Wednesday, December 17, 2008

The Miraculous Healing Power Of Aloe Vera

Most of us know about Aloe Vera's magical ability to heal skin problems: sores, cuts, scrapes, bites, and lesions.

However, not many people are aware that Aloe Vera, when taken internally, has a stunning reputation as a healing substance for all kinds of illnesses and degenerative conditons.

In this two-part post, I'm going to quote Andreas Moritz , Doctor Jon Barron, and Doctor Jeri Heyman. Andreas and Jon Barron are known to most CureZone regulars. Jeri Heyman is the CEO of a company called Herbal Answers. I found her article in a recent newsletter from the Grain and Salt Society. And, of course, I'll also talk about my own experiences with Aloe Vera, including how I grow it for my own consumption.

Let's begin with a passage from THE KEY TO HEALTH AND REJUVENATION by Andreas Moritz, who has a very popular forum here at CureZone.

"Aloe Vera juice, when taken internally, has been found to be effective in almost every illness, including cancer, heart disease, and AIDS. In fact, there is hardly any disease or health problem for which Aloe Vera has not been proved successful."

"It is helpful for all kinds of allergies, skin diseases, blood disorders, arthritis, infections, candida, cysts, diabetes, eye problems, digestive problems, ulcers, liver diseases, hemorrhoids, high blood pressure, kidney stones, and strokes, to name just a few."

"Aloe Vera contains over 200 nutrients, including the vitamins B1, B2, B3, B6, C, E, Folic acid, calcium, magnesium, oopper, barium, sulphate, 18 amino acids, important enzymes, glycosides, polysaccharides, etc."

Andreas adds that Aloe Vera is one of the few substances that can be used to heal radiation burns caused by X-rays or nuclear disasters. He notes that Aloe Vera, when used regularly, reduces the scaling and itching of psoriasis, and greatly improves the appearance of the skin.

Here's a passage from a recent newsletter by Doctor Jon Barron:

"Aloe has been well known for centuries for its healing properties, and both oral intake and topical dressings have been documented to facilitate healing of any kind of skin wound, burn, or scald -- even speeding recovery time after surgery."

"Situations to try it on include blisters, insect bites, rashes, sores, herpes, urticaria, athlete's foot, fungus, vaginal infections, conjunctivitis, sties, allergic reactions, and dry skin."

"Internally, Aloe Vera is showing real promise in the fight against AIDS, and that virus has become undetectible in some patients who used it on a regular basis, due to its immune system stimulant properties."

"It also seems to help in cancer patients (including lung cancer) by activating the white blood cells and promoting growth of non-cancerous cells."

"Other situations in which it appears to work when taken internally, include intestinal worms, indigestion, colitis, hemorrhoids, liver problems such as cirrhosis and hepatitis, prostate problems,and as a general detoxifier."

That's the end of Part 1. If any of that information resonated with you, I hope you'll read Part 2. I'll quote Doctor Jeri Heyman, and tell you how I grow my own aloe, and how I eat it.

PART TWO:

in Part 1, I quoted Andreas Moritz and Jon Barron about the amazing healing properties of Aloe Vera.

Here are some passages from a recent newsletter of the Grain and Salt Society (where I buy my Celtic seasalt). The column was by Doctor Jeri Heyman. In it, she quotes from a book by Dr. Robert Davis entitled, ALOE VERA: A SCIENTIFIC APPROACH.

"Fresh Aloe Vera is profoundly anti- inflammatory. The Aloe plant contains naturally occurring plant sterols that act similarly to synthetic steroids in blocking inflammation. Fresh Aloe's largest polsaccharides enhance the immune cells inflammation-control mechanisms."

"Aloe Vera is tissue-regenerating in three different ways. The large polysaccharides, unique to fresh, raw Aloe Vera, have been demonstrated to stimulate the release of growth factor by the immune cells, thus stimulating new tissue production."

"A different size polysaccharide in Aloe, directly stimulates the tissue production cells to produce new tissue. And third, the Aloe plant contains plant-growth-factors that act like human growth factors to stimulate the regeneration of tissue."

"The constituents in fresh Aloe Vera can directly enhance the immune cell function up to 10 times greater than normal. This helps to clean up the digestive and elimination systems. The immune cells can gobble up to 10 times more unwanted yeast, fungus, and undigested food when enhanced by Aloe."

"Aloe Vera is the most penetrating substance on Earth. It catapults itself into cells 5 times more easily than water, bringing nutrients into cells and encouraging the outflow of toxic waste."

End of quotes. Now I'd like to tell you how I grow my own Aloe Vera, and how I eat it.

About ten years ago, a friend here in Florida gave me an Aloe Vera plant. I transplanted it to a larger pot, and put it out on the screened, back porch of my condo. It wasn't long before little baby Aloe plants were poking their heads up through the soil, right beside their mother.

So I bought a big grow-box, and transpanted the Aloes into it. They thrived! Every now and then, I would cut a stalk and rub the soothing gel on my face. But in those days, I wasn't eating it.

By 2003, my single plant had reproduced itself thousands of times. I now have three large grow-boxes full of Aloe Vera on the back porch, and two window-size boxes. And in just the last month, I've given away five more window boxes full of Aloe plants to friends. Some of those Aloes are big and strong enough to fight off muggers. I'm amazed every time I walk out there!

About a year ago, I began eating the gel. This was before I'd read any of the material I just quoted to you. My intuition told me to do it -- and I listen to my intuition.

I cut a piece of Aloe stalk about 4" long. Then I slice it vertically, and peel back the sides. Messy business! Next, I put the aloe stalk in my mouth, gel side up. and use my top front teeth to scrape the gel into my mouth. I swizzle it around my mouth for 30 seconds or so, and then swallow it. And, of course, before I ever cut it, I say to the Aloe, "You are my food. May the best of you, become the best of me." That's my Grace for all meals!

Next, I rub the mostly gel-less stalk on my skin: different parts on different days. If you've never rubbed fresh Aloe Vera gel into your skin, then you have a blissful experience ahead of you.

I do that every day. In the late 1990's, I wondered why I was growing so much aloe on my porch. Now I know! Often, we prepare ourselves for important changes, months or years or decades before they're needed -- or at least, I do.

Yes, you can buy Aloe Vera juice at health food stores. But it's expensive, and may well be diluted. I advise people to grow their own. Aloe Vera is a VERY easy plant to grow. It needs no TLC; just some water when it gets dry.

You can't grow ten year's worth of Aloe Vera overnight. I advise you to buy a half-dozen or more plants, and transplant them into a large grow-box. A year from now, you'll need two grow-boxes. They don't need lots of sunlight. Bright light is sufficient.

If any of this information resonated with you, give Aloe Vera a try. You can always use a good bottled product until your garden takes off. If I suffered from any of the conditions mentioned by the Doctors, I'd be taking Aloe Vera in some form every day.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Not Milk

 
 

Milk and dairy products cause heart disease, diabetes and osteoporosis -- interview with Robert Cohen

by Mike Adams, NaturalNews Editor www.naturalnews.com

The following is part three of an interview with Robert Cohen, author of "Milk, the Deadly Poison," and www.Notmilk.com

Mike Adams: What is it that drove you to have this kind of interest and energy to pursue the truth about milk and dairy products?

