Dr. Minkoff talks about cholesterol myths.
Dr. Minkoff here.
There is so much barrage and advertisement about taking medicines that lower cholesterol but I just want to talk about it for a little bit because I don’t believe there is a self-respecting cardiologist who can sleep at night if some of his patients aren’t taking statin drugs. And there’s a very elegant review study that was published in the British Medical Journal, I have just the abstract over here.
And it’s very interesting because they looked at over 80,000 people who were age 60 or more to see the bad cholesterol, the LDL cholesterol. Did high LDL cholesterol equate with shorter lifespan? Because that’s the byline. If you take the drugs and your LDL cholesterol goes down, the standard now is it has to be below a hundred but most cardiologists want it as low as they can get it that you will live longer and your body will be better.
And this study with the British Medical Journal actually says the opposite. It says that longevity which is how long you’re gonna live, is longer if your LDL cholesterol is higher not lower. Having high bad cholesterol, neither one of the cholesterols is bad, they’re both needed. It’s a silly way to
talk about this but high LDL cholesterol is not bad if you want to live long. So if you want to live long don’t take those drugs that drive it down. Now there are reasons why the cholesterol can go high and obviously people we’re in an epidemic of cardiovascular and heart disease, okay. So there are reasons for these things but the reason isn’t high cholesterol and simply approaching it by driving down the the good or bad cholesterol isn’t gonna make it any better.
And so I just want people to sort of see this so that they can understand it and they just don’t go that way because we know that these drugs have other problems with premature dementia and with diabetes and some cancers and driving hormone levels down. So they’re not a panacea and I just like to caution people. The one thing I always feel good about a new patient coming in with, is you can stop your statin drug because it isn’t doing anything for you that is going to help you live longer. Some people are on medications and they have to be on the medications or they have to be on the medications until we’re able to readjust their physiology so that they don’t need them. But that’s one that I always feel safe with, is like it’s not doing anything for you, let’s get it that one off. Because having a low LDL cholesterol isn’t gonna really help you or make you live longer. Okay, hope this helps, see you later.