Richard asks about lowering cholesterol without statin drugs: Do you know much about how to lower cholesterol without drugs? My doc says that I need to lower mine and since I am ALREADY a vegetarian, she says that my diet is fine, “genetics” is the problem. The only animal products I eat are butter, yogurt and ice cream, oh and salmon too. My sister says that both my father and mother have taken medication for high cholesterol for some time, so I guess I’m right in the cross-hairs. My doc recommended 20mg of a statin drug called Zocor. From what I’ve read, it doesn’t appeal to me much. Besides, I’d hate to lose my virginity : )
I don’t really take any drugs for anything. Thanks for your advice,
High Cholesterol: Truth and Myth
Your question is excellent. The problem with cholesterol is the way that most medical doctors still view the issue. The information your doctor gave you is aboutt 20 years outdated by now. The standard “good cholesterol”/”bad cholesterol” test is over 50 years old! I first learned about one of the newer concepts regarding cholesterol at a symposium called “Preventative Cardiology 2003 Symposium,” in October, 2003 at St. John’s Cardiovascular Research Center, Los Angeles.
The concept being taught, was that cholesterol is only a problem if an LDL sub-fraction called “small, dense, LDL particles” is present. These SD-LDLs were supposed to be the “baddest of the bad.” If not present, the risk for cardiovascular disease was considerably less (in one study, the risk for cardiovascular problems was 3.6 fold more if they were present). So, even if you have moderately elevated LDL cholesterol levels, the bottom line: no SD-LDLs, no big worry.
Advanced Cholesterol Tests
The advanced cholesterol tests for this sub-fraction of LDL are called: NMR Lipo Profile (LabCorp), Lipoprotein Particle Profile (LPP), and LipoprintTM. We can easily order advanced cholesterol test at my Beverly Hills office.
But there’s more! The concept of oxidized cholesterol vs. “cholesterol” in general is something I learned at a seminar in Los Angeles called “Keys To Cardiovascular Health” in October of 2006. The key point was this: Unless your cholesterol is oxidized, there is no dire concern to lower it! In other words, a high cholesterol number is virtually meaningless without knowing if you have oxidized cholesterol or not.
According to research in Nature Medicine published January 26, 2014:Apolipoprotein A1 (apoA1) is the primary protein present in HDL, providing the structure of the molecule that allows it to transfer cholesterol out of the artery wall and deliver it to the liver, from which the cholesterol is excreted. The apoA1 normally gives HDL its cardio-protective qualities, but Dr. J.E. Hazen and colleagues at the Cleveland Clinic have discovered that in the artery wall during atherosclerosis, a large proportion of apoA1 becomes oxidized and no longer contributes to cardiovascular health, but rather, contributes to the development of coronary artery disease.
You want more Apo A1 vs. Apo B, but if the Apo A1 is oxidized it doesn’t help you; it hurts you! I can order the the Apo B to Apo A1 ratio test (CPT 82172) when you come to my office. For this ratio, lower is better. The ApoB/Apo A1 ratio is better at predicting your cardiovascular risk than a standard cholesterol test.
To find out if you have oxidized cholesterol, we can do a simple urine test, available at my office called the Oxidata TM urine test. The Oxidata test can detect if your cholesterol is oxidized or not. If the Oxidata test shows that it is not oxidized, lowering elevated cholesterol would NOT be an urgent problem.
There’s more. The National Centers for Biological Information (ncbi) website contains a plethora of research regarding lowering cholesterol. For example, one study on rats showed that dietary acetic acid reduced serum total cholesterol. This is analogous to having a strong enough stomach acid capability when you eat. But is there a commonly used “remedy” that would disturb your stomach environment more than anything else? Yes. the class of drugs called antacids. That’s right, taking antacids could be a reason why cholesterol goes up in the first place.
8 out of 10 common side effects of cholesterol drugs are related to gastro-intestinal health such as: stomach pain, stomach upset, gas, bloating, cramping, nausea, diarrhea and constipation. Antacids can make these symptoms worse. Taking apple cider vinegar, cranberry juice, or lemon juice with your meal could potentially help make your stomach’s environment good enough to lower cholesterol naturally. The most common whole food supplement we use to support a normal stomach environment is called Zypan. Don’t be fooled by TV ads. Enough stomach acid is necessary. A Lack of stomach acid gives you heartburn.