Robert Cohen: Three little girls named Jennifer, Sarah, and Lizzie -- my daughters. I wanted them to have healthy bodies. I wanted them not to live four years of high school life with zits all over their body like their dad did. And you know something? They've been zit free! No acne, and if you look at my book, Milk A to Z, I take every letter of the alphabet and fill in something about milk. Z is for zits, and we know that these cows are actually being milked before they give birth, and that milk is different milk -- it's milk instructing mammary tissue to grow. Little girls have changed these days, but we find that with the secretion of all of these androgens, the cows are constantly using the androgens to produce other hormones. Teenage acne is improved the second we give up milk. It takes a couple of weeks, and the acne's gone. And these androgens stimulate the sebaceous glands, which are the glands that cause the acne, cause the zits.

So we find a dairy link to a number of human conditions. And I'm not the first to say this -- Dr. Spock said this. Dr. Spock sold 75 million copies of his book on child care. The only book that sold more than Dr. Spock's book in history is the Bible. Dr. Spock said that no human, no child, no adult needs cow's milk -- it's a deception on the government's part to promote. And we're learning, as I've said, more doctors are learning today something they were not taught in medical school. You want to look at the etiology of allergies and diabetes? You look at diabetes, you look at the New England Journal of Medicine, July 31, 1992 -- right there, you can look it up! It said that exposure to these bovine proteins, bovine serum lactobumin is a trigger for insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus, and a few months later, October of '92, Scientific America talked about the dairy slogan,"Milk, it does a body good." It said, "Milk, it does a body good -- it sounds a little hollow these days."

Mike Adams: Can you give a brief summary of -- you've mentioned a few here, diabetes and acne, heart disease is mentioned in your book quite prominently -- but what other chronic diseases are, say, aggravated or even caused by chronic milk consumption?

Robert Cohen: Well, you know, that's an interesting question. Let's look at the Big Five -- in America, the number one killer is heart disease, and then we've got osteoporosis and cancer, and diabetes and asthma. We look at nations where they drink milk, we find these diseases are common. We look at nations where cheese consumption has tripled in the last 30 years, like England and France and Canada and the United States, we find also a tripling of asthma and breast cancers. Guess what country has the highest rate of breast cancer? Number one in breast cancer rate, Denmark, followed by Norway, followed by Holland, followed by Sweden -- are you detecting a trend?

Mike: Milk consumption.

Robert Cohen: Let's play some more trivia with you, Mike. We know breast cancer -- what country has the highest rate of heart disease?

Mike Adams: Well, I'm still thinking the United States.

Robert Cohen: Nope! Denmark, Norway, Holland and Sweden -- you're going to get it sooner or later! Bone disease, heart disease, breast cancer -- see where are we going with this? --highest rates of dairy consumption. We're seeing absolute correlations between these diseases and dairy consumption, and I can give you the reason. We have much more than just national epidemiological studies -- we have mechanisms by which these diseases occur, in breast cancer and every cancer, thousands of things cause cancer. Every time we pick up a newspaper there's a new thing identified as causing cancer.

But thousands of things cause it -- once you get it in your body, one thing makes it grow, and the one thing that makes it grow is the most powerful growth hormone you make in your body called insulin growth factor. And remarkably, the greatest miracle of science, of nature, is that this hormone in a cow's body and in a human body is identical. As a matter of fact, out of 4700 different species of mammal and hundreds of millions of different proteins in nature, there's only one hormone in the entire animal kingdom that is identical between two species -- human and cow IGF-1, which has been called the key factor in the growth and proliferation of breast cancer, lung cancer, prostate cancer, every human cancer.

Mike Adams: Now of course, the dairy industry says that all of these hormones are destroyed through pasteurization and they don't get absorbed by humans who consume their products. We know that's not true, but why is that?

Robert Cohen: Let's analyze that statement, because maybe they're right, and if they're right, that means breastfeeding doesn't work. So if you're thinking that breastfeeding doesn't work, then go ahead and drink your cow's milk, but if by some remote chance you're thinking, Well, maybe breastfeeding does work, well by drinking the cow's milk you're breastfeeding, and you're taking the hormones, and in a very efficient way, more efficient than even nature, because nature finds a way to make lots of something. Like, if you look at fish, at codfish -- they're laying tens of thousands of eggs. Some species of fish lay over half a million eggs, because the fish, somehow there's some innate knowledge that has determined that most of those eggs are going to be eaten by predators. Most of those eggs will not survive to become new baby fish.

Well, the body works the same way -- you make millions and millions of sperm. You make millions and millions of cells. You make enough so that something survives. And in the case of this hormone, IGF-1, your body is constantly making it, and it's broken down very rapidly, or bound to other protein receptors. But in the case of cow's milk, we've improved upon nature -- we have cow's milk where normally these proteins are gone very rapidly. We homogenize milk - in other words, we take the milk and make the fat molecules between 10 and 100 times smaller. We make many more of them -- a pint of milk can contain a trillion tiny fat molecules. They envelop and protect these hormones, which naturally, most of them are destroyed. So now we have a mechanism by which we double the amount of this powerful growth hormone in your body, and where it usually is broken down in less than a second or two, it now remains active for up to 30 minutes. When it finds an existing cancer, which is also common, that is the turn-on mechanism. And that's why the nations that are drinking the most milk today and eating the most cheese are the ones with the highest rates of every human cancer.

Mike Adams: Let's just clarify for the consumers out there which products have these hormones in them. Because it's not just liquid milk. It's everything that's dairy, right?

Robert Cohen: Yeah, that's right! Everything that's dairy. You've got liquid milk in cheese, and sour cream, and butter. That's what milk is. When you use 21 pounds of milk to make a pound of butter, or 10 pounds of milk to make a pound of hard cheese, or 8 pounds of milk to make a pound of sherbet...

Mike Adams: You're concentrating all of those...

Robert Cohen: You're concentrating the hormones, you're concentrating the dioxins, you're concentrating the saturated fat, which we know is good for you of course. That's what milk is, and that's what these dairy products are -- concentrated milk products. If you've got one unit of something bad, you don't want to have ten units of it concentrated.

Mike Adams: Indeed. There have been companies, of course, independent dairy producers, who have been producing milk, and putting right on the label that this is produced without bovine growth hormones.

Robert Cohen: But there's really no difference to me between the bovine growth hormone, which has been genetically engineered, and the naturally occurring growth hormone. It's all the same.

Mike Adams: I've recommended to readers they take a 30-day no-dairy test. Seven days is also plenty, if you're aware of your body, to see the difference, but what can people really expect to change. You've mentioned some of the things, but what about the long-term health improvements? If someone gives up milk, what can they expect to happen in a month or in a year?

Robert Cohen: Well, you know, it's interesting you ask that question, because the Townsend Medical Letter, which is a doctor's letter written by doctors for doctors, over 180,000 get it, in the May of 1995 issue, they talked about cow's milk, the symptoms, that they've been linked to a variety of health problems -- mucus production, hemoglobin loss, allergies, and numbers 8, 9, and 10 on their list were mood swings, depression, and irritability. Now, you think about people who have mood wings, depression and irritability, and many people blame it on Epstein-Barr virus, being middle-age crisis prone.

