My Heart Attack: Can Drugs Help?
Four years ago today, I unexpectedly suffered cardiac arrest. I learned that what happened to me is quite common. The only unusual aspect of it was that against long odds, I survived. To my surprise, I learned that eating only whole plants completely eliminates the risk of heart disease. I was like most Americans, eating meat, dairy products, refined foods, and oils. Our consumption of these foods, with insufficient vegetables, fruits, legumes, and whole grains, results in heart disease being the leading killer in this country. But the disease doesn't have to exist at all.
Many of us are aware through blood test results that we are at risk for heart disease. And aided by misinformation from pharmaceutical companies, we cling to the notion that drugs can save us from heart disease. Sorry to say, research results say they can't.
In my previous post, I cited the study that concluded that statins don't extend life, and I warned about the side effects of taking statin medications such as Lipitor (atorvastatin), Mevacor (lovastatin), Crestor (rosuvastatin) and Zocor (simvastatin). I was on simvastatin myself for a year after my heart attack, and experienced first hand some of the side effects.
In my post, I mentioned that these medications were known to cause memory, thinking, and concentration problems. Recently, the FDA announced a change to the labeling of statin drugs acknowledging that they can cause memory loss and confusion, thus acknowledging what researchers have known for some time. The new labeling also acknowledges that statins can cause hyperglycemia which contributes to Type II diabetes.
It’s also been long known that statins can cause liver damage. The new labeling removes the recommendation for testing for liver damage, not because statins don’t cause liver damage, but because the tests can’t detect the damage!
Here is a link to CNN coverage of the labeling change: http://www.cnn.com/2012/02/28/health/med-fda-statin-labels/index.html
This coverage doesn’t mention the most damning evidence against statins – they don’t increase the length of your life. As I mentioned in my previous post, this meta study concludes that for people who haven’t yet had a heart attack, taking statins does not make you live longer, it just makes your blood test appear as though you are healthier than you really are. http://archinte.jamanetwork.com/article.aspx?articleid=416105
I have been off statins for more than two years, and my last two blood tests have shown my total cholesterol is less than 150 and my LDL (bad cholesterol) is under 80. This good result comes from eating a plant-based whole food diet. The experts say that these numbers (as long as they are achieved without statins) make one heart attack proof.
If you are not yet heart attack proof, please let me know how I can help you get there. Here are reviews of books or DVDs to help educate you on what you need to be doing or why. Or I can personally try to help you with challenges you may face adopting a healthy and life-prolonging eating plan. Please call me if I can help.
John Tanner, 10-11-13
(626) 872-4050 Pacific Time