Another research study showed that pea protein stimulates formation and excretion of bile acids, which leads to a reduced hepatic cholesterol concentration. This means you get less cholesterol in the liver, The liver is what makes cholesterol, normally.
As a matter of fact, cholesterol has an important function in the body. Like preserving brain function and preventing memory loss. It transports essential fats to the places you need them the most, like your brain! It also is a precursor to your hormones. Cholesterol is used to repair vascular abrasions. I first discussed the idea about this relationship between cholesterol and repair of arterial abrasions with my brother, who is an expert in the functional application of nutritional supplements. Afterwards, I saw the same concept being presented in the “Keys to Cardiovascular Health” seminar.
If the “high” cholesterol is being produced as a “protective” mechanism by your body, then why in the world would you need to lower yours? In effect, you would be defeating your body’s innate intelligence. What you really need to do is discuss this whith your doctor and eventually investigate the possible causes of your body’s need to produce extra protection (extra cholesterol); one of the things we do at my office.
The cause of higher cholesterol is generally NOT “genetics.” It is extremely rare for a condition to be truly genetic. Very few chronic diseases are proven as truly genetic in nature. Research demonstrates that our genes are responsive to their environment (see my article about preventing chronic disease). So when doctors want to blame things on genetics, it shows me that they would rather use this outdated “genetics” excuse, than admit they just have no idea about the true causes of high cholesterol. Furthermore, they have no long-term solutions to lower cholesterol without drugs. Drugs are a short term solution; they are not a good 1st choice as a long-term solution.
Fats in the diet, and dietary cholesterol are not the major factors that influence your cholesterol levels. In 2015 the the US Dept. of Health’s Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee finally admitted that cholesterol overconsumption is not a concern. But there is something in the diet that will drive cholesterol up: sugar! You could eat 3 eggs for breakfast with no problem (the yolks have lecithin—good for emulsifying fats), but including a donut for breakfast, or pastries, bread, pasta or potatoes would change your cholesterol drastically.
Our bodies need cholesterol to produce bile, which emulsifies essential dietary fats. Imagine that a person is not fully able to emulsify their essential dietary fats from a lack of bile-acid production, because junk fats have compromised the function of the gall bladder. To compensate, the body produces more cholesterol. Why? In order to produce more bile-acids. It is a back-up mechanism to get all the nutrition needed from the essential fats. What good would be done to lower cholesterol in this case? NONE! Instead it would be better to support essential fat digestion with the correct digestive enzymes such as Multizyme, or a month’s supply of Cholacol before switching to Multizyme for the long term. Then, in that case, there would be no more NEED for higher cholesterol production, by your liver.
“The adverse effects suffered by people taking statins are more common than reported in the media and at medical conferences… Increased rates of cancer, cataracts, diabetes, cognitive impairments and musculoskeletal disorders more than offset the modest cardiovascular benefits of statin treatment.”Expert Review of Clinical Pharmacology, March 2015, Vol. 8, No. 2, Pages 201-210
Cut out high carbohydrate foods like pasta, bread, and potatoes, and eat much less sugar (you will probably lose weight too). Give it a few months before taking your next cholesterol test, and use more specific and advanced cholesterol tests like the ones mentioned above.
Now you can more clearly see the difference between the conventional medical approach of masking your symptoms with statin drugs like Lipitor, simvastatin, lovastatin, or Crestor, vs. our natural medicine, integrative chiropractor’s approach. When you need support against oxidative stress (not just vitamin C, or ascorbic acid), we determine this at my office, along with which digestive enzymes, clinical nutrition, and numerous other possible needs you may have.
Let us help you with The Underlying possibilities WHY Your Cholesterol Is High.
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I have developed a simple, clinical nutrition program to help you lower cholesterol without drugs. Addditionally I have found a potential neurological connection to high cholesterol that is very exciting. By addressing one patien’t concussion neurology and without drugs, her chronic, high cholesterol of over 300 for 2 years came down by 65 points! Make an appointment and we can start right away.
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