Mood swings, depression and irritability -- you take estrogen every day, with progesterone and melatonin and all of these different female hormones that are coming from pregnant cows, and it's going to mess you up. I can't even tell you what it's even going to do to you. But I know that we become very hormonal, depressed, mood swings, depression and irritability -- give it up. It really is an easy solution. You can spend thousands of dollars with your doctor, and take all sorts of medication, and give kids Ritalin, but there's no need for it! Just go not milk -- completely dairy-free.

Mike Adams: Right! It is amazing -- so often, people go to their doctor and they get drugs, just to mask the symptoms caused by simple dietary choices.

Robert Cohen: And they teach the doctors none of this in medical school, although many of them are learning on their own. They're learning because they go with their patients and they say, "Stay off the milk for a while." And they do, and they get dramatic results, especially with attention deficit disorder, autism -- we're seeing such dramatic changes in children who go completely dairy-free.

Mike Adams: What about the long-term prevention of chronic disease?

Robert Cohen: There's a place on this planet where they have more people living over age 100 than anywhere else, where the average woman lives to age 86, where people don't even need x-ray machines because they don't get breast cancer or osteoporosis. That place is 160 islands between Japan and Taiwan called Okinawa. Now the book was written by Wilcox and Suzuki called "The Okinawa Plan," and you read that these people are eating 1/20th the amount of calcium that we do, yet they don't get bone breaks.

And you'll read the analysis of calcium intakes all over the world -- South Africa they're eating under 100 milligrams a day, in America 980, and yet we have 14 times the rate of pelvic fractures. It's not the calcium you eat, it's not the cow's milk you eat -- it's the protein, the animal protein that causes the acid condition in the blood which your body must neutralize, and it does so by leaching calcium from your bones. And this is the real science -- this is not the goofy milk mustache ad marketing -- this is the real science that you find in peer-reviewed scientific journals, the truth that most Americans are not getting.

Mike Adams: And yet most Americans think if you have fragile bones or the symptoms of osteoporosis, you have to drink more milk!

Robert Cohen: Which is accelerating the bone loss because of the tremendous amount of sulfur-based amino acids.

Mike Adams: And of course, there are lots of prescription drugs they can take to further mask those symptoms.

Robert Cohen: Which is a shame because they cause a cascading of events. I mean, look at what women take to prevent bone loss -- Premerin? You know what Premerin is? Premerin is one of the number-one prescribed drugs in America. It is what it sounds like -- Premerin -- pregnant mare urine. It comes from horses -- they keep horses in bonds, hooked up to devices that collect their urine. If you scratch one of those little yellow pills, it smells just like pee. That's what it is, the estrogen from pregnant mares, and you know what? We're not drinking estrogen from pregnant mares, but we're drinking estrogen from pregnant cows in the form of their milk. Again, before they give birth they have milk, and that milk is containing female hormones to stimulate their own mammary tissue to grow larger. That's why our little girls look different today.

Mike Adams: Let's see, we're getting our food from cow pus and our medicines from horse urine, something's wrong with this picture, huh?

Robert Cohen: Wonderful world we live in, huh? Progress.

Mike Adams: Let's talk about infant mortality with cow's milk too...

Robert Cohen: Well, it's interesting you mention that. The American journals really don't like to pick on the dairy industry, and reject many of these articles, but we find, there's a really great journal, one of the world's respected journals, called the Lancet, the British journal. And the Lancet, June 4, 1994, I believe it was, they published a study on sudden infant death syndrome showing that the lung tissue in the cells shows bronchial inflammation similar to asthma from dairy proteins. So children are having their last meal before they die, and what it is, is a bottle of cow's milk formula. And the children fed cow's milk -- the Lancet since 1960 has been doing a series of articles on sudden infant death and showing that hypersensitivity to milk protein is implicated as a cause of sudden infant death syndrome.

Mike Adams: Let's talk about marketing. The dairy industry, for many years, they focused on the message that milk gave you healthy bones. And now recently, they're focused on weight loss -- milk is a weight loss drink, which I find somewhat hilarious...

Robert Cohen: Yeah, of course! You drink something with a lot of calories and a lot of fat in it with growth hormones, of course you're going to lose weight! Makes all the sense in the world. As a matter of fact, little infants, they're supposed to have half their weight after three months -- of course, they double their weight, don't they, after three months? A weight-loss product -- that's absurd!

Mike Adams: How do you think the dairy industry, I would say, gets away with making these implications and sort of these claims in their marketing and advertising? How can they do this?

Robert Cohen: Well understand that on this planet we've got about a quarter of a million different journals, and it's really easy to get something published. And, what differentiates one publication from another is the PC -- you know what the PC is? It's not the personal computer. It's the press conference. What you do is you throw a press conference in the Plaza Hotel in New York, and you invite the key members of the press, and make them know that at lunchtime they're having giant shrimp cocktail and roast beef. They're going to be there to report the story, and you give them a really beautifully prepared press kit, and you've written the story for them, and it's in the papers the next day, it's on television, and that's how America's perception constantly is stroked. And when they have a half a billion dollars a year budget to constantly promote these things and produce these stories and these phony studies, hey -- that's just what they do. They do it well.

But you know, it's funny, sometimes the dairy industry is the gang that couldn't shoot straight. Remember that movie? Robert DeNiro, it's a movie out of the 70s about the mafia, and everything they do they do it wrong? The dairy industry has done these milk mustache ads, and one of the ads, when you talk about strong bones, had the cast of the one of the doctor shows on TV, with the three doctors posing with x-rays of their body. And in all of the bodies, the hips were deteriorated with bone disease -- very funny. Two male doctors, one female, and they were all female doctors with shriveled-up hearts that you could see, deteriorated bone density.

Mike Adams: But the average person wouldn't recognize that, right?

Robert Cohen: No, but they do things, again, to just shoot themselves in the foot. They hire vegans to do milk ads, they hire people who are already sick from milk. Larry King -- can you imagine him doing a milk mustache ad right after he had triple-bypass surgery? Every day the average American is eating from milk and dairy the same cholesterol contained in 53 slices of bacon. You do that all your life, by age 53, you have the same cholesterol as contained in a million slices of bacon, and you wonder why heart disease is America's number one killer.

Mike Adams: What about all the science the dairy industry produces to claim milk is good for you?

Robert Cohen: You know something interesting? The dairy industry sponsors studies, and as a researcher, I could design any study I want to and prove anything I want to based upon the parameters of the study and the species of mammal I use. But the dairy industry has done studies with humans, and they say, "Here's a glass of milk. Drink the glass of milk." And the subject does, and ten minutes later -- "How do you feel? Do you have mucus? No? Great." Headline in paper because they've got a great press conference: "Drinking milk does not cause mucus."

