, then switched to Crestor when it came out, told that it targeted high triglycerides and would UP my HDL – the good cholesterol. Instead my HDL bottomed out and my trigs more than doubled, going nearly off the chart! My doctor’s answer? Up my Crestor dose to 40 mg a day!

    My complaints about side effects were ignored. Everything from GI issues to headache to incredible leg cramps were put off with other causes – my diet was faulty, I didn’t get enough exercise, I’ve had headaches and migraine since I was 17 but suddenly they were just “getting worse with age; a lot changes once you pass 40 you know.” (Yeah, historically, migraines should decrease after 40, not increase.) At one point, I was so sick that I lost 40 pounds in less than a month from not being able to eat; my doctor congratulated me even while pumping me full of Zofran to try to stop my nausea!

    Then the Powers That Be kept lowering the numbers that required you through be prescribed a statin. When they first came out, your overall cholesterol had to be over 300, then it was 240, then 180, then 150. When this kind of thing happens over my adult lifetime, I start to wonder who is kidding who – it’s becoming obvious that this is about pharmaceutical sales more than it is about my health.

    After 3 years of hearing that I was a walking cholesterol time bomb, I was in the ER with chest pain due to extreme stress. Despite the fact that nitro pills did nothing and my enzymes were fine, my cholesterol numbers and the fact that I was on a high dose of statins made the cardiologist decide to do a stress test. Though that showed nothing except a “barely noticeable, almost not there possible faint shadowing” over my left breast (their words) they decided to do a heart cath to be sure; they were convinced that something HAD to be wrong in there. But my arteries were “clean as a whistle,” so clean that the cardiologist performing the cath asked me why I was wasting his time and mine! (Keep in mind what Suzy said, that stations do not REMOVE arterial plaque.)

    Then my husband was put on statins. Soon after, he woke to find serious bruises over several areas of his body. We took pictures of them and called our pharmacist, listing every drug he had ever been on. The pharmacist caught that he was on Ketoconazole and told him quite loudly to stop taking both that and his statin and call the doctor right away. While we had the pharmacist on the phone, I asked about my Creator dose, and he got really quiet. He said that while 40 mg a day was within bounds, it was a high dose and if he were me he is would have a serious talk with my doctor – especially in light of my severe side effects. Well, I had already tried that several times. My husband and I started doing serious research on these drugs and made the decision not to take them ever again.

    Statins stop your body doing what it is supposed to do naturally – create cholesterol. Without a very serious reason, I don’t think it is a good idea to stop your body from doing this. Why is there a liver warning on statin drugs? Because they interfere with the liver’s natural function. One of the functions of cholesterol is to repair weakness in your artery walls by plaqueing (I think of spackling) over the weak spots. So to me, the natural thing to do is keep your arterial walls strong. I have taken 1000 mg vitamin C twice daily all my adult life and vitamin C helps keep your blood vessels strong so plaqueing is not necessary. I talked to the cardiologist who performed my heart cath and he agreed that this might be the reason why my heart is healthy while my parents – who both had high cholesterol – had heart issues, with my dad having 5 bypasses at once. So rather than kill my liver and my leg muscles with statins, I’m sticking with vitamin C and CoQ-10. It’s still not a great idea to have cholesterol as high as mine is, but I’ll try to deal with that through diet and exercise (as much as I can – my back is screwed up and even walking and sitting aerobics hurts).

    I make no claim to medical training, but I do read a great deal and was in clinic and pharmacy all my working life. I strongly recommend anyone do some research before taking statins. Make sure it is the right thing to do, your only or best option, before telling your liver not to do its job.

  13. R.Mcwhiter April 8, 2015 at 7:05 pm - Reply

    Suzy my husband has high cholesterol but refuses to take any medication for it? He has been on Crestor , zeros and another one along with those two, but after a employee that works with him told him that he had had a heart attack and was on the same medicine he just stopped taking it. He also takes Exforge for his BP. I’m worried about him and I want to know what you suggest I do supplement wise to maybe help get his cholesterol down with medicine?!! Please tell me what I need to do.

    • Suzy Cohen April 9, 2015 at 12:32 am - Reply

      Diet and exercise are virtually foolproof, work almost all the time if undertaken properly and committed to. Is he open to that?

  14. Brenda April 8, 2015 at 7:08 pm - Reply

    Suzie,

    My husband takes these drugs for familial hypercholesteremia. He will not stop taking. His Mom had Alzheimer’s, high cholesterol, high BP. His sister died of “cancer”, but I believe she actually died from taking statin drugs..muscle pain and weakness, lung problems, etc. Both my husband and I have the genes for methylation problems. Our Dr. Rx’d Deplin, which is very expensive so we haven’t refilled it. It sounds like he is doomed to have heart problems taking stations, or cancer or both…We do take CoQ10 but he doesn’t get Vitamin K except in foods. What do you suggest?

  15. Karin April 8, 2015 at 7:08 pm - Reply

    What about using Red Yeast Rice in place of drug company statins. We are confused. We thought Red Yeast Rice was ok, but our pharmacist & DC tell us it is a statin, that it causes the same side effects, and we wonder if it does all the negative things you mention above. Do you have info on what we can do naturally to bring a 300 cholesterol level down so our MD stops bugging us about statins? We have given up gluten, sugar, trying to control stress [but reading articles like this confuses us and then makes us filled with stress]. We do pilates everyday, but walking is difficult for my husband, so we don’t do much exercise except for walking around our house. Thank you.

  16. Tom Ridgley April 8, 2015 at 7:09 pm - Reply

    Hi Suzy,
    Finally this scam may be starting to unwind. But it’s not easy to stop a $20 billion yearly market so easily. I have ongoing myopathy, muscle wasting and type 2 diabetes from 80mg simvastatin for 6 months 7 years ago. I was a strong 225 lb man, now have trouble getting out of chairs and opening jars. Had I taken Merck’s Zocor, I would have sued. Maybe if it goes through the Supreme Court a third time us 90% generic users will have a chance to hold responsible who they purchased the drug from. Thanks for your article, the doc’s argue a little less each year with me over this. Tom Ridgley

    • Suzy Cohen April 9, 2015 at 12:30 am - Reply

      Hi Tom
      I’ve been talking about this for many years, since the first statin was ever approved. Today, lots of people talk about it. Very good. I’m so sorry that you have been suffering like this, makes me sad.

  17. Luana Anderson April 8, 2015 at 7:11 pm - Reply

    We stopped taking statins several years ago as we became more educated. We get good results from Kyolic Red Yeast rice–no side-effects, but I understand that the mechanism for lowering cholesterol is the same for statins and red yeast rice. Have we really improved our situation, or should we continue looking for another natural fix? Thank you!

  18. Pat Ford April 8, 2015 at 7:15 pm - Reply

    Does Red Rice Yeast have the same effect? I have only slightly elevated cholesterol levels and the doctor suggested Red Rice yeast since I prefer to stay away from Pharmaceuticals.

    Where can I get info about lowering my cholesterol through diet and maybe exercise?

    Thanks

  19. Patricia Bradley April 8, 2015 at 7:21 pm - Reply

    So if we shouldn’t take statins, what should we do for elevated cholesterol ?

  20. KS April 8, 2015 at 7:29 pm - Reply

    Suzy,
    You rock :)! You don’t happen to know of or offer an all around good multi-vitamin for heart health (for statin-takers) by any chance, do you?

    • Suzy Cohen April 9, 2015 at 12:29 am - Reply

      There isn’t one, however you should be taking the depleted nutrients. THANK YOU 🙂

  21. Kathy Matty April 8, 2015 at 7:37 pm - Reply

    I took myself off Lipitor a few years ago, because I had read that statins could affect memory…make you feel a little brain-cloudy, and less sharp. Have you come accross any research that confirms the connection between statin drugs and memory loss, specifically linking them with the increase in Alzheimer’s Disease? If it is true that cholesterol is brain food, then it makes sense that starving the brain of it could lead to dementia.

    On another note, I want to thank you for the wealth of good information that you have been providing. I am in remission from lung cancer (non smoker) on Tarceva, and taking l-glutamine and alpha lipoic acid to help combat the neuropathy; other supplements include zhu ling mushroom, CO Q10, Tumeric, DHA 200, probiotic comploex, biotin 5000 (B multi) and B12 1000mcg. If you have any other suggestions, I would be very interested! I eat mostly all organic and gluten free. Thanks again, Kathy

  22. Sam April 8, 2015 at 7:48 pm - Reply

    Love it!! You’re so wonderful for constantly putting out information like this! You and Jimmy Moore should hook up and do a short video of how to test cholesterol, how to interpret and what to do nutritionally to avoid going down the statin road. Would love to see how your energy would play with his.

