According to Statins.News, “statins are one of Big Pharma’s biggest cash-cows: In 2013, the pharmaceutical industry raked in a staggering $29 billion just from statin sales. Estimates suggest that nearly one out of every four Americans over the age of 45 takes a statin drug. Most believe that these drugs are life-savers, healing their high cholesterol while keeping heart attacks at bay — but the savior-status of statins is nothing more than a myth being pushed by Big Pharma. Further, evidence shows that these drugs are more harmful than they are helpful — par for the course when it comes to the pharmaceutical industry, no doubt. One top cardiologist says that this misinformation is costing millions of lives.” (https://www.statins.news/2019-04-08-statins-a-billion-dollar-industry-costing-millions-of-lives.html). This is just the tip of the “deception iceberg” when it comes to cholesterol.
First of all, our bodies need cholesterol, including the so called “bad cholesterol” – the LDL. Cholesterol is not the bad guy, inflammation is. Cholesterol merely shows up at the site of inflammation. Just like every other function in our body, too little is just as bad as too much. All things need to be in balance. Unfortunately, there really is no such thing as “too low” of cholesterol, at least in the conventional medicine world. This, to me, is perhaps the greatest health deception of all. Let me share with you some vital functions of the various types of cholesterol so you can have an appreciation of their value and importance (pay particular attention to the function and purpose of the LDL:
- Cholesterol is a steroid normally found in all body cells and plasma.
- Needed for the breakdown of fats in the gallbladder and the function of Vitamin D and steroid hormones.
- Transports cholesterol to the liver for metabolism to bile acids.
- A must for anti-body manufacturing – antibodies are part of the immune system
- Needed for the manufacture of all hormones
- Necessary for enzyme function
- Necessary for the formation of all cell walls
(Can your body live without LDL? Mine can’t)
- Makes the myelin sheath that covers all nerves, including the spinal cord
- Should be the body’s main source of energy
- Provides cushioning between the organs
- Protection against trauma
Now, if all of these components have vital functions, why would some laboratory reports show a “normal” reference range for total cholesterol as “0-200?” Did you get that, 0?! Meaning it wouldn’t be a problem if a person didn’t have any cholesterol at all! Really?!
In the functional medicine world, the “wholistic, restore your body back to good health” world, the reference range for total cholesterol is 150-200. In fact, if we see a total cholesterol below 150, that is an ominous sign to us. Meaning there is a great potential that there is something seriously going on with the body, not just limited to, but including some types of cancer.
Apparently, the more recent trend for the reference range for total cholesterol is 100-200. I know a couple whose conventional medicine doctor has both, the husband and the wife (even though the husband is the only one who had a heart attack), on a cholesterol medication with the goal of them reaching a total cholesterol of 100. The last I spoke with them their total cholesterol was around 125. 125!
Here is another, very concerning scenario: years ago, in my practice, I had a patient who was only seeing me for chiropractic care, he was under the care of a conventional medicine doc for his “health.” But we would talk the truth about health and wellness. He shared with me that his conventional medicine doc had him on cholesterol meds and that his TOTAL cholesterol was 85!! And he was still on meds! And to top that, he also was receiving regular testosterone shots! As you can see above, the LDL cholesterol plays a vital role for the manufacture of all hormones – including testosterone! Of course he didn’t have any testosterone, he didn’t have near enough cholesterol to make it.
These kinds of scenarios happen all… the… time.
The only reason conventional medicine looks at cholesterol is for cardiovascular concerns. And that’s looking at cholesterol only as the “bad guy.” But as you can see above, cholesterol has many, vital functions that are good for us. If you really want to know if your body’s cholesterol has the potential to cause you a cardiovascular problem, you should look at 2 things: 1) what is your Coronary Risk Factor (CRF) or what is known as the HDL:Total ratio. You want to see 3.0 or less. And 2) a better test would be a VAP test that measures the particle size of the cholesterol molecules. You want to see big, fat, buoyant molecules so they can not get into the blood vessels. As opposed to small molecule particles that can.
I just recently ran my bloodwork on myself. My total cholesterol was 253, but my HDL was 107 giving me an HDL:Total ratio of 2.8. Had I been seeing a conventional medicine doc, he would have had me on cholesterol meds ASAP. Earlier this year I had a CT scan of my heart and there was “0” blockage in my major vessels. I don’t think I need cholesterol meds, do you?
- High cholesterol is NOT a disease!
- The “Coronary Risk Factor (CRF) is determined by dividing your HDL into Total Cholesterol. The results should be 3.0 or less. Above 4.0 is only one coronary risk factor. Others are diabetes, smoking, over weight, family history of heart disease.
- Cholesterol lowering drugs reduce EVERYTHING including HDL/”good” cholesterol
- Increased HDL will help lower LDL
- Triglycerides are stored fats mainly in the liver and adipose tissue
- Increased triglycerides are usually secondary to other disorders including unhealthy diet, lack of regular exercise, diabetes, nephrosis (kidney related diseases) and to drugs (i.e. estrogens, oral contraceptives, cortisone and diuretics).
- Crispy = FAT!
One last truth: For most patients, lowering dietary cholesterol will generally have little effect on decreasing blood cholesterol. Addressing other factors such as exercise, caffeine consumption, smoking, obesity, excessive carbohydrate consumption, endocrine and liver/biliary function will have a greater effect on lowering cholesterol than lowering cholesterol in the diet.
To learn more about cholesterol and other “health myths,” check out my book “Are You Being Deceived About True Wellness” https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0C8RFBX87/ or go to my website at: www.jackiemckool.com