We all know about heart disease, have suffered from it, or have a close family member that has succumbed to this deadly disease. Heart disease is an all encompassing term that includes: heart attacks CHF (congestive heart failure) heart murmurs arrhythmias (irregular heart beat) infections valve issues and more!
In America, cardiovascular disease is one of the top killers. Many individuals and doctors blame high cholesterol numbers as the primary cause of heart disease. Therefore, pushing more cholesterol meds from the pharmaceutical industry.
The cardiovascular pharmaceutical industry is a huge, 9 billion dollar industry whose focus is pushing more and more drugs. However, much of the research for cholesterol lowering drugs (known as statins) is based on unstable research.
After reading the research on statin drugs, you will begin to see that the percentage of statins in decreasing heart attacks is based on a very small percentage. Even more so, many top researchers believe that it is the anti-inflammatory effects of the drug, not the cholesterol lowering capabilities, that actually decrease the chances of a heart attack.
If you are going by the leading research, it is correct to assume that inflammation is the underlying cause of cardiovascular disease instead of total cholesterol levels. This isn’t saying that cholesterol levels do not play any role. When cholesterol is oxidized, it may cause arterial inflammation that leads to plaque buildup.
When a patient with cardiovascular disease takes statins for lowering cholesterol, it may lower total cholesterol levels, but it does not help with reducing the oxidation. Without reducing oxidation which leads to plaque, these drugs may be helping heart disease along.
Since statins have been designed to destroy the necessary enzymes for cholesterol production, they have been linked to CHF. When statin drugs were first developed, it was suggested to include CoEnzyme 10. However, this was never implemented. CoEnzyme 10 is one of these enzymes that is necessary for cardiovascular energy and heart contractions.
Along with joint pain, liver failure, and fatigue, CHF is now another side effect that has been added to the list of side effects for statin drugs. Instead of focusing on total cholesterol levels, the size and number of the cholesterol particle should be the focus.
Arterial inflammation has been shown by studies to be caused by an increase in cholesterol particles and oxidation. Two things can be taken from these studies: Individuals with low cholesterol have an increased number of cholesterol particles. This puts them at risk for cardiovascular disease. Individuals can have a low cholesterol particle number, while still showing high cholesterol levels. These individuals can have a low risk of heart disease.
Cholesterol can be explained with a simple comparison. Imagine you are riding in the car. The car is a particle of cholesterol, and the individuals in the car are the cholesterol. A particle (the car) is meant for carrying cholesterol. If the particle contains many cholesterol (car is filled with many people), then it is a high total cholesterol. On the other hand, a car that is only filled with one person would be equivalent to a low total cholesterol.
According to this analogy, if you were in a traffic jam, which “cholesterol” would make the traffic jam worse? The answer is obvious. Neither answer. It is the number of cars, aka particles, that make a traffic jam worse, not the number of people (cholesterol) in the cars.
Instead of testing for total cholesterol, the number of cholesterol particles is a predictor for cardiovascular disease. The more cholesterol particles, the higher the risk for heart disease. In an NMR test, the P-LDL and particle size are assessed. The particle amount should be x<1000, and the small particle x<600.
This is a test for a new inflammatory marker that is specific to cellular and arterial inflammation . It is recommended that levels are under 190.
Homocysteine levels should be x<10. Optimal levels are x<8. Elevated homocysteine levels cause inflammation.
CRP is an Inflammatory marker used for predicting cardiovascular disease. Optimal levels are x<0.56 and decent levels are x<1.
It is estimated that about 85% of individuals lack the proper Vitamin D levels. Vitamin D should be tested on every patient. Low levels of Vitamin D have been linked to multiple types of cancers, as well as many hormone problems. Optimal Vitamin D levels are between 60-100. Normal Vitamin D levels can range between 32-100.
HGBA1C tests glucose levels over a 3-6 month time period.
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