If you’re relying on statins to minimize your risk of heart attack, you need to keep reading. New research is leading to serious questions regarding their benefits.
Challenging conventional wisdom, a new review of 35 studies is suggesting statin medications don’t offer much benefit in lowering the risk of heart attack, stroke, or preventing death.
High cholesterol is recognized as a risk factor for heart attack and stroke. LDL cholesterol, in particular, is implicated in poor heart health. It collects along arterial walls as plaque, boosting blood pressure and damaging veins and arteries. Statins work to lower LDL.
The new research, however, is suggesting that simply lowering LDL might not reduce the risk of heart disease or mortality. Instead, researchers are suggesting that there is far more than meets the eye.
That perspective is hard to argue with, in my opinion. Statins are certainly one tool that can help a person reduce cholesterol, blood pressure, and heart attack risk, but they are not the full toolbox.
Dr. Robert DuBroff, the author of the study, suggests that the degree of reduction in LDL did not have any correlation with decreasing heart attacks, strokes, or death. This goes against what many experts suggest, but DuBroff contends a more holistic approach is required.
He is essentially suggesting that health is about managing more than one symptom and cannot be sold in a bottle. Instead, he seems to believe in the idea of a more holistic approach where yes, statins are a tool, but taking them does not mean you don’t have to make other heart-healthy decisions.
So, what are the other tools you can utilize to get the most from your statins and build a healthier heart? A balanced diet rich in fiber, fruits, vegetables, healthy fats, and unprocessed meats is one. Another is getting at least 30-minutes of exercise each day.
Lifestyle takes the cake when it comes to disease prevention, management, and risk. Recognizing and using all the available tools in your toolbox is the best way to give your heart what it needs.