  23. Ellot April 8, 2015 at 7:49 pm - Reply

    Hi Suzy, thanks for the info. Always good information given here. I was wondering if the list of the drugs in your book gets updated regularly or at least on some kind of updating is done. Thank you.

    Elliot Feldman

    • Suzy Cohen April 9, 2015 at 12:28 am - Reply

      It hasn’t been updated in the book in a few years, so when a new depletion becomes available, I write an article and post/archive it here at my site. Do you have a specific drug in mind?

  24. Bill Kremidas April 8, 2015 at 7:55 pm - Reply

    This is exactly what I went through a few years ago. After a slightly elevated cholesterol number (I think it was 203) my endocrinologist prescribed Zocor (I’m diabetic). I usually wouldn’t fill a prescription like that and would try to
    lower my numbers with diet and exercise after reading your Diabetes Without Drugs. This time, since I was training to run my first half marathon I decided to follow the doctor’s advice and started taking Zocor or Simvastatin. I was doing a lot of running so my legs were sore a lot of the time so it didn’t occur to me that it could’ve been a side effect of the drug. I went to get my blood drawn as part of my next visit to the doctor right before my half marathon and I got an urgent message to call the doctor right away. They told me to stop taking Simvastatin immediately because my CoQ10 levels are dangerously low. When I went to see him a few days later he told me to start taking CoQ10 over the counter and that he wouldn’t recommend that I run the race… All that training lost after deciding to follow the doctor’s advice. He told me if I ran I would be at high risk for a heart attack. All that after being just a few points high on my cholesterol number. I will no longer take a statin drug and am very hesitant to take any drugs prescribed at all that can’t be replaced with better eating habits and exercise. I ran my half marathon the next year and am currently training for my first full marathon soon. I am not perfect as far as diet goes and I’m still in diabetic med (Metformin) but I’m working to get off if that soon. There is still life to live after a diabetes diagnosis. I’ve had Type 2 diabetes for 15 years now and I’m in the best shape of my life.

  25. Robert Wieland April 8, 2015 at 8:07 pm - Reply

    In the early nineties I took my first choleseterol blood test and came in around 230. Since “acceptable” was 240 back then I was deemed fine. shortly thereafter when statins were introduced, the new “acceptable” was lowered to 200! The tragedy is that I know gullable, HEALTHY people that took this stuff and their readings were 210, 215, etc.!
    I often wonder in the Alzheimer epidemic has anything to do with this(since the brain requires cholesterol) and combined with fluoridation(hey if it “hardens” your teeth, maybe it hardens your arteries).

  26. RICHARD April 8, 2015 at 8:08 pm - Reply

    Suzy, 24 years ago to keep from having more bypass surgery, I changed my diet, 3 months later the angina was gone, and I have not had any more bypassing done.
    To due this one needs to change from living to eat, to eating to live.
    Unlike SATINS a high fiber diet over time removes the bad glop from your arteries. Just remember eating plant based food is the only way to get fiber . Eating animal based foods will not due it
    Learn how to cook, it is quite possible t have tasteful veggie based meals.

  27. Kim Gregory April 8, 2015 at 8:32 pm - Reply

    When I first learned that my cholesterol was high I didn’t want to take a statin, so I went to a nutritionist and asked her what I needed to do. She told me to eat less than 13g of saturated fats, eat more fiber, especially whole oats; exercise and lose weight; and also take red yeast rice, and fish oil. I went to your site and learned also that I needed the CoQ10 and I needed to take an Omega9, so I started taking Black Current Oil. I took a fiber supplement to help get enough fiber each day. My next doctor’s visit had my cholesterol down in the normal range. Today, my cholesterol is down in the 160’s now and my triglycerides under 200. (I don’t have diabetes.) I wish I could have done it naturally, but I felt like I didn’t have a choice.

  28. Dee April 8, 2015 at 8:40 pm - Reply

    Hi Suzy,

    Do you have an info or advice for someone with familial hypercholesterolemia?

    I have never been on statins, and I am very thin.

    I haven’t eaten dairy since childhood due to allergy, and have been eating gluten-free for about two years. My processed sugar intake has always been low, and has been almost non-existant for the last two years.

    I have been eating a mostly home cooked diet since December when I was diagnosed with kidney stones. It has been completely home cooked for about a month. The only pre-made items before that were organic sprouted corn tortillas, and gluten-free brown rice bread (this was the only item in my diet with a small amount of processed sugar, agave). I have added coconut oil, coconut butter and coconut milk to my diet over the last two years. My last blood test showed total cholesterol and LDL over a hundred points above what was normal for me.

    Thank you for any advice you can give.

  29. Shirley April 8, 2015 at 8:44 pm - Reply

    Suzy,
    I love your blogs. I especially like the roll your eyes, bite your lip, and smack your head comments. I have high cholesterol and was put on a couple of different statins. This was
    several years ago and I could not climb stairs at my work and I had a very foggy brain. I finally quit taking them and my brain is better. I still have high cholesterol but my good is quite high so I guess I try to eat right and not worry about it. I am not one to take pills but I have asthma so I do have to take Advair 250/50 and a nebulizer 3 times a day and Claritin for congestion.
    Shirley

    • Suzy Cohen April 9, 2015 at 12:36 am - Reply

      Hi Shirley
      Try a 30 day trial of absolutely no dairy, no butter, ice cream, milk, cheese, nothing. See if you still need all that Claritin, Advair and nebulizing solution (I assume albuterol). Just try, if you really regard me as an expert, you’ll do this without a single cheat, and get back to me here.
      Tough love, it sucks doesn’t it <3

      • Cindy April 9, 2015 at 2:08 am - Reply

        Suzy, I have terrible allergies. I take Zyrtic every am. and Mucus Relief Dm twice a day. Would going dairy free help me? Would I need to stop using Almond Milk? Thank you?

        • Suzy Cohen April 9, 2015 at 5:50 am - Reply

          Yes, I would say to try it, be very religious about it, don’t cheat. Give it 30 days and you should see a difference. Almond milk is fine. Nothing with casein though.

  30. jackie April 8, 2015 at 8:51 pm - Reply

    suzy, what suggestions do you have for stubborn sinus problem. Is there an otc that helps to
    to keep sinus open?

  31. Bobbi April 8, 2015 at 8:57 pm - Reply

    What about RED YEAST RICE and CoQ10 supplements instead of one of those prescription drugs you listed?

    • Suzy Cohen April 9, 2015 at 12:26 am - Reply

      Yes, probably a little milder reduction of cholesterol, and milder side effects but RYR is still a statin. It depletes the same nutrients as prescription statins.

  32. Harry Fleischman April 8, 2015 at 9:03 pm - Reply

    When I mention to my PCP and my cardiologist that taking atorvastatin affects my memory (as a senior citizen, I’m very concerned about memory loss!), they dismiss this as nonsense! Obviously, they prefer not to discuss the subject so I stopped bringing it up. I also reduced my dosage substantially and my docs are happy with my cholesterol levels.

    BTW, in the last paragraph, you have a proofreader’s problem with the sentence beginning with,
    “….dosages of these vitamins….”

    Suzy, your columns are always highly informative!

    • Suzy Cohen April 9, 2015 at 12:41 am - Reply

      Hi Harry
      Thanks for pointing out my proofreader problem, which I have now fixed. Gosh it’s hard to look this good AND type everything correctly, ha ha!
      Seriously, thanks. That atorvastatin can cause depression, memory loss and confusion. You should dismiss them if they are dismissing your concerns because this is well-documented. It’s no secret. It’s in their literature, are they even reading their literature? I’m concerned too. Statins will destroy the brain if you give them enough time!

  33. Sondra April 8, 2015 at 9:03 pm - Reply

    Great information! Question for you Suzy ~ Does red yeast rice have the same dastardly side effects on the mitochondria as pharmacological statins?

    • Suzy Cohen April 9, 2015 at 12:39 am - Reply

      Hi Sondra
      It’s less dastardly but yes, the same effect because RYR is actually a statin too.

  34. Shasha April 8, 2015 at 9:05 pm - Reply

    Hi, I think people think Statins will unclog their blood vessels. EDTA IV chelations/suppositories may help remove Ca plaques that narrow blood vessels. Eating no gluten/dairy/soy/sugar/GMO and taking vitamins/good oils, LDN, detoxing may help heart disease. Coenyzme Q10, hawthorn, carnitine, 2000mgFish oil (thins blood), Mg citrate 400mg, Osteoprocare (Ca/Mg and cofactors), PQQ, Benfotiamine (fat soluble Vit B1), zinc, Amour thyroid if gluten made antibodies to the thyroid, Vit C, Vit D3 5000IU, HCl and enzymes with meals, dairy free probiotic at night (low stomach acid), Vit B12 methylcobalamin shot/spray/under the tongue kind, MTHF folate, rhodiola and more may help the heart. A granny Smith apple a day seemed to help my gums be more rubbery and blood vessels/skin be better. Lemon juice in water after eating raw walnuts (open shells to avoid hidden gluten on them) may squirt out bile and detox the liver and cause bowel movements and weight loss. No bad fats/food in a box/bag/label/…eating organic/exercise/sunlight/nature/hugs/prayer/good water not tap water with F/cooking by scratch/no heated oils/LDN helps block hidden gluten and more help me. Best wishes.