Now, you say that to any marathon runner or triathelete or opera singer or Broadway star, they know that using dairy products causes mucus. They have to stay away from it or they're not going to be able to perform. And that's not a scientific study, that's just something they just know. It's a given! Yet, the study, the science shows that drinking milk doesn't cause mucus. Well, I told you the reaction to bovine serumlactobumin, to casein, the milk protein casein, the histamine production takes 12 to 15 hours. So, you're not going to keep a subject in the laboratory for 12 to 15 hours. "Drink a glass of milk -- do you have mucus? No? Great. Milk doesn't cause mucus." Of course it does! And it causes asthma attacks, and it causes these allergic reactions.

And Flo-Jo's autopsy -- go to notmilk.com, and right in the middle column you'll see Flo-Jo with the results of the autopsy, and it's just terrifying what this does, and how it kills six to eight thousand Americans every year! It's not going to kill everybody who eats a slice of pizza, but everybody is going to have the histamines and the mucus.

Mike Adams: Well, hey, Big Tobacco says nicotine isn't addictive, Big Sugar says sugar doesn't cause diabetes and obesity -- why not the dairy industry saying that milk doesn't create mucus in the human body, huh?

Robert Cohen: Well, they can get away with it, and again, these other industries don't finance the amounts of studies -- Robert Heaney gets $7 million a year at the University of Creighton to put out stuff like this, and every month it's another study -- it doesn't cause breast cancer, it doesn't cause allergies -- it's nonsense. We have thousands of studies that show that milk is just something we should not be consuming.

Mike Adams: So, is the consumer any better off to go for so-called natural milk products like organic milk?

Robert Cohen: Let me say something that most people do not understand. You will not find one, not even one molecule of genetically engineered bovine growth hormone in any glass of milk consumed in America today. Because the bovine growth hormone that has been genetically engineered is injected into the cow's rump. By the time it works on the cow's brain, it stimulates her to make milk containing more of those naturally occurring hormones. So whether you're drinking organic milk, or milk from cows treated with that hormone, the milk that results is going to be exactly the same. Exactly the same hormones -- the genetically engineered cows will give you milk with more hormones, but you won't be drinking genetically engineered hormones. You'll just be drinking more of those naturally occurring hormones.

Mike Adams: So it's just a concentration difference.

Robert Cohen: It's just a difference of number of those hormones. It's all the same hormone in the milk -- genetically engineered milk does not contain genetically engineered hormones. It works on the brain to stimulate the cow to make milk containing more hormones. But it's the same hormones you would get in an organic glass of milk, and those hormones are dangerous. The good old wholesome milk hormones are dangerous. The ones that we thought were so wholesome are so dangerous, and shouldn't be in your body.

Mike Adams: I gave up milk years ago, and after doing so, my sinuses cleared up, digestion was much easier, I had more energy, less fatigue. It was an amazing transformation.

Robert Cohen: Well, it's something you noticed, and it's something anybody will notice right away. You can read the propaganda from the dairy industry, and you can go to my website, http://www.notmilk.com, and read. I've written a column every day for the last 5 years. But when it comes down to it, you are your best doctor. Try seven days -- don't eat any dairy products -- no milk or cheese -- 7 days. And on day 8, go treat yourself to pizza, and have ice cream for dessert, see what happens on day 9.

Mike Adams: If you dare, right?

Robert Cohen: Well, during the first 7 days, the mucus, the phlegm -- you're going to lose three to four quarts of mucus that are clogging your kidney, spleen, pancreas -- all your internal organs. You don't even know it's there! Because it's what the average American eats every day. When you cleanse yourself, it's like a fog lifts out of your body.

Mike Adams: Did you say 3 quarts -- how much mucus did you say there?

Robert Cohen: Three to four quarts. Can you imagine? It's evenly dispersed throughout all of your internal organs so that your kidneys are a sponge for mucus. I have an autopsy of a very famous American athlete. Go back to Flo-Jo when she won her gold medal in the Olympics, and she died after she did a milk mustache ad, after she ate pizza -- fifteen hours after she had her last meal, she died and in her stomach were 250 cubic centimeters of undigested mozzarella cheese, 15 hours after she ate it, and the body was in such distress because it couldn't break that down that her body produced a tremendous amount of histamines, which made a tremendous amount of mucus. She had one drug in her body, Benadryl, which is an antihistamine -- she knew she was congested.

And the coroner slicing through her kidney described the thick, viscous phlegm that came out of the kidney, the entire lungs, the trachea and the tracheal-bronchial tree were acutely, in the coroner's words, were acutely congested from mucus. She even had finger marks on her throat, and that pizza she ate, she ate her last meal at 3 o'clock in the afternoon and died at 6 a.m. the next day -- 15 hours later, that mozzarella was still not digested, and the congestion from that… that's why I say seven days no dairy, have pizza for dinner, ice cream for dessert, the next morning, you're going to wake up so congested, so mucusy, it's depressing what it does to you. You diminish your lung capacity, sexual drive, it messes you up in the toilet -- it's nice to be dairy-free for that week, because once you see both extremes, I can't imagine how anybody would go back to using dairy products.

Mike Adams: Isn't it true that drinking milk even increases body odor and makes you stink?

Robert Cohen: The Japanese used to call Americans "the butter people." Because they could smell us -- they could smell the rotten, putrefying milk and dairy in our skin, and I eat entirely a plant-based diet now, and when I lecture, when I go on tour, I can smell people, and it really is in the sense of smell. But you don't know it until you live that lifestyle, and then it's like a secret handshake that people from the planet vega have! Vegans can smell other people…they know.

Mike Adams: It's funny that you mention that -- I was thinking about that this morning, riding on a bike trail, and I can smell people as I pass them, and it's not only just from their diet but also the laundry detergent they use with fragrance, just loaded up with fragrance.

Robert Cohen: You can smell it coming out of them. And it really is something….you are what you eat. I find, if you were to ask me the key to health, the key to health versus disease, is animal protein is very different from plant protein. And for years, vegetarians would argue that it's the same protein -- you get everything the same! It's not the same protein. Animal protein has a lot more of two amino acids - one is methianine, and the other is cysteine, and those two amino acids have as their central atom sulfur. Now, imagine the smell of rotten eggs infusing into every cell of your body. The sulfur rotten egg smell is what we smell. It's what vegans or vegetarians smell on meat-eaters. And the more chicken you eat, the more you're going to stink. And the more you're going to stink and your own body fluids are going to stink. That TV show Sex and the City had a very special episode regarding that, but we may not go into that in this interview.

But vegans, people who are eating a plant-based diet, are eating very clean fuel for their bodies. And of course, milk is liquid meat. Milk and dairy products are the worst form of these polluting substances. Not only with the tremendous dioxin level, but with the tremendous amount of sulfur. You don't want that rotten egg smell -- that's what accelerates heart disease, and that's what accelerates bone loss. So that's why we find the people living in nations where they eat the most dairy products are the ones with the highest rates of osteoporosis and heart disease. That's the reason.

Mike Adams: It's interesting too that when people go off of milk for a period of several months, they will find their taste changes, and then if they were to take a sip of milk again, they would find it rather disgusting. I've heard this from many people, I've experienced it myself.

Robert Cohen: Right. That's true.

Mike Adams: What happened with you in that regard? Did you ever go back and try a sip of milk?

