The C Word

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By Robert K. Stephen

(TORONTO, ON) – The Penniless Pensioner and Cholesterol: On October 30 at at 8:00 pm, CBC’s The Nature of Things will premiere The Cholesterol Question. If you are a geezer, most likely you are on some sort of anti-cholesterol drug such as Crestor or Lipitor. The drugs, known as statins, are the most widely prescribed drugs in the world.

Thank goodness we have David Suzuki to explain to us the issues through this documentary. It’s a complicated subject.

The first shocking fact to be revealed is that 50% of heart attack victims have normal cholesterol. So you pensioners are ingesting cholesterol reducing drugs that may be damaging your liver and brain, but are for your own good.

Gotta reduce that bad LDL.

The documentary suggests, perhaps, an obsession with cholesterol reduction through the use of drugs might be replaced with a healthier lifestyle. More exercise, weight reduction, no smoking or boozing. Those with diabetes are three times more likely to have a heart attack and diabetes most often is a result a poor eating habits.

Keep taking these drugs and risk neurological and liver damage. Get some exercise. It’s all common sense approaches for better cardiac health. Buy a dog and get walking.

Suzuki suggests that perhaps inflammation may be the cause of heart attacks and strokes as it is a big factor in Lupus. Stop inflammation then you might stop heart attacks. There is no easy answer to heart attacks as some 1,000 genes are involved.

We hear from cardiologist Beth Abrahamson that 60% to 80% of people on statins are not protected against heart attacks. Are the benefits of these drugs over rated?

Abrahamson also points to pro inflammatory responses as a precursor for heart attacks.

Suzuki does his best to guide us through this complex subject and, after watching it twice, I feel I have to see it a couple more times to really understand it.

The message is that these cholesterol reducing drugs are simply a tool in the arsenal against heart attacks. A healthy lifestyle is the most effective defence for many. (The Cholesterol Question, Thursday October 30, CBC World Premiere)

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About the Author

Robert Stephen (CSW)
Robert K Stephen writes about food and drink, travel, and lifestyle issues. He is one of the few non-national writers to be certified as a wine specialist by the Society of Wine Educators, in Washington, DC. Robert was the first associate member of the Wine Writers’ Circle of Canada. Be it Spanish cured meat, dried fruit, BBQ, or recycled bamboo place mats, Robert endeavours to escape the mundane, which is why he loves The Square. His motto is, "Have Story, Will Write."Email Robert Stephen
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