  35. Anne April 8, 2015 at 9:06 pm - Reply

    I had a triple bypass last June. I am on metropolel and xeralto. I have a lot of muscle pain when I take statins so I don’t take them. My cholesterol is getting high so my Dr wants me to try Fenofibrate. What are your thoughts about this drug?
    Thanks

    • Suzy Cohen April 9, 2015 at 12:25 am - Reply

      CoQ10 deficiency or vitamin D deficiency is causing the muscle pain (just my guess) as those nutrients are mugged by statins. Statins are drug muggers of those nutrients, it’s in my Drug Muggers book. You’d have to try fenofibrate, to see if it’s right for you.

  36. Bill C April 8, 2015 at 9:06 pm - Reply

    Is red yeast rice included in the statins you warn about?

    • Suzy Cohen April 9, 2015 at 12:23 am - Reply

      Red yeast is a statin, just naturally derived.

  37. anne April 8, 2015 at 9:12 pm - Reply

    What is your opinion of red rice yeast?

  38. Carol Summers April 8, 2015 at 9:14 pm - Reply

    Is Welchol also considered a statin and will affect the body the same way?

    • Suzy Cohen April 9, 2015 at 12:22 am - Reply

      Hi Carol
      Welchol is not a statin, and does not affect you the same way.

  39. patricia grenfell April 8, 2015 at 9:36 pm - Reply

    I have your book “Drug Muggers”. Thanks to your book I found out that the statins were causing my leg cramps. I started using Magnesium and don’t have anymore. Of course I talked to the doctor and he had me take the same amount you prescribed. I also found out after asking the doctor about COQ10 which he told me to take 100 mg. I am 77 years old and I have just been put on three months of antibiotics due to long running UTI. The antibiotic must contain Magnesium since I don’t have leg cramps while taking them. Thank you so much for your help and am rereading it again since there is so much to think about.

  40. Bill Mercy April 8, 2015 at 9:38 pm - Reply

    Your thoughts on the use of Red Yeast Rice —- I have used it (2400 mg daily) for several years with good results

    • Suzy Cohen April 9, 2015 at 12:21 am - Reply

      Hi Bill
      It’s just like a natural statin, so you’ll need to restore all the lost nutrients. I’m writing a column on that shortly.

  41. Willie April 8, 2015 at 9:55 pm - Reply

    Dear Suzy I have been taking Lipitor since 1998 the last few years I have been taking Atorvastatin 20 mg my Dr. never mentioned any Vitamin or minerals to take, with the statins, we are not vegetarians but we eat a healthy diet, I have never been comfortable taking any kind of medication. Would it be wise for me to stop statins? I am 79 and in good health except continuing constipation, that I don’t seem to get under control. Would it be wise to take Statin every other day I have seen that recommended on Internet. Thank you also for your Colum in our local paper, we read it every time thank you again Willie .

    • Suzy Cohen April 9, 2015 at 12:21 am - Reply

      As a pharmacist, I’m not really permitted to advise you on this sort of thing like stopping medications and such, so please understand, you have to discuss all changes with your personal physician. I make no bones about my personal opinion though, they would not be right for me personally but everyone is different, there are many people on this forum here today that actually do need them.

  42. Joe Day April 8, 2015 at 10:08 pm - Reply

    Have been on 20mg Lipitor since heart bypass surgery 4 1/2 years ago. Chloresterol was 160 before starting statin. Now it is 108. No side effects.
    Doctor says statin good for other things like inflammation. Heart bypass likely caused by Agent Orange exposure in Vietnam in 1967. I am back to running road races & snow skiing in the Rockies. 72 years old.
    Should I talk to doctor about stopping Lipitor & doing something else for inflammation? Tests for inflammation always low.

    Thank you.

    Joe Day

    • Suzy Cohen April 9, 2015 at 12:19 am - Reply

      You’re not having side effects so that is good. But to answer your question, YES why not? If you can take natural anti-inflammatories and there are many, why not? I’d at least pose the question. If there’s a rational reason NOT to stop and switch then you will know for sure. Thank you for your service 🙂

  43. Jean Daugherty April 8, 2015 at 10:23 pm - Reply

    My Cardiologist recommended Red Yeast Rice in place of a statin. After 2 1/2 years of
    getting weaker and weaker, my muscles are wasted, I find out that it is the same as a
    statin. Now I can only stand for about 5 minutes and can walk about 50 feet. They say
    it will take years to recover.

    Red Yeast Rice is the same as Lovastatin.

  44. Erica Ricky Kennedy April 8, 2015 at 10:36 pm - Reply

    Thank you SO much for your book (Drug Muggers) and your columns. I am going to print this off for my husband’s VA doctor who tries to get him to take statins every time they do his blood. I have stood my ground for years. He uses multiple drugs and supplements to get the same effect more safely. I am also taking her a copy of your book.

  45. Jan Stanley April 8, 2015 at 10:37 pm - Reply

    I have had high Cholesterol for a few years. It has stayed around 270-275, My diet has always been good. I eat lots of vegetables, fruits, whole grains, beans, nuts and seeds. I eat small amounts of fish, poultry and dairy. I walk 3-4 miles 5 days a week. My doctor and I have had strong disagreements about me taking a statin drug. I bought your books, Drug Muggers and The 24 Hour Pharmacist. I read about taking Policosanol so have been taking 20mg of Source Naturals for about 2 months. So far I have not seen a change in my numbers. Have I not given it enough time? Or do I need to try something else? I have concerns about taking even natural supplements because I tend to get many of the side affects. I do take Hawaiian Spirulina, Ubiquinol, Mega Red krill oil, Vitamin D3 and a probiotic every day. I am not on any prescription or over the counter drugs. I am also a breast cancer survivor. I will be 59 in a few weeks. Do you have any other suggestions? I would appreciate any advice you can offer. Thank you. Jan Stanley

  46. Ms. A April 8, 2015 at 10:53 pm - Reply

    I’m so glad to see this post. My Son, a heart transplant patient, was put on statins as a precautionary measure, but they don’t mention, or treat the nutrients it depletes. With all the other drugs he is on, I don’t see why they don’t feel this is of vital importance! Irritates the snot out of me! It’s no wonder transplant patients end up needing yet another heart, or even other organs, as the years go on!

  47. Dinorah April 8, 2015 at 11:04 pm - Reply

    Thank you Suzy for this explanation, I had Lipitor for few years. The doctor gave it telling me that I need it because the cholesterol was high.

    I began to have pains all over my body until one lucky day I checked Google for another medicine and then checked Lipitor, then I see what was giving me the pains, I talked with the doctor who tried to give me another statins and I did not accept. I try to follow a diet, and exercise because I am diabetic, and again thank you for your book “Diabetes without Drugs” it is the best about diabetes that I have (I have about 10 books in the subject)

    Many blessings to you.
    Dinorah

  48. Thomas A Braun RPh April 8, 2015 at 11:19 pm - Reply

    If you read..”How statin drugs kill you one cell at a time” the author Dr. Yoseph (pen name..acutally a cellular physician) believes that the statin drugs drive the cholesterol out of the arteries and into the cells. A false positive. She wrote the book because of a article I wrote years ago.. The book is really a primer to lawyers to start a class action law suit since the whole concept is based on fraudulent research. The fact that in Europe they prescribe Co Q 10 with the stain and don’t do it here, is enough in my book to start a lawsuit for all the harm they have caused. The problem is you need lots of money.

  49. Karen April 8, 2015 at 11:31 pm - Reply

    My Dr. told me my cholesterol was a little high about 4 years ago and wanted me to take medication. I said no I would check into natural treatment for this. I started taking Red Yeast Rice and Cotoq10 both from Viticost and my levels have been O.K. since then. My Dr. said to keep on taking this.

  50. EVERT KUESTER, MD April 8, 2015 at 11:48 pm - Reply

    Hi Suzy. I am an 88 year old retired radiologist. 5 years ago I had 2 coronary stents placed. The physician tried to put me on a statin drug.I refused. My latest cholesterol 97. I appreciate your advise. It’s right on.

  51. Will Springer April 8, 2015 at 11:59 pm - Reply

    Suzy –

    I really appreciate your newsletter. I’ve come to feel that pharmacists are categorically among the least-biased health professionals. Unfortunately, it appears that Big Pharm owns the AMA and the medical schools. Consequently, if Big Pharm tells M.D.s that everyone needs statins, that becomes “a universal truth”.