Robert Cohen: No, I did not, although I was eating, a year after I made the discovery, I was still eating milk chocolate, and that was my weakness, without recognizing that it takes 4 pounds of milk to make one pound of milk chocolate. So, I was getting it in different forms. I would occasionally eat a slice of bread that had milk powder in it. Now, I'm pretty obsessive about it. I have zero dairy, and I haven't had any for six or seven years, but I've occasionally made mistakes, but not of recent times. Do I salivate when I see pizza? Absolutely. Do I remember how delicious it was? Sure. I cook pizza at home, and now most restaurants will make you a cheeseless pizza. You can have a lot of fun with a cheeseless pizza.

Mike Adams: I do soy cheese pizzas from time to time, but try to stay away from pizza in general. But I agree with you -- the idea of sinking your teeth into a pile of cheese still sounds good.

Robert Cohen: You know something? These foods are delicious, but, I don't want to necessarily see you live to be 100 years old. Living to be 100 or 110 is not the top priority. The important thing is not living a long life -- it's dying well. Because the average American spends 10 to 20 years dying and suffering, and giving all of your money back to your doctor in that period.

Mike Adams: What kinds of additional information can people find at your website, http://www.notmilk.com?

Robert Cohen: Well, you can have a little bit of fun, and you can read, right in the middle up top, the average pus count in your milk. If I held out a glass of milk and said, "Here drink this, it has only 100 pus cells," you wouldn't do it, but the average quart of milk sold in America last year contained 319 million pus cells. That's the average quart of milk. But you can go right down the list, which I've included on the column, and you can see that the state of Maryland has 350 million pus cells in a quart of milk. You can see that the state of Mississippi has 442 million, in the sate of Mississippi, it would be illegal to sell milk if it were in Europe or in Canada -- 400 million is their magic number.

Mike Adams: So why does this vary from one state to another, Robert?

Robert Cohen: It varies because of geographic regions -- generally, the hotter you get the more bacterial count in milk, the more ulcers the cows get on their udders, the more mastitis, the more pus they put into the milk. These are sick animals.

Mike Adams: I think most people who aren't familiar with this subject would expect that somebody is in control and making sure that pus isn't going into the drinking milk.

Robert Cohen: But that's what milk is. See, a cow filters through her udder every single day 10,000 liters of blood. And milk, white milk, is actually dead white blood cells, and they're somatic cells, or pus cells. That's what milk is -- it's pus. Pus is not dangerous -- it's not one of the dangerous things in milk, it's just disgusting. But it's delicious -- ever eat pus mixed into sugar and freezing it? Ice cream, but it's yummy! But what else can you find on the Not Milk site? There's a whole expose I've done on some of the goofy milk mustache ads.

You can also find a wonderful letter written by a breast cancer surgeon to his patients, Dr. Robert Kradjian. I call the Famous Milk Letter, right at the very top of the page, and it's explained in layperson's terms how milk is something that causes a number of discomforts and diseases for people. The root of childhood allergies, of eczema, of earaches, of bedwetting, and again, this is not me saying it -- I'm just a guy bringing all of these things together. The chief of pediatrics of Johns Hopkins Medical School, Dr. Frank Oski, wrote a book about milk, and it was called "Don't Drink Your Milk," because of what he observed over his entire career milk did to children. Nothing good about it.

Mike Adams: Speaking of books, what books can people find through the traditional channels -- Amazon or Barnes and Noble, that you've authored?

Robert Cohen: I've just written a new book called "God's Nutritionist." And it's really a very special book. It's based on the work of the most translated author in history of American literature, a woman by the name of Ellen White, who over 100 years ago was writing about vegetarianism and animal rights, and she actually started a movement in America that now includes 13 million vegetarians, and it's called the Seventh-Day Adventists. So, that's my new book, "God's Nutritionist," I have a book called "Milk A to Z," I have, of course, "Milk: the Deadly Poison," which is of course a very subtle title, and I have a new one coming out called "Food for Thought." In any event, that's the agenda, but "God's Nutritionist" is doing very, very well. It's a bestseller already.

Mike Adams: Do you think your message is getting across to more and more people? Are you getting through to people, or are people just, they don't want to hear this?

Robert Cohen: For the most part people don't want to hear this. For the most part pizza and ice cream are too delicious! But, those people who do hear it, and who really do take the message, the type 2 diabetes goes away. The heart disease is a dramatic change. The allergies go away, the congestion goes away, and you've experienced it yourself, Mike. You're a great spokesperson for this. Those people who do it find that things change.

Mike Adams: Just to wrap this up, Robert, http://www.notmilk.com is your website. You have daily articles there, and do you have an e-mail newsletter?

Robert Cohen: I have an e-mail newsletter, you can subscribe to it, it's free, and it's probably the largest daily newsletter on the internet. Many thousands of people read my letter every day, and I've got some good columns coming up. Quite often my columns end up as front page news in different newspapers. I spend full-time doing this.

Mike Adams: And people can look for "God's Nutritionist," and the upcoming title "Food for Thought."

Robert Cohen: "God's Nutritionist" is 500 quotations about vegetarianism, and it also contains quote from scientific journals supporting vegetarianism.

Mike Adams: And they can find that through all the traditional channels?

Robert Cohen: It will be in any bookstore -- Barnes and Noble, Amazon, of course.

The Miraculous Power Of Prayer

Dear friends:

Back in the mid-1990s I began attending the Pine Castle United Methodist Church in Orlando, Florida. Although as a kid I had been raised a Methodist, I knew that the UMC denomination as a whole had gone liberal, but this particular church had a Spirit-filled pastor who believed and honored the Bible.

One day a member told me about another member of the church who had a ministry of healing. As you should know, this is one of the gifts, or manifestations, or the Spirit described in 1 Corinthians 12, along with the gift or miracles and seven other gifts, for a total of nine. Oddly, these gifts are sometimes denied, or explained away, in the apostate church today, but they are real nevertheless.

The person I was told about was a layman I would soon come to know and appreciate, a man named Jack McGuire. I discovered that Jack was real and the report about him was very real.

Now, some 13 years later, Jack has just completed a book about his amazing life and experiences, titled "Jesus and Me." The book is well-written, easy to read, and is a compelling page-turner.

Jack is allowing me to offer it free online to the public, and my Webmaster friend, Mike Vest in Virginia, has put it on my Web site for me. I am thrilled to be able to make it available to you.

This 60-page book is an amazing testimony of the truth and unchanging nature of God's Word and promises, and the power of faith in that Word. I pray many will be blessed and edified by it, and that many bodies will be miraculously healed.

The book is at http://choicesforliving.com/docs/Jack_McGuire_Jesus_and_Me.pdf

May God and His Word be glorified.

God bless you,

Jim

Friday, November 28, 2008

SPECIAL PRE HOLIDAY OFFER NOTIFICATION. TESLA SHIELD AT 1CENT BID

SPECIAL NOTICE FROM DR. KIRSTY STEWART LIFE TECHNOLOGY MARKETING DEPARTMENT.
 
