Is Cholesterol Really Bad for You?

In the recent modern time, an educated, health-conscious person has been fed to the fact that cholesterol are two types and one of them is responsible for all the heart-related problems in the world. The type of cholesterol is differentiated on the basis of the lipoprotein carrier through which the molecule travels through the bloodstream.

The lipoprotein is of two types the low density or the LDL and the high density or the HDL. The
generally known fact is that the LDL cholesterol is the ‘bad cholesterol’ that leads to a fatty buildup in blood vessels and cause atherosclerosis. The plague narrows the arteries and increases the prospect of the patient exposing themselves to heart attack, stroke or any kind of peripheral artery disease where the narrowed artery of the blood vessel is present in other parts of the body apart from the heart.

However, recently the research studies conducted across the globe tells a totally different tale. Researchers around the globe have conducted a study with around 70 thousand heart patients. The analysis revolves around the connection between the occurrence of heart diseases and the amount of cholesterol that is present in the body.

The results obtained from the experiment were quite different from the general notion. It was found that there is apparently no link between the ‘bad cholesterol levels’ and the early or premature deaths of heart patients. Another article or research study conducted concluded on a similar note. It was found that more than 90 percent of the patients that have a high cholesterol level lived a long life.

The results of the above-stated study and many others on a similar line have astonished the doctors and researchers. They have now joined together to supervise a study that re-evaluates the effect of LDL cholesterol on heart functionality.

This has also brought into the question of the use of ‘statins’ that is given to heart patients or probable heart patients to lower the cholesterol levels of the body. The prescription of statins is given to lower the levels of the cholesterol and they have proved to be quite effective in achieving the desired result.

Despite all the alleged effects of statins that are presented as being beneficial, they have been associated with severe trauma and risk factors. These include muscle pain, digestive problems, mental dizziness, and in rare and severe cases may even lead to liver damage. The specific muscle damage caused is known as rhabdomyolysis that is presented as a life-threatening disorder.

Keeping the above effects of statins in mind and the fact that role of cholesterol in heart diseases is being reconsidered. The use of statins and the number of resources that are put together to lower the cholesterol levels are being considered as a waste. It has been brought to light now that cholesterol was never proven as a 100% culprit as the cause for heart-related diseases. It had been portrayed in such a way by the pharmaceutical industry to earn profit from the unproven proposition.

The presented proposition that cholesterol is not the ‘bad guy’ in a heart or vascular-related disorders was done in the most recent APICON (Annual conference of Association of Physicians in India) by Dr. Premanath.

According to the research conducted in India as well as other places, there had been no need of consuming statins on a daily basis. Owing to these recent research, all the medical world is reflecting and discussing the harmful aspects of statins and whether the society really needed to go through its effects.
The bad effect of statins are not the results of recent publications. There is much older research that explains the disastrous effect of statins on the overall population of the people that are intaking it on a regular basis. It has been said that almost no health benefit can result from the continuous administration of statins and approximately more than 20% of the population may be suffering from the severe side effects.

However, it is quite difficult to say that one side is correct and the other is wrong or to choose between the two sides. This is because many of the researchers have claimed that the method of the experiment that determined that cholesterol plays no hand in heart-related disorders, may not have been the correct way to determine things or the pathway may have a flaw in it. Keeping this in mind the one cannot incline towards only one of the research paradigm.

But, one cannot ignore the severe bad effects that are associated with the use of statins. In one of the studies conducted, it was concluded that continued administration of statins has led to Acute Memory Impairment. It was observed that when people who usually used lipid-lowering drugs of non-statin origin, were subjected to statins, their memory was tested after 30 days of exposure.

The results showed strong symptoms of acute memory loss. Although the use of statins has a plethora of cons attached to it, it functions as the main revenue generator in the healthcare and pharmaceutical sector. It is similar to many pharmaceutical products that are present in the market but have major side effects. It has been estimated that generic drugs like statins comprise more than 80% of the market.

As India acts as the hub of all diseases where all the generic drugs are brought to the market, therefore, the patients are being exposed to the severe risks that are associated with it. This all has been done to fulfill the appetites of pharmaceutical and healthcare services by increasing the cost of general treatments and common disease occurrence. It is only the worth of these drugs that make the industry the most flourishing of all.

Databases regarding the same have come to a similar conclusion. It seems like the most famous pharmaceutical companies have convinced a whole generation of patients that they essentially need a cholesterol-lowering strain based drug for the betterment of their health. Now as recent studies have shown a very contrasting tale, where statins have been framed as the bad guy, people are finally getting what wrong had happened. In the US, this has led to a surge of lawsuits against the companies from the people who are suffering from disorders caused by the intake of such drugs.

Apart from this, the main factor that makes these drugs more harmful in India than in any other country is due to a very slow rate of pharmacovigilance that is happening in the country. In India, the pharmacovigilance programme is run by The Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation (CDSCO), under the ministry of health & family welfare and coordinated by the Indian Pharmacopoeia Commission (IPC). The studies regarding it have shown that at global levels the percentage of pharmacovigilance is about 5%, while in India it is just about 1%. So one can assume that whichever drug gets banned in the US due to its harmful effects will at least take more than 3-5 years to finally get restricted in India.

From the above discussion, we can conclude that as the effect of statins in beneficial terms is not that much clear, therefore its use as a sole savior of patients with heart diseases and associated disorders should be reviewed. The review should be done in accordance with the results of the recent studies, so that it may help in the further betterment of the society.

Owing to the problematic data that drug presents and the role of pharmacovigilance team in India with respect to it, statins can be said to have a long and healthy life than it tends to give its regular consumers. As a consumer, we all should be more aware of the cons associated with such drugs so that we may lead a better and healthy life.

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