    None of this, of course, is “news” to you.

    My concern has to do with health-serving supplements. I try to keep abreast of “what’s new” and what is truly essential. It’s overwhelming. Even a millionaire would wince at the cost of taking every supplement that is recommended!

    Moreover, I suspect that if someone took all these supplements, they’d probably get diarrhea!

    There’s got to be a different way to achieve good digestion and health.

    Here’s an idea: A “collective” – based on a non-profit, truth-based panel of health professionals – that would make available the REAL essentials to members at a reasonable price.

    This would not be easy. Everything about the supplement industry seems to be based on hype and exorbitant profits. (Garden of Life is the most egregious example.)

    Let’s face it: presently, the entire health profession and the supplement industry is geared to serving the (largely) narcissistic needs and fantasies of the affluent.

    Ordinary people don’t matter. Indeed, many of their health problems are exacerbated by eating foods that are recommended by our government: eggs, cheese, corn syrup, beef, etc.

    The reason, of course, is that the government is highly influenced by lobbyists – and all the food producers have heavy-hitters.

    This circle of madness could be broken. But it would take an organization that would establish an authenticity and honesty that is beyond reproach.

    I’d love to hear your comments about this.

    Will Springer

    • Suzy Cohen April 9, 2015 at 5:58 am - Reply

      Hi Will
      I think you’re right, they invent diseases to try to sell different medications and supplements. I do believe in supplements though. I understand the language of the body thanks to classes on pharmaceutics and medicinal chemistry, organic chem. I delighted in no less than 3 hours of those classes 5 days a week, for 4 solid years. Your body would die in 2 seconds if you didn’t have enough minerals and vitamins which run all those biochemical reactions. The problem is that there’s a lot of garbage out there, supplement makers often put a ton of artificial ingredients, colorants, coatings, fillers and also they don’t produce bioactive compounds. I would estimate 98% of supplements to be junk. But I don’t dismiss them. I actually sell them. I sell the absolutely highest quality products you can buy without first having to go to a doctor. It’s a small store but I’m growing thanks to people noticing it and word getting around. (Definitely diarrhea, and much worse, lol, you’re kind of funny).

      • Kermit Jackson April 9, 2015 at 2:15 pm - Reply

        Hi, Suzy, Your notes are interesting. My daughter, Bonnie Kestner, is a certified nutrition counselor. She is retired from teaching wellness and nutrition at the college level…but she offers me free advice which I believe is for my benefit, but I do not always follow it. She recommended your website today, as I am concerned about the atorvastatin (Lipitor) which my doc has prescribed. I’ll phone her (the doc) today to ask about getting off of it ASAP. I’ll also see if “Drug Muggers” is available in my library. Thanks Kermit P.S. I’m 87 yrs old…my daughter tells me I could live to be 100+ if I faithfully take my supplements. I’m really not interested in living until 100 or more. Not much fun when you spend half your time taking those things which “keep you alive” and the other half sleeping or entertaining yourself playing computer chess or solitaire.

        • Suzy Cohen April 9, 2015 at 5:58 pm - Reply

          Chess is kind of fun. You can always have more fun and comment on my other articles, I’ll keep you company 😉

          • Yosako June 7, 2015 at 9:38 pm

            Chess…fun? Only when you play it with a hammer. 🙂
            Otherwise it requires too much planning.

    • Stephen Hemsley April 11, 2015 at 3:55 pm - Reply

      Dear Will,

      I am a pharmacist in Australia and appreciate your support for pharmacists but would like to provide another point of view.

      Everything that Suzy says is spot on. Follow the biochemistry and you cannot go wrong.

      What irritates me is that pharmacists I work for (owners), are not interested in my alternative opinion on statins as it would decimate their businesses. Statins have, and still are, the top money generator for pharmacists. It is NOT in their business interests to listen. Trust me. I have lost jobs because of my opinion being “found out” and being told I am no longer the “right fit” for the pharmacy.

      You will find that you just need to “follow the money” on this one. Some pharmacists owners may suggest using Coenzyme Q10 but that is for an additional sale, NOT, to help the client. They get away with it because it is difficult for a pharmacist to question the doctors prescription without running the gauntlet of criticism and derision. If you do it with a family member you will be ex-communicated. My family thinks I am a black sheep and do not trust me. Maybe through another channel like Suzy’s web site they may realize that I was only trying to help.

      You will find that pharmacists, who do not own their business, are more likely to really read the articles and have a balanced opinion.They do not have a vested interest.Trouble is, that when you do go down the “rabbit hole” it is hard to come back.

      I recommend and use supplements. Unfortunately the good ones are expensive to manufacture and you get what you pay for.

      Buy the best. You only have one body and you have to ask yourself if you are worth the investment. If you are looking for an economical “superfood” it may be worth giving a product called Zeal a try. I use and recommend it.
      http://www.healthybeing.zealforlife.comnet.au
      The truth is out there!

      Stephen
      B Pharm Australia

      • Suzy Cohen April 11, 2015 at 4:06 pm - Reply

        Thank you Stephen, well said 🙂

      • Becky Daniels April 12, 2015 at 2:42 pm - Reply

        I am also a pharmacist and agree with all you said! It’s all about the money these days! But worst of all now the profession is pushing MTM and Pharmacist prescribing , Medicare Part D stars programs which means following the all the protocols. The “powers that be” do not want providers that don’t follow these protocols.— esp under Obamacare.

        • Suzy Cohen April 16, 2015 at 10:41 pm - Reply

          Hi Becky
          Thank you for the work that you do to help people feel better. When I was a pharmacist in Florida, we had limited prescribing abilities but not one pharmacist I know saw patients for the purpose of using their ‘pharmacist prescribing’ abilities. Too much work, not enough time, we couldn’t ‘see patients’ and dispense 400 prescriptions per hour! LOL right?!
          We always sent people to their physician for serious problems or to the aisles to buy over-the-counter items which could help.

  52. Gudrun April 9, 2015 at 12:40 am - Reply

    A friend of mine has type 2 diabetes. She says that people with diabetes are a more susceptible to heart disease and therefore absolutely have to take statins, no matter what the side effects.
    Is she correct?
    I really would like to know.

    Thanks.

    • Suzy Cohen April 9, 2015 at 12:47 am - Reply

      I disagree with your friend.

    • Adriane April 11, 2015 at 2:37 am - Reply

      I totally disagree too! There was a study out in the last couple of years that showed something like a 50% increase risk of diabetes when taking a statin, especially for women. Now this study that Suzy is talkng about today showing increased heart disease, including heart failure…this is one drug that clearly has more risk than benefit. Oh, and while I’m at it, tell your friend that cholesterol is needed for a healthy brain and to make all the sex hormones. We shouldn’t be shutting off our ability to make cholesterol, we should be making sure inflammation is down by eating our fruits/veggies and taking things like turmeric, quality fish oil, and CoQ10 instead of taking a statin. I’m much more interested in my CRP level (C-Reactive Protein, a blood marker for inflammation) than my cholesterol level.

  53. Les April 9, 2015 at 12:47 am - Reply

    My Dr. ordered a blood test recently. After getting the results and having me return to his office, he said my cholesterol was too high. I was told to have a followup blood test for the high cholesterol, schedule another appointment, and he would give me something to take to lower it. I am 77yrs. and do not take any medication. I have decided to try diet and more intense exercise instead. He said the remainder of the test results looked good.

    • Yosako June 7, 2015 at 9:47 pm - Reply

      If you’re ever prescribed a statin, and specially at your age, be sure of getting 100 mg of Ubiquinol (antioxidant form of CoQ10).

  54. Janice April 9, 2015 at 2:50 am - Reply

    Hi Suzy,

    I have been on generic Lipitor for 2 years. I lost 49 pounds and walked 4 miles 7 days a week so I talked with my cardiologist and stopped taking the Lipitor. My Ldl doubled in 6 weeks. I was very disappointed with the result since I lost weight and was excersising. Do you have any other suggestions in ways I can lower my cholesterol? Thank You

    • Yosako June 7, 2015 at 9:51 pm - Reply

      Unless there is a major reason (muscle problems, drug interactions or like that) it isn’t a good idea to go off meds cold turkey! .

      • Crit April 11, 2016 at 8:25 am - Reply

        According to my pharmacist and my doctor, there is no harm in going off cholesterol meds cold turkey. Especially if there are nasty side effects.

  55. Jim Kraynik April 9, 2015 at 3:38 am - Reply

    My son works with Doterra Essenial Oils, what do you think of useing them?? Thanks Jim

  56. Georgios April 9, 2015 at 5:16 am - Reply

    Thanks Suzy, I don’t take drugs. Regarding high cholesterol values this is not bad for brain health according to Dr perlmutter (see his book GRAIN BRAIN).