You will be delighted to know that we have ten Tesla Shields up for grabs at our Ebay Store. The Tesla Shields start bidding at 1cent and all ten auctions expire today at 6PM PST.
 
This will be the last opportunity to purchase a Tesla Shield at a discount price as we will be discontinuing the 1cent auctions as of today.
 
Thanks, Kirsty
 
Visit the Life Technology Ebay Store now at the link below:
 

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

The Dangers Of Statin Drugs

Dangers of Statin Drugs: What You Haven't Been Told About Popular Cholesterol-Lowering Medicines

By Sally Fallon and Mary G. Enig, PhD

Hypercholesterolemia is the health issue of the 21st century. It is actually an invented disease, a "problem" that emerged when health professionals learned how to measure cholesterol levels in the blood. High cholesterol exhibits no outward signs--unlike other conditions of the blood, such as diabetes or anemia, diseases that manifest telltale symptoms like thirst or weakness--hypercholesterolemia requires the services of a physician to detect its presence. Many people who feel perfectly healthy suffer from high cholesterol--in fact, feeling good is actually a symptom of high cholesterol!

Doctors who treat this new disease must first convince their patients that they are sick and need to take one or more expensive drugs for the rest of their lives, drugs that require regular checkups and blood tests. But such doctors do not work in a vacuum--their efforts to convert healthy people into patients are bolstered by the full weight of the US government, the media and the medical establishment, agencies that have worked in concert to disseminate the cholesterol dogma and convince the population that high cholesterol is the forerunner of heart disease and possibly other diseases as well.

Who suffers from hypercholesterolemia? Peruse the medical literature of 25 or 30 years ago and you'll get the following answer: any middle-aged man whose cholesterol is over 240 with other risk factors, such as smoking or overweight. After the Cholesterol Consensus Conference in 1984, the parameters changed; anyone (male or female) with cholesterol over 200 could receive the dreaded diagnosis and a prescription for pills. Recently that number has been moved down to 180. If you have had a heart attack, you get to take cholesterol-lowering medicines even if your cholesterol is already very low--after all, you have committed the sin of having a heart attack so your cholesterol must therefore be too high. The penance is a lifetime of cholesterol-lowering medications along with a boring lowfat diet. But why wait until you have a heart attack? Since we all labor under the stigma of original sin, we are all candidates for treatment. Current edicts stipulate cholesterol testing and treatment for young adults and even children.

The drugs that doctors use to treat the new disease are called statins--sold under a variety of names including Lipitor (atorvastatin), Zocor (simvastatin), Mevacor (lovastatin) and Pravachol (pravastatin).

How Statins Work

The diagram below illustrates the pathways involved in cholesterol production. The process begins with acetyl-CoA, a two-carbon molecule sometimes referred to as the "building block of life." Three acetyl-CoA molecules combine to form six-carbon hydroxymethyl glutaric acid (HMG). The step from HMG to mevalonate requires an enzyme, HMG-CoA reductase. Statin drugs work by inhibiting this enzyme--hence the formal name of HMG-CoA reductase inhibitors. Herein lies the potential for numerous side effects, because statin drugs inhibit not just the production of cholesterol, but a whole family of intermediary substances, many if not all of which have important biochemical functions in their own right.

Consider the findings of pediatricians at the University of California, San Diego who published a description of a child with an hereditary defect of mevalonic kinase, the enzyme that facilitates the next step beyond HMG-CoA reductase.1 The child was mentally retarded, microcephalic (very small head), small for his age, profoundly anemic, acidotic and febrile. He also had cataracts. Predictably, his cholesterol was consistently low--70-79 mg/dl. He died at the age of 24 months. The child represents an extreme example of cholesterol inhibition, but his case illuminates the possible consequences of taking statins in strong doses or for a lengthy period of time--depression of mental acuity, anemia, acidosis, frequent fevers and cataracts.

Cholesterol is one of three end products in the mevalonate chain. The two others are ubiquinone and dilochol. Ubiquinone or Co-Enzyme Q10 is a critical cellular nutrient biosynthesized in the mitochondria. It plays a role in ATP production in the cells and functions as an electron carrier to cytochrome oxidase, our main respiratory enzyme. The heart requires high levels of Co-Q10. A form of Co-Q10 called ubiquinone is found in all cell membranes where it plays a role in maintaining membrane integrity so critical to nerve conduction and muscle integrity. Co-Q10 is also vital to the formation of elastin and collagen. Side effects of Co-Q10 deficiency include muscle wasting leading to weakness and severe back pain, heart failure (the heart is a muscle!), neuropathy and inflammation of the tendons and ligaments, often leading to rupture.

Dolichols also play a role of immense importance. In the cells they direct various proteins manufactured in response to DNA directives to their proper targets, ensuring that the cells respond correctly to genetically programmed instruction. Thus statin drugs can lead to unpredictable chaos on the cellular level, much like a computer virus that wipes out certain pathways or files.

Squalene, the immediate precursor to cholesterol, has anti-cancer effects, according to research.

The fact that some studies have shown that statins can prevent heart disease, at least in the short term, is most likely explained not by the inhibition of cholesterol production but because they block the creation of mevalonate. Reduced amounts of mevalonate seem to make smooth muscle cells less active, and platelets less able to produce thromboxane. Atherosclerosis begins with the growth of smooth muscle cells in side artery walls and thromboxane is necessary for blood clotting.

Cholesterol Synthesis

Cholesterol Synthesis Diagram

Cholesterol

Of course, statins inhibit the production of cholesterol--they do this very well. Nowhere is the failing of our medical system more evident than in the wholesale acceptance of cholesterol reduction as a way to prevent disease--have all these doctors forgotten what they learned in biochemistry 101 about the many roles of cholesterol in the human biochemistry? Every cell membrane in our body contains cholesterol because cholesterol is what makes our cells waterproof--without cholesterol we could not have a different biochemistry on the inside and the outside of the cell. When cholesterol levels are not adequate, the cell membrane becomes leaky or porous, a situation the body interprets as an emergency, releasing a flood of corticoid hormones that work by sequestering cholesterol from one part of the body and transporting it to areas where it is lacking. Cholesterol is the body's repair substance: scar tissue contains high levels of cholesterol, including scar tissue in the arteries.

Cholesterol is the precursor to vitamin D, necessary for numerous biochemical processes including mineral metabolism. The bile salts, required for the digestion of fat, are made of cholesterol. Those who suffer from low cholesterol often have trouble digesting fats. Cholesterol also functions as a powerful antioxidant, thus protecting us against cancer and aging.

Cholesterol is vital to proper neurological function. It plays a key role in the formation of memory and the uptake of hormones in the brain, including serotonin, the body's feel-good chemical. When cholesterol levels drop too low, the serotonin receptors cannot work. Cholesterol is the main organic molecule in the brain, constituting over half the dry weight of the cerebral cortex.

