Cholesterol Medication does Have Side Effects

Cholesterol medication increase good cholesterol (HDL) and lower bad cholesterol (LDL) and triglycerides. In so doing, it minimises the chances of heart diseases. According to Mayo clinic, the different types of medication for cholesterol work in different ways. Mayo grouped the medications as follows:

  1. Statins
  2. Bile acid resin binders
  3. Fibrates
  4. Cholesterol absorption inhibitor
  5. Omega-3 fatty acids
  6. Niacins
  7. Niacins and statins combination
  8. Blend of statin and cholesterol absorption inhibitor

The medications come with side effects such as nausea, constipation, diarrhea, pain, stomach pain, weakness, muscle soreness, cramps as well as reacting with grapefruit juice. However, statins were the leading contributors.

A Medical News Today report states that statins increase the risk of developing cataracts. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) warns users of the high risk of developing Type II diabetes.

NPR draws its attention to a study that was undertaken in 2013. The study showed that 17% of the patients experienced side effects. After experienced the side effects, two-thirds of the victims stopped using the medication.

Despite this, some doctors led by Dr. Alexander Turchin, assistant professor, Harvard Medical School still believe that statins are important. He states that the side effects can be dealt with by switching to different varieties.
Dr. Barbara Roberts, the author of “The Truth About Statins,” told NPR that studies don’t show that statins help in preventing heart disease in women hence can’t be ignored.She further added that following a Mediterranean diet offers benefits similar to statins.

The FDA warns consumers of the following:

  • Observing blood liver enzymes on a regular basis. Unfortunately, the monitoring hasn’t been effective in preventing severe injury to the liver.
  • Brain- related impairment such as memory loss, confusion, and forgetfulness has been reported.
    Statin can lead to Type II diabetes and increased sugar levels in blood.


  • Damage to the muscles can occur due to reaction with lovastatin (Mevacor brand).

Nonetheless, Medical News sited that the risks were overshadowed by the benefits.

Mayo clinic pointed that other medications besides statins also cause side effects. Bile acid resin binders such as Questran and Colestid can cause constipation, nausea, gas, bloating, as well as increasing triglycerides. Zetia, a cholesterol absorption inhibitor may cause fatigue, stomach pain, and muscle soreness. Combining Zetia with statin may cause abdominal pain, gas, weakness, and cramps.

Fibrates can cause stomach pain, gallstones, and nausea. A person may experience peptic ulcers, facial flushing, diarrhea, high blood sugar, neck flushing, nausea, vomiting, and gout when using niacin. Mayo said that Vascepa and Lovaza which contain Omega-3 fatty acids may lead to fishy taste, infections, and increased belching.

Source : Newsmax

Omega-6 Fatty Acids May Be Able To Eliminate ‘Bad’ cholesterol

 According to relatively recent research data, ordinary people can reduce the amount of bad LDL (Low-density lipoprotein) Cholesterol in their body by supplementing their diet with foods which are rich in Omega 6 Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids. These new findings came from the Innsbruck Medical University, and it was originally derived from genetic information which came from 100,000 people of European ancestry.

Their studies uncovered a gene which affected blood cholesterol by stimulating the production of a compound, known as Lipoxin. According to the researchers, Lipoxin is produced by Omega-6 Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids, and has many positive and useful properties for people who have health problems, especially those who suffer from cardiovascular diseases. For example, the study provides evidence that aspirin can help to prevent heart problems by increasing the production Lipoxin in the human body.

Senior research author Ivan Tancevski mentioned that their new findings could potentially lead to new therapeutic treatments for preventing or even eliminating cardiovascular diseases and all of their associated Sequelae, such as heart attacks and even stroke. Although data is still relatively limited, the researchers are nonetheless confident that they will eventually find additional useful information.

Ivan Tancevski and his research team have already identified one gene in particular, known as Alox5, which is believed to code for enzymes that increase lipoxins, which also happen to have anti-inflammatory effects on the body, from Omega 6 Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids in order to improve the body’s ability to eliminate large amounts of cholesterol.

The researchers also point out that they have found a unique mechanism by which aspirin may offer additional protection to the body. They indicated, for example, that aspirin can help to reduce cardiovascular diseases, thanks to its antithrombotic effects as well as its anti-inflammatory properties.

The study, along with its contents, were published online on the Cell Press Journal, under Cell Metabolism.

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