    • Suzy Cohen April 9, 2015 at 5:46 am - Reply

      Agreed, David is a dear friend and his books are wonderful.

  57. Vicky April 9, 2015 at 5:47 am - Reply

    Dear Miss Cohen,

    I am a 53 year old overweight woman. I have high cholesterol as well. I told my doctor I will not take statins. However, I do take Cholestoff Plus from Costco. I also take 200 mg CoQ10 each morning. I do notice my mental faculties or acuteness has increased which is very welcome. I have not yet had a blood test yet to determine if my cholesterol has decreased. Does Cholestoff have similiar effects to the heart as does statins? I plan on asking my alternative care provider if I also need to take Vitamin K2 and selenium.

    Thank you,

    Vicky

    • Suzy Cohen April 9, 2015 at 5:52 am - Reply

      Cholestoff by Nature Made, that is sold at Costco I believe. If that is what you are referring to, then NO it is not like statins, and it does not cause those bad side effects like statins might. Cholestoff should be fine 🙂

  58. Charlotte April 9, 2015 at 6:26 am - Reply

    I am 62. Last year I had a hysterectomy and salping-oophroectomy — was thought to be precancer but ended up with uterine cancer. I have had problems before surgery getting my lipids down and after surgery it went crazy. It is not really high – 232, but the LDL is high and has been for a few years. I bought a book called ‘Cholesterol Down – followed it for two months. The only thing I did not do is drink soy because of the cancer. Unfortunately, total cholesterol only went down 2 points but HDL did go up 6 points. The things this diet has:oatmeal, flax seed, Cholestoff, metamucil, apples, almonds (handful), exercise 30 minutes a day.

    Any suggestions of what else I might try? I also take daily fish oil, CoQ10, magnesum, garlic, Vit D3, Vit E, niacin, and tumeric.

    I am also hypothyroid but my thyroid is being weird. The doctor cut my dosage now twice. I lost 20 pounds after surgery (was 260) and since he lowered my thyroid I am gaining it back. So I am battling both lipids and thyroid.

  59. Connie April 9, 2015 at 6:47 am - Reply

    HI Suzy! Thank you for the great suggestions you had for me on LP. I’m working on following up on those and waiting for your book on Itching to arrive! At this point I wish it was an e-book!

    I am not on Statins and don’t have a cholesterol problem but have low folate. Does that mean I might still have methylation problems? What causes low folate if not using any drugs? Is it true that using Activated Charcoal at night would help with methylation or do I have the wrong definition of methylation?

    You are so great! BTW what is the best way to get back to you on my LP progress?
    Connie

    • Suzy Cohen April 9, 2015 at 6:03 pm - Reply

      I don’t recommend Activated Charcoal to help with methylation, not really the fix and can constipate you. Just because you are low in folate doesn’t automatically mean you have a methylation problem, you might but it could also mean you are taking a drug mugger of folate, there are hundreds.

  60. […] by Suzy Cohen on April 8, 2015  in Fatigue, Heart Disease, Heart Health, Medications, Medicine, Men’s Health, Methylation, Thyroid, Women’s Health ·  Comments { 85 } […]

  61. Mark April 9, 2015 at 11:46 am - Reply

    Suzy:

    Are there natural vitamins or minerals that keep the cholesterol level in check? I have read that vitamin C is a natural statin.

    Thanks,
    Mark

  62. Jennifer April 9, 2015 at 12:23 pm - Reply

    I take red rice yeast and niacin,does this have the same effect as the prescribed statins? Thanks

    • Lisa April 16, 2015 at 6:36 am - Reply

      I’m sure Suzy can give a more detailed answer, but when I researched red yeast rice to see if it was a good alternative to statins, I found that it inhibits the same enzyme that statins do, the enzyme that enables the liver to make cholesterol (including HDL). Stopping the liver from doing its natural function is what causes a lot of the bad side effects, including possible liver damage.

      So yes, same effect – bad.

  63. Janet Thome April 9, 2015 at 12:41 pm - Reply

    I take care of a man who is 86 years old and was taking statins for over 10 years until I took him to an integrative doctor. He has an atrified calf from statin use and did have Congestive Heart Failure UNTIL his hypothyroidism was treated with dessicated thyroid and as of his last results, there is no evidence of CHF.

    http://hypothyroidmom.com/86-year-old-mans-congestive-heart-failure-resolved-with-thyroid-treatment/

    Dr. Julian Whitaker has warned for years that statin use can INDUCE CHF.

    http://www.drwhitaker.com/statin-drugs-side-effects-may-include-heart-failure

    Dr. Stephen Sinatra , who used to be the poster boy for statins and was paid to promote them and now says it is inflammation that causes heart disease and he is now saying, the higher your cholesterol, the longer you will live.

  64. Lisa Flood April 9, 2015 at 1:13 pm - Reply

    Hi Suzy, I enjoy all the great info that you share about prescription medicine, drug muggers etc. My doctors are not always happy with my refusal to take many of the medicines offered because I am very concerned about side effects and with good reason because these side effects and dangers are well documented by many of the natural medicine doctors especially on the internet.

  65. brian mckay April 9, 2015 at 1:33 pm - Reply

    I read your blog for the first time. Thank you for your integrity and honest writing. It is never easy to go against “common knowledge”. I am buying your book today.
    Highest Regards to you
    Brian McKay

    • Suzy Cohen April 9, 2015 at 5:59 pm - Reply

      Thanks Brian, nice to meet another DC. I love DCs. Really I do… so much so I married one!

  66. Christine RPh April 9, 2015 at 2:13 pm - Reply

    I am a pharmacist. Many years ago, I was prescribed a statin for total cholesterol that was in the 240 range. My HDL has always been in the low 70’s. After 9 months on the med, I finally realized that I was “fishing” for words in my sentences, and was having some memory loss. I stopped the statin immediately, and my memory returned to normal in short order. Years later, I observed the exact same reaction in my husband when he was given a statin. Over the next few years, my LDL, and therefore TC, climbed slowly. Welchol made very little difference, but caused upper GI distress…….requiring lots of expensive gall bladder diagnostic testing, with all negative results. We cut WAY back on most fruit, sticking mostly to berries on unsweetened yogurt, or an apple with cheese. We eat a ton of organic fresh green leafy vegetables, which we always have. (Very rarely, we have had to “cheat” minimally, to avoid offending a hostess :), usually by eating a very small serving of a dessert). When desperate for a dessert, we would eat 1/2 cup unsweetened Greek yogurt, with 1/4 or 1/3 cup of fresh or frozen berries, and a few pecans.

    The key is personal motivation (“buy-in”) and a paradigm shift in our thinking that drugs are not always a “given” in our best interest. Sugar is NOT our friend, and it hides everywhere, even in fruit.…..all I ask, is try this your self, but get a baseline blood lipid profile before you do, and stay with it! Suzy is SO right regarding drug mugging–especially in these types of medications that drug companies would love to see our children taking! NO! Take a personal stand and try this! My total cholesterol will be under 200 by my next lab.

    • Suzy Cohen April 9, 2015 at 6:08 pm - Reply

      Dear Christine, I had to shorten your original post over 1000 words, so I hope you don’t mind, I just posted the main point, which I agree with and I thank you for your story. I read it and you have been through a lot with your husband. Thank you for participating here on our community forum.

  67. Ellen April 9, 2015 at 3:34 pm - Reply

    Hi Suzy. Thank you for all your informative emails. I’m surprised you did not include Red Yeast Rice in your list of statins. Doesn’t Red Yeast Rice have similar benefits and risks as prescribed statins?

    • Suzy Cohen April 9, 2015 at 5:57 pm - Reply

      Yes Ellen, exactly the same effect, just a little milder.

  68. Dianne Gribosky April 9, 2015 at 3:54 pm - Reply

    I am taking Red Yeast Rice with Niacin & CoQ10 and extra niacin for reducing cholesterol. Is this OK? My doctor recommended it.

    Dianne

    • Chris Wunsch September 2, 2015 at 1:43 pm - Reply

      Diane, Red Yeast Rice can be just as dangerous as Statins are..Statins were modeled after the effect of Red Yeast Rice…they all block the HMG CoA Reductase Enzyme in the Mevalonate Pathway. Which in turn blocks every other step in this pathway, from Vitamin D Production, Steroid Hormone Production, Ubiqionone (CoQ10) production, Dolichols, Testosterone, Estrogen etc etc etc.