Finally, cholesterol is the precursor to all the hormones produced in the adrenal cortex including glucocorticoids, which regulate blood sugar levels, and mineralocorticoids, which regulate mineral balance. Corticoids are the cholesterol-based adrenal hormones that the body uses in response to stress of various types; it promotes healing and balances the tendency to inflammation. The adrenal cortex also produces sex hormones, including testosterone, estrogen and progesterone, out of cholesterol. Thus, low cholesterol--whether due to an innate error of metabolism or induced by cholesterol-lowering diets and drugs--can be expected to disrupt the production of adrenal hormones and lead to blood sugar problems, edema, mineral deficiencies, chronic inflammation, difficulty in healing, allergies, asthma, reduced libido, infertility and various reproductive problems.

Enter the Statins

Statin drugs entered the market with great promise. They replaced a class of pharmaceuticals that lowered cholesterol by preventing its absorption from the gut. These drugs often had immediate and unpleasant side effects, including nausea, indigestion and constipation, and in the typical patient they lowered cholesterol levels only slightly. Patient compliance was low: the benefit did not seem worth the side effects and the potential for use very limited. By contrast, statin drugs had no immediate side effects: they did not cause nausea or indigestion and they were consistently effective, often lowering cholesterol levels by 50 points or more. During the last 20 years, the industry has mounted an incredible promotional campaign--enlisting scientists, advertising agencies, the media and the medical profession in a blitz that turned the statins into one of the bestselling pharmaceuticals of all time. Sixteen million Americans now take Lipitor, the most popular statin, and drug company officials claim that 36 million Americans are candidates for statin drug therapy. What bedevils the industry is growing reports of side effects that manifest many months after the commencement of therapy; the November 2003 issue of Smart Money magazine reports on a 1999 study at St. Thomas' Hospital in London (apparently unpublished), which found that 36 percent of patients on Lipitor's highest dose reported side effects; even at the lowest dose, 10 percent reported side effects.2

Muscle Pain and Weakness

The most common side effect is muscle pain and weakness, a condition called rhabdomyolysis, most likely due to the depletion of Co-Q10, a nutrient that supports muscle function. Dr. Beatrice Golomb of San Diego, California is currently conducting a series of studies on statin side effects. The industry insists that only 2-3 percent of patients get muscle aches and cramps but in one study, Golomb found that 98 percent of patients taking Lipitor and one-third of the patients taking Mevachor (a lower-dose statin) suffered from muscle problems.3 A message board devoted to Lipitor at forum.ditonline.com (update 09 JUL 2007: reader alerted us the forum is now defunct) contained more than 800 posts, many detailing severe side effects. The Lipitor board at http://www.rxlist.com/ contains more than 2,600 posts (click on Message Boards at upper left and then choose Lipitor; also note that as of 09 JUL 2007 there are 3,857 messages).

The test for muscle wasting or rhabdomyolysis is elevated levels of a chemical called creatine kinase (CK). But many people experience pain and fatigue even though they have normal CK levels.4

Tahoe City resident Doug Peterson developed slurred speech, balance problems and severe fatigue after three years on Lipitor--for two and a half years, he had no side effects at all.5 It began with restless sleep patterns--twitching and flailing his arms. Loss of balance followed and the beginning of what Doug calls the "statin shuffle"--a slow, wobbly walk across the room. Fine motor skills suffered next. It took him five minutes to write four words, much of which was illegible. Cognitive function also declined. It was hard to convince his doctors that Lipitor could be the culprit, but when he finally stopped taking it, his coordination and memory improved.

John Altrocchi took Mevacor for three years without side effects; then he developed calf pain so severe he could hardly walk. He also experienced episodes of temporary memory loss.

For some, however, muscle problems show up shortly after treatment begins. Ed Ontiveros began having muscle problems within 30 days of taking Lipitor. He fell in the bathroom and had trouble getting up. The weakness subsided when he went off Lipitor. In another case, reported in the medical journal Heart, a patient developed rhabdomyolysis after a single dose of a statin.6 Heel pain from plantar fascitis (heel spurs) is another common complaint among those taking statin drugs. One correspondent reported the onset of pain in the feet shortly after beginning statin treatment. She had visited an evangelist, requesting that he pray for her sore feet. He enquired whether she was taking Lipitor. When she said yes, he told her that his feet had also hurt when he took Lipitor.7

Active people are much more likely to develop problems from statin use than those who are sedentary. In a study carried out in Austria, only six out of 22 athletes with familial hypercholesterolemia were able to endure statin treatment.8 The others discontinued treatment because of muscle pain.

By the way, other cholesterol-lowering agents besides statin drugs can cause joint pain and muscle weakness. A report in Southern Medical Journal described muscle pains and weakness in a man who took Chinese red rice, an herbal preparation that lowers cholesterol.9 Anyone suffering from myopathy, fibromyalgia, coordination problems and fatigue needs to look at low cholesterol plus Co-Q10 deficiency as a possible cause.

Neuropathy

Polyneuropathy, also known as peripheral neuropathy, is characterized by weakness, tingling and pain in the hands and feet as well as difficulty walking. Researchers who studied 500,000 residents of Denmark, about 9 percent of that country's population, found that people who took statins were more likely to develop polyneuropathy.10 Taking statins for one year raised the risk of nerve damage by about 15 percent--about one case for every 2,200 patients. For those who took statins for two or more years, the additional risk rose to 26 percent.

According to the research of Dr. Golomb, nerve problems are a common side effect from statin use; patients who use statins for two or more years are at a four to 14-fold increased risk of developing idiopathic polyneuropathy compared to controls.11 She reports that in many cases, patients told her they had complained to their doctors about neurological problems, only to be assured that their symptoms could not be related to cholesterol-lowering medications.

The damage is often irreversible. People who take large doses for a long time may be left with permanent nerve damage, even after they stop taking the drug.

The question is, does widespread statin-induced neuropathy make our elderly drivers (and even not-so-elderly drivers) more accident prone? In July of 2003, an 86-year-old driver with an excellent driving record plowed into a farmers' market in Santa Monica, California, killing 10 people. Several days later, a most interesting letter from a Lake Oswego, Oregon woman appeared in the Washington Post:12

"My husband, at age 68, backed into the garage and stepped on the gas, wrecking a lot of stuff. He said his foot slipped off the brake. He had health problems and is on medication, including a cholesterol drug, which is now known to cause problems with feeling in one's legs.

"In my little community, older drivers have missed a turn and taken out the end of a music store, the double doors of the post office and the front of a bakery. In Portland, a bank had to do without its drive-up window for some time.

"It is easy to say that one's foot slipped, but the problem could be lack of sensation. My husband's sister-in-law thought her car was malfunctioning when it refused to go when a light turned green, until she looked down and saw that her food was on the brake. I have another friend who mentioned having no feeling in her lower extremities. She thought about having her car retrofitted with hand controls but opted for the handicapped bus instead."

Heart Failure

We are currently in the midst of a congestive heart failure epidemic in the United States--while the incidence of heart attack has declined slightly, an increase in the number heart failure cases has outpaced these gains. Deaths attributed to heart failure more than doubled from 1989 to 1997.13 (Statins were first given pre-market approval in 1987.) Interference with production of Co-Q10 by statin drugs is the most likely explanation. The heart is a muscle and it cannot work when deprived of Co-Q10.