      I was a Critical Care RN of 12 years, when I became disabled due to my taking Lipitor (all Statins “work” the same way) I ended up hospitalized for 1 month, akin to a 95 year old with advanced Alzheimer’s disease, I could not walk, nor speak coherently, I needed diapers as I was incontinent of bowel and bladder, MRI scan revealed dozens of lesions on my brain, Brain biopsy revealed Vacuolization, Apoptosis, (programmed cell death), electron microscopy of the brain revealed Mitochondrial abnormalities, most consistent with Mitochondrial Encephalomyopathy with Lactic Acidosis and Stroke Like Episodes (MELAS).

      I was headed to a nursing home at 34 years old, until I was evaluated by a visiting professor from Johns Hopkins, who started me on a Mitochondrial Cocktail (12 vitamins etc, and a robust dose of CoEnzyme Q10) when within 36 hours of starting this, I began to speak coherently, I knew who my wife and 3 year old son were, I could walk with assist, and no longer needed the diapers, I was discharged home with a diagnosis of “Viral Encephalitis” Shortly after discharge, I saw Dr Golomb from UCSD, speaking of the Statin Effects Study she was to be doing, I enrolled, had all records sent out, and when the study finished, Dr Golomb called me to share with me that it was her opinion as well as the opinion of Dr Doug Wallace, (Mitochondria Specialist at UC Irvine ) that Lipitor was the causal contributor to the holes in my brain (apoptosis) as well as the Mitochondrial DNA mutations (MELAS). Since finding this out in 2003, I have and am doing my best to educate the world as to the complete sham these drugs are. The Pharma manipulated statistics, using the Relative Risk Reductions to boast minuscule benefits, and minimizing adverse effects. I recommend you check out facebook.com/groups/statins and a book by Dr Barbara Roberts MD, and Cardiologist of 40+ years “The Truth About Statins: Risks and Alternatives to Cholesterol-Lowering Drugs”

  69. Chris April 9, 2015 at 4:02 pm - Reply

    Thank you for sharing your knowledge with us on so many health issues!

    This one is particularly of concern to me. My doctor has told me I have the worst cholesterol profile she has ever seen. My bad cholesterol in the 300s and good cholesterol in the 30s. I am on a statin now after trying many different supplement, diet changes and exercise. I am not overweight and exercise regularly. I am adopted and don’t know my family history but am thinking this is a hereditary condition which I was diagnosed with in my early 20s. I don’t know what else to do and am scared not to take a statin after being told my risk of stroke or heart attach is really high (I am 52 now). I am taking 10 mg of Avorostatin along with 100 mg of Ubiquinol. I will now add the selenium and K.

    Do you think the statin is truly necessary in a case like mine?

  70. Helen Rogan April 9, 2015 at 5:10 pm - Reply

    Thank you Suzy for this extra information to that you provided elsewhere and at the Diabetes Summit on the subject of statins.

    I will pass it on to those who are on such things and need to know why they have aches and cramps, memory loss, etc.

    Over here in the UK, London Dr John Briffa is also running a similar education campaign to get people to be aware of the side effects of these drugs, so that they can make an informed decision to either take supplements with them and lower the dose or take a more pro-active role in their diet, so that they don’t end up on them – As Doctors over here are so ready to do – even mooting the idea that everyone, especially women over 40 should be on them as a good preventative measure!

    Sadly, I have had to be discerning as to who I inform, as there’s still folk here who treat their Doctors like gods and criticise me for ‘reading too much rubbish on the Internet’ – like I’m not intelligent enough to be discerning! – Like they are…not! Best wishes, Type 2 diabetic on the LCHF diet + no statins + great blood cholesterol test results so far: Helen xxx

    • Suzy Cohen April 9, 2015 at 5:57 pm - Reply

      I think you’re intelligent and I like the same rubbish as you 🙂

  71. Kathy April 9, 2015 at 6:36 pm - Reply

    I am a 68 yr. old woman, 128 lbs, 5’5″. I eat healthy and do yoga. I do need more aerobic type exercise. I had a heart attack four years ago. My cholesterol was not high, but being a heart patient now, my cardiologist wants it real low.
    I’ve never really trusted the “stampede” on statin drugs, but strongly suspected that big pharma was pushing it on all the docs because they do work, but no one seems to care about the side effects. Fortunately, my body (and my husbands’s) wouldn’t tolerate them. My cardiologist put me on Niacin (it’s a B-3 vitamin). He recently took me off because of some study that determined that Niacin doesn’t really help and has too many side effects. Side effects? I had no side effects, but it didn’t lower my cholesterol.
    A few months ago my cardiologist had me try 10 mg of Crestor ONCE a week. After two months I was tested and my cholesterol dropped significantly (I didn’t have any side effects on 10 mg once a week). My husband told his doctor and he tried 10 mg once a week and his cholesterol dropped also (on 10 mg once a week)! (My husband recently tried to take two pills in one week and immediately had side effects.) It’s incredible to me that this (small dosage) worked for us and if that’s true, do you think most people are being over treated (medicated)?
    Another doctor of mine (an endocrinologist) suggested I take a chinese ancient herb (that the western world has recently learned about called Berberine. My doctor said there doesn’t seem to be any side effects or problems. I’ve been taking it for about a month with no side effects. My cardiologist never heard of it and he doesn’t seem interested to learn about it, but I told him I was going to try it.
    I’ll have my cholesterol tested again in May and I am really anxious to see the results. I’ll let you know.
    Thank you for your article on “Statins”.

    • Suzy Cohen April 10, 2015 at 3:55 am - Reply

      Put “berberine” in my search box on the right, I’ve written about it so you will read more information. Shame your cardiologist never heard of it, it’s been written up in the literature in many heart-related journals.

  72. Kevin M April 9, 2015 at 10:11 pm - Reply

    Hi Suzy,

    I am a active, 63 year old male with a long history of moderately high hyperlipidemia- Total cholesterol in the upper 240s in the past and now 269.. I tried an experiment: no real modification of diet (yeh, I eat probably too much of the bad stuff, but overall we eat well-balanced meals) and Red Yeast Rice 1200 mg bid. Length of test about 4 months. Well, needless to say, if anything, total cholesterol increased from a couple of years ago
    ( TGs 125; LDL 169; HDL 75)
    PCP advice: 10 year risk-11.2% chance of stroke or heart disease. Recommend a statin.
    Twenty years ago I took Pravachol until the systemic muscle pain and weakness prompted discontinuance- LFT indicated nothing remarkable. LDL and TC reduced by less than 5 percent. Seems like I could eat nothing but brown rice and tofu and still be “at risk”.

    Bottom line is: Based on past experiences, I really don’t want to take a statin but if really necessary I will give it another go.

    However, I understand that there are tests available which would help to further determine risk and treatment options. My PCP has suggested neither- 1: determine the actual type of LDL production (small and dense or large and “fluffy”) which LDL type significantly affects the risk of vascular plaque buildup. 2. A CT vascular full body scan to determine how bad of shape the plumbing is. Neither of these tests seem to “break the bank” (I have seen ads for scans at imaging centers for as little as $49.00 and LDL differentiation about a hundred bucks). I feel that the out-of-pocket expense for these tests may be a better approach to gather more meaningful data rather than throw a pill at it. Comments?

    • Suzy Cohen April 10, 2015 at 3:54 am - Reply

      Yes, never throw pills at a blank dart board. You’re odds of missing are high.

  73. Dee April 10, 2015 at 3:26 am - Reply

    Maybe my original question was too specific, I’d really like to know your opinion so I’ll try something more generic.

    Are there any recommendations for someone with hereditary high cholesterol (no triglyceride problem)? Never been on statins or other meds for it.

    Thank you.

    • Suzy Cohen April 10, 2015 at 3:53 am - Reply

      Hi Dee
      When genes are at play such as hereditary hypercholesterolemia, then you need to block the pathway in your body that causes production of cholesterol, HMG CoA reductase is the name of the enzyme that makes cholesterol, and statins work well here. Red yeast rice is a natural statin, or the drugs. You should eat a plant based diet (vegan or at the very least vegetarian), and exercise and eat fiber. All the natural remedies used to reduce regular diet-induced hypercholesterolemia could apply too.

      • Dee April 10, 2015 at 6:35 am - Reply

        Thank you so much for your reply! I have been trying to figure out a lot of health issues (including kidney stones over the last three months) without access to a doctor or other practitioner who is very familiar with natural treatments.

        I’m still in my thirties, but need to figure something out as my cholesterol levels are much higher than they used to be despite an entirely home cooked diet with no dairy, gluten, soy, caffeine, processed foods (including sugar), and not much animal protein. I have wondered if the coconut products (oil, butter, plain milk) I have started eating over the last two years might have spiked it?

        My current nurse practitioner did suggest fish oil and red yeast rice when I declined the statins. I’m having a tough time finding a fish oil that seems like it wouldn’t be oxidized, exposed to high heat, or chemicals. Any recommendations?

        Thanks so much for your help.

        Dee

        • Suzy Cohen April 10, 2015 at 4:41 pm - Reply

          I’m going to make a brand of fish oils that is clean and pure.

          • Dee April 10, 2015 at 6:04 pm

            I look forward to seeing it! Thanks so much for taking the time to respond to me.

            Dee

        • Chris September 3, 2015 at 1:09 am - Reply

          Nordic Naturals Arctic Cod Liver Oil .not fortified with man made version of vit D

          • Suzy Cohen September 3, 2015 at 1:14 am

            I really like Nordic Naturals- they have great fish oils! They are not the only ones, but they are definitely great.

  74. Noel April 10, 2015 at 10:40 pm - Reply

    Suzy, now why would I want to take any further nutritional advice from the same doctor who attempted to introduce me to statins? I fail to see how he would even remotely understand what vitamins or dosage levels are required to overcome the negative impacts of statins. In fact, he doesn’t even believe that supplements have any efficacy above curing scurvy:) Fortunately , 10 years ago when my GP recommended I take a statin , I did not. Instead, I found an excellent supplement which in turn made me feel better which lead to a daily exercise program which lead to better food choices. I am now 59, my blood pressure,cholesterol,antioxidants are all well within the healthy ranges and I feel like I am in my 30’s again. Yes, the supplement market is a minefield however, there are some excellent products available and therefor no need for you to go and add another brand to the market. I enjoyed your well researched and light hearted article – there is definitely a need to re educate the world on preventative health and anti ageing. Many people are in poor health or dying from the current quick fix pharma products distributed by well meaning, yet un-enlightened medical practitioners 🙂

  75. Marie April 12, 2015 at 2:08 am - Reply

    What is your thought on the use of red yeast rice as a replacement?

    • Suzy Cohen April 12, 2015 at 4:34 am - Reply

      Sure, but you just must know it is exactly like a statin drug, just milder so all the cautions and depletions are the same.

  76. SUSAN SMITH-COWSER April 12, 2015 at 3:42 am - Reply

    Suzy, isn’t it true that it takes cholesterol to make testosterone in our bodies? I’m thinking of my husband, who now has low testosterone, and who started on a statin five to 8 years ago. He is now 53, and needs to take testosterone. At least he is on the bioidentical cream form of it. But couldn’t statins be lowering the testosterone of older men everywhere, but no one will tell them that? AND, i wonder how the statin drug affects the outcome of the testosterone serum testing that his doctor does on him.

    • Suzy Cohen April 12, 2015 at 4:29 am - Reply

      Yes, you are correct, it’s needed to make testosterone. Serum testing for this hormone will be reduced as a result of statin use.

  77. Janice April 12, 2015 at 4:15 am - Reply

    Hi Suzy, I have been on generic Lipitor for 2 years. I don’t like taking medication so I lost 49 pounds and walked 4 miles 7 days a week. I talked with my cardiologist and stopped taking the Lipitor. My Ldl doubled in 6 weeks. I was very disappointed with the result since I lost weight and was excersising. Do you have any other suggestions in ways I can lower my cholesterol? Thank You

  78. Deeanna April 12, 2015 at 1:01 pm - Reply

    What about those of us with familial hyperlipidemia ? What do we do? I asked my Doc to
    put me on statins for my high inflammation. I am 76, eat good, exercise and take care of my
    self. Could a low dose statin every other day help?

  79. Michael Fierro April 12, 2015 at 2:37 pm - Reply

    Suzy
    I am currently taking a low dose (20mg) of pravastatin (the first statin I could tolerate) as well as 10 mg lisinopril and 50 mg (daily) of carvedilol for blood pressure and to keep my heart relaxed.
    I eat a relatively healthy diet (minimal cholesterol or fat content, no red meat, etc) yet my cholesterol and triglycerides remain high.

    My last two blood tests have shown an elevated white blood cell count (12+). Could this be a side effect of my medications as I have no infections or illnesses of which I am aware?

    • Suzy Cohen April 16, 2015 at 11:17 pm - Reply

      It’s certainly possible. The term to look up is leukocytosis. Many drugs cause increases or decreases in white blood cells. It could also be an infection.

  80. Leon Shearer April 12, 2015 at 6:30 pm - Reply

    Dear Suzy,

    I appreciate following your newsletters. This one on statins is interesting and timely. My wife is on Atorvastatin following major heart surgery 18 months ago and I was advised last week by my oncologist to consider statins for the chronic inflammation I have as I deal with prostate cancer which was was diagnosed as very aggressive stage III – IV a bit over four years ago. As there is no history of PC in either side of my family I have consistently felt that some injury induced chronic inflammation and ankyolosing spondylitis first suggested on an MRI 22 years ago set the stage for this. I hope this is not a overload of information, but I am interested in your perspectives Thank you so much, Leon

    • Suzy Cohen April 16, 2015 at 10:37 pm - Reply

      Leon, the statins are known for their strong anti-inflammatory effect and are used in people with cancer sometimes. It’s really a discussion with the oncologist, but yes there is research for this. Of course, there is always the inflammation which sets the stage. You should read my newest article on genes and snps. I just uploaded it.

  81. Obhi April 12, 2015 at 8:49 pm - Reply

    Thanks very much for your post and also for the replies to those who have commented. Did you also see these papers about statins: http://informahealthcare.com/doi/abs/10.1586/17512433.2015.1012494 & http://www.scirp.org/journal/PaperInformation.aspx?PaperID=34065#.VSrY7pSUfqQ ? The first explains why the enthusiasm for statins is based on studies carried out by the manufacturers. The second explains why the adverse effects of statins outweigh any benefits for most people. This is also the conclusion of the NNT analysis: http://www.thennt.com/nnt/statins-for-heart-disease-prevention-without-prior-heart-disease/

    You might find my film You must be nuts! – the business of dementia of interest: https://youtu.be/0QrrBX-6gp0 . As you will see, unfortunately, we realised rather too late that my father’s long-term use of statins contributed to his dementia.

  82. Connie April 13, 2015 at 2:14 pm - Reply

    Hi Suzy,
    Love your books. I had a heart attack a year ago (59 at the time), I had one stent put in and everything else is plugged up. Of course I am on a statin and other medications. I started going to a naturopath as I seemed to be getting nowhere with the doctor. Is it true you can unclog your arteries with the right nutrition, exercise and supplements? I now have a thyroid problem as well but my naturopath has me on the right supplements to balance everything out, hopefully. Thanks for all you do.

  83. Gretchen Carson April 13, 2015 at 4:15 pm - Reply

    Hi Suzy

    I discovered you on Doug Kaufmann’s “Know The Cause” show a few of months ago and enjoyed your informative segments.

    Per your request…here’s my helpful tip, based on my experience, regarding Rx: generic Lipitor. Reduction of sugar to 30 grams a day with moderate exercise took that tightening of the muscles/tendons in the knee area away.

  84. Ruth April 14, 2015 at 4:13 am - Reply

    I don’t know how long I have been on statins. I would like to get off of them safely. I am a 55 year old woman. I am also a diabetic. My cholesterol was 140. The doctor said since I was a diabetic my cholesterol needed to be 100 or less. I have muscle pain and memory loss. I cannot recall words I am wanting to use. Any advise on how to go about this would be appreciated.
    Thank you!

  85. Shelley B April 14, 2015 at 6:03 am - Reply

    I totally agree with you! About 15 years ago I started taking Lipitor. Within 5 years I was suffering from severe muscle pain and weakness and was sent for every test under the sun! Nothing was discovered and I continued to go downhill. I couldn’t even handle the weight of my winter coat across my shoulders. It was a cardiologist that asked if I had tried going off the Lipitor. I had tried a few years earlier for a month but it didn’t seem to make any difference. So after that appointment I went home and started searching on the Internet for links to muscle fatigue and pain and Lipitor.

    What I found caused me to go back to my doctor and say that I didn’t want to take Lipitor any more. I didn’t see results immediately. It was a very slow progress. But when I compared things I could do a year later I knew I was improving. I think there might have been some permanent damage to my muscles but I am way better than I was.

  86. tami brown April 15, 2015 at 9:47 pm - Reply

    I have a question not related to statin drugs My husband takes relpax for headaches. This is the only drug of this kind that relieves his headaches. I am so concerned about him taking this drug. Is there any supplements he can take that will do the same thing as relpax to relieve his headaches? THANKS

    • Suzy Cohen April 15, 2015 at 11:47 pm - Reply

      Hi Tami
      I can’t list all the supplements here, there are too many. Treating and relieving headaches depends on the cause. I wrote about 400 pages on this topic of head pain, the causes and potential cures. Please click on my “shop” tab above, then click on the book cover shown “Headache Free” which was so good it was featured on Dr. Oz Show, Dr. Mercola’s site and a TV show that aired to 200 countries. GREAT book with dozens of potential cures in there!

  87. Deeanna April 17, 2015 at 6:04 pm - Reply

    Thanks for answering my post. I will let you know the results of my blood work in May. I have
    been taking 10 mgs of Pravastatin 3 times a week without any side affects. I am taking it for the high inflammation in the rest of my blood work.

    Deeannna

    • Deeanna March 6, 2016 at 12:14 am - Reply

      On my blood work the statin did not reduce my high cholesterol or inflammation.

  88. Saloman  April 22, 2015 at 11:54 am - Reply

    statin pills is used to reduce the cholestrol.

    is this Zocor pills cause any side effects.because previously i took the lipitor meds.

    • Suzy Cohen April 22, 2015 at 6:01 pm - Reply

      Zocor and Lipitor are completely different chemical compounds, however they are in the same drug category so the side effects are similar.

  89. finance May 8, 2015 at 10:39 pm - Reply

    So why is being overweight such a direct link to diabetes.
    It’s conceivable to accomplish this objective the conventional
    path moreover through an equalized eating methodology and exercise.

    Having said that, the study has shown that just
    about anything that can maximize the metabolism, also can raise the
    weight reduction even if the human being is just resting.

    • Suzy Cohen May 9, 2015 at 6:03 am - Reply

      Adiponectin and leptin balance, and cytokines. Being overweight increases estrogen too. Lots of things collide when a person is producing excessive amounts of cytokines.

  90. Joanne Corcoran May 23, 2015 at 7:40 am - Reply

    My Mom is on a Statin and also Warafin, I would like to have her take the Q10 but she can’t if she is on Warafin, She just got out of the Hospital in March 2015 with CHF and Renal Failure and also COPD, she has low Sodium and also Low Chloride , very low Iron and B12, with a high creatinine level , a very low eGFR of 39 started a Statin ( Simvastatin ) 40mg. 08/13/2013 her tests before this drug were fine, she had a Stroke so this is what they gave her back in 2013 , I guess it finally caught up to her , she is 83 yrs. old and her Health has been declining the past 2 yrs. or more I am going to show her Dr. this article and hopes we can get her back to a better quality of life . Thank you for this.

  91. Jeff Black June 1, 2015 at 11:03 pm - Reply

    I followed a lead here, and found this article quite interesting. As someone who was prescribed statins several years ago and also a highly competitive duathlete (Team USA Member) for quite a few years, I was concerned about the effect of statins on my training. I noticed a marked decrease in recovery while on statins, and made an informed and contentious decision to forgo statins several years ago (I am 50 now). I suffered from borderline high (10-15 points) cholesterol, and at the time was following my doctor’s advice.

    The decline in athletic performance was noticeable, and through experimentation and research tied it back to the use of statins. I have now been off them for several years, and am currently experiencing some of my fastest ever cycling time trials. A lot of it has to do with particle size, since larger particles aren’t as damaging as smaller particles (my gut feeling is that in my case it is a genetic factor more than a catch all high cholesterol problem, it sure as hell isn’t exercise and diet!), however when I asked my GP to test for this he was clueless. Nevertheless this year I am seeking a more knowledgeable GP in the area of sports health rather than someone who specializes in disease treatment (most GP’s). At any event, for me, not taking statins pays off in athletic performance.

    • Suzy Cohen June 2, 2015 at 4:25 am - Reply

      Hi Jeff
      Cleveland lab can test for particle size/number 🙂

  92. Jean Wiggins June 3, 2015 at 3:15 am - Reply

    Hi Suzy,

    When I refused to take a statin, my heart Dr told me to take Red Yeast Rice. I was not aware that it was a statin also. I took it for 2 1/2 years and was getting weaker all the time. In 2013 I had to have my thyroid removed and since then I can only stand for a few minutes and can only walk a very short distance. I also have muscle wasting, muscle spasms and muscle twitching. I don’t think my Endocrinologist knows what to do for me, now he wants me to have an MRI of my brain.

    I have type II Diabetes also and it is getting worse because I am unable to do anything. I spend my day sitting on the sofa watching TV, reading or on the computer.

    • Suzy Cohen June 3, 2015 at 5:33 am - Reply

      Jean do you have my Diabetes Without Drugs book (I wrote it in 2010) and it has the answers you seek regarding diabetes, energy production, I even warned about statins back then. Please review it, or get a copy, it will change your life.

  93. brian June 18, 2015 at 4:20 pm - Reply

    Not that your article has compelled me to do so, but I actually read this after the fact. Be it depression, present circumstances, etc, I have recently stopped taking my drug regime. I know, I might die? I know! My wife marketed Lipitor many years ago and is still an avid cheerleader. When diagnosed with slightly high levels 10 -12 years ago, her and the doctor had me trying the Lipitor. I immediately had a change in my mood, etc ,etc. I stopped. I have always been high energy and happy. The stuff was like a “bat to my head”. Jump ahead, six years ago I had a heart attack and am now on the four drugs the cardiologist put me on. Been disciplined with taking them regularly. I did not mention that the heart attack occurred while I was working out, otherwise, I am a healthy 58 year old, above average male. So come to present, I just have not felt myself for many years, it is like a memory of a wonderful person who I used to be. And by the way, upon mentioning such rhetoric with my cardiologist, he looked at me and said “have you ever sought psychiatric help?” That was a real turn off. So back to present, I am off the drug regime for four days now and am just do a self analysis. And I am Leary of a false analysis, a placebo effect. But today I feel born again. I feel a joy that I used to know. i am not confused and caught up in some cloud of self degregation. Maybe I do need a shrink, but I am a very objective person who would not deny myself of a truth, be it positive or negative. i only want to have answers. I know that statistically the statins save lives, and to dispute this fact within the medical community is heresy, but as absurd as this sounds, I find it heresy to live within a cloud as I do, and so to live happy and die almost sounds better. So why speak so ludicrously? I wonder if there is an alternative to the Statins? By the way, my diet is well above average on the health scale and I do exercise regularly. However I am bad in that I do indulge in Craft beer and rich cookies on a regular basis. Not in abundance, but regularly. They say that diet won’t change cholesterol but 15%? My former internist was not sold on the “Statin bible” And I state it in that manor in relation to an undisputed dogma that can’t be denied! So whether anybody reads this or answers it, it has been good to air my mind of the thoughts. Thanks

    • Suzy Cohen June 18, 2015 at 6:45 pm - Reply

      Hi Brian
      You must be very new to me and my work. You sound like a great well-adjusted guy, trapped on the medication merry-go-round and suffering the effects of drug mugging. Statins mug CoQ10, D and other nutrients from your body so do many heart drugs. CoQ10 depletion and D deficiency can both cause intense personality changes and blues. Wondering if you take a diuretic which has reduced magnesium. The ‘drug holiday’ you just took shows you a glimpse of what you used to be like. I suggest you find a holistic practitioner that can offer natural alternatives to what you are taking. Go to functionalmedicine.org and put in your zip code or city. Grab a copy of my Drug Mugger book.
      Use my search box and read, read, read. You will get your life back, you’re one of the lucky ones 🙂

  94. Betty Prescott August 30, 2015 at 11:40 pm - Reply

    Suzy – My husband was feeling tired, could barely move. His internist removed him from his statin. Told him it could take up to 2 weeks to see if that was the problem. He has had bypass surgery twice so also saw his cardiologist. He ordered a stress test. Turns out his stress test has not changed in 2 years. He is now off his statin for almost 4 weeks and feeling so much better. He says he will never, never go back on it. He was taken off once before but put back on a different one. He also has CHF and after reading your article can’t help but wonder if that is related to the statin. If so, will this improve after he has been off for quite a while?

    • Suzy Cohen September 8, 2015 at 6:47 pm - Reply

      CoQ10 or preferably UBIQUINOL. Have you downloaded my free ebook yet? Read it, it has some answers.

  95. Patricia September 2, 2015 at 12:07 pm - Reply

    My husband was diagnosed with Rhabdomyolysis which the doctor said it was caused by the Zocor he was taking and he stopped it immediately. He still has severe muscle/body pain and weakness. I started given him 200mg of CQ10. Can you suggest any other supplements he may need to help recover from the rhabdo?

    • Suzy Cohen September 8, 2015 at 5:43 pm - Reply

      I’ve written about this a lot, to protect people. Since 1999 I’ve been warning about this very thing so you must be new to my work. Please use my search box to learn about statins, and here’s a free ebook. http://suzycohen.com/the-statin-nightmare-download/
      (I’m not sure if you need to put your email in there or not, but if you’ve already signed up for my newsletter, you will only get it once. Don’t worry about re-entering your email, we scan for duplicates).

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