Cardiologist Peter Langsjoen studied 20 patients with completely normal heart function. After six months on a low dose of 20 mg of Lipitor a day, two-thirds of the patients had abnormalities in the heart's filling phase, when the muscle fills with blood. According to Langsjoen, this malfunction is due to Co-Q10 depletion. Without Co-Q10, the cell's mitochondria are inhibited from producing energy, leading to muscle pain and weakness. The heart is especially susceptible because it uses so much energy.14

Co-Q10 depletion becomes more and more of a problem as the pharmaceutical industry encourages doctors to lower cholesterol levels in their patients by greater and greater amounts. Fifteen animal studies in six different animal species have documented statin-induced Co-Q10 depletion leading to decreased ATP production, increased injury from heart failure, skeletal muscle injury and increased mortality. Of the nine controlled trials on statin-induced Co-Q10 depletion in humans, eight showed significant Co-Q10 depletion leading to decline in left ventricular function and biochemical imbalances.15

Yet virtually all patients with heart failure are put on statin drugs, even if their cholesterol is already low. Of interest is a recent study indicating that patients with chronic heart failure benefit from having high levels of cholesterol rather than low. Researchers in Hull, UK followed 114 heart failure patients for at least 12 months.16 Survival was 78 percent at 12 months and 56 percent at 36 months. They found that for every point of decrease in serum cholesterol, there was a 36 percent increase in the risk of death within 3 years.

Dizziness

Dizziness is commonly associated with statin use, possibly due to pressure-lowering effects. One woman reported dizziness one half hour after taking Pravachol.17 When she stopped taking it, the dizziness cleared up. Blood pressure lowering has been reported with several statins in published studies. According to Dr. Golumb, who notes that dizziness is a common adverse effect, the elderly may be particularly sensitive to drops in blood pressure.18

Cognitive Impairment

The November 2003 issue of Smart Money19 describes the case of Mike Hope, owner of a successful ophthalmologic supply company: "There's an awkward silence when you ask Mike Hope his age. He doesn't change the subject or stammer, or make a silly joke about how he stopped counting at 21. He simply doesn't remember. Ten seconds pass. Then 20. Finally an answer comes to him. 'I'm 56,' he says. Close, but not quite. 'I will be 56 this year.' Later, if you happen to ask him about the book he's reading, you'll hit another roadblock. He can't recall the title, the author or the plot." Statin use since 1998 has caused his speech and memory to fade. He was forced to close his business and went on Social Security 10 years early. Things improved when he discontinued Lipitor in 2002, but he is far from complete recovery--he still cannot sustain a conversation. What Lipitor did was turn Mike Hope into an old man when he was in the prime of life.

Cases like Mike's have shown up in the medical literature as well. An article in Pharmacotherapy, December 2003, for example, reports two cases of cognitive impairment associated with Lipitor and Zocor.20 Both patients suffered progressive cognitive decline that reversed completely within a month after discontinuation of the statins. A study conducted at the University of Pittsburgh showed that patients treated with statins for six months compared poorly with patients on a placebo in solving complex mazes, psychomotor skills and memory tests.21

Dr. Golomb has found that 15 percent of statin patients develop some cognitive side effects.22 The most harrowing involve global transient amnesia--complete memory loss for a brief or lengthy period--described by former astronaut Duane Graveline in his book Lipitor: Thief of Memory.23 Sufferers report baffling incidents involving complete loss of memory--arriving at a store and not remembering why they are there, unable to remember their name or the names of their loved ones, unable to find their way home in the car. These episodes occur suddenly and disappear just as suddenly. Graveline points out that we are all at risk when the general public is taking statins--do you want to be in an airplane when your pilot develops statin-induced amnesia?

While the pharmaceutical industry denies that statins can cause amnesia, memory loss has shown up in several statin trials. In a trial involving 2502 subjects, amnesia occurred in 7 receiving Lipitor; amnesia also occurred in 2 of 742 subjects during comparative trials with other statins. In addition, "abnormal thinking" was reported in 4 of the 2502 clinical trial subjects.24 The total recorded side effects was therefore 0.5 percent; a figure that likely under-represents the true frequency since memory loss was not specifically studied in these trials.

Cancer

In every study with rodents to date, statins have caused cancer.25 Why have we not seen such a dramatic correlation in human studies? Because cancer takes a long time to develop and most of the statin trials do not go on longer than two or three years. Still, in one trial, the CARE trial, breast cancer rates of those taking a statin went up 1500 percent.26 In the Heart Protection Study, non-melanoma skin cancer occurred in 243 patients treated with simvastatin compared with 202 cases in the control group.27

Manufacturers of statin drugs have recognized the fact that statins depress the immune system, an effect that can lead to cancer and infectious disease, recommending statin use for inflammatory arthritis and as an immune suppressor for transplant patients.28

Pancreatic Rot

The medical literature contains several reports of pancreatitis in patients taking statins. One paper describes the case of a 49-year-old woman who was admitted to the hospital with diarrhea and septic shock one month after beginning treatment with lovastatin.29 She died after prolonged hospitalization; the cause of death was necrotizing pancreatitis. Her doctors noted that the patient had no evidence of common risk factors for acute pancreatitis, such as biliary tract disease or alcohol use. "Prescribers of statins (particularly simvastatin and lovastatin) should take into account the possibility of acute pancreatitis in patients who develop abdominal pain within the first weeks of treatment with these drugs," they warned.

Depression

Numerous studies have linked low cholesterol with depression. One of the most recent found that women with low cholesterol are twice as likely to suffer from depression and anxiety. Researchers from Duke University Medical Center carried out personality trait measurements on 121 young women aged 18 to 27.30 They found that 39 percent of the women with low cholesterol levels scored high on personality traits that signalled proneness to depression, compared to 19 percent of women with normal or high levels of cholesterol. In addition, one in three of the women with low cholesterol levels scored high on anxiety indicators, compared to 21 percent with normal levels. Yet the author of the study, Dr. Edward Suarez, cautioned women with low cholesterol against eating "foods such as cream cakes" to raise cholesterol, warning that these types of food "can cause heart disease." In previous studies on men, Dr. Suarez found that men who lower their cholesterol levels with medication have increased rates of suicide and violent death, leading the researchers to theorize "that low cholesterol levels were causing mood disturbances."

How many elderly statin-takers eke through their golden years feeling miserable and depressed, when they should be enjoying their grandchildren and looking back with pride on their accomplishments? But that is the new dogma--you may have a long life as long as it is experienced as a vale of tears.

Any Benefits?

Most doctors are convinced--and seek to convince their patients--that the benefits of statin drugs far outweigh the side effects. They can cite a number of studies in which statin use has lowered the number of coronary deaths compared to controls. But as Dr. Ravnskov has pointed out in his book The Cholesterol Myths,31 the results of the major studies up to the year 2000--the 4S, WOSCOPS, CARE, AFCAPS and LIPID studies--generally showed only small differences and these differences were often statistically insignificant and independent of the amount of cholesterol lowering achieved. In two studies, EXCEL, and FACAPT/TexCAPS, more deaths occurred in the treatment group compared to controls. Dr. Ravnskov's 1992 meta-analysis of 26 controlled cholesterol-lowering trials found an equal number of cardiovascular deaths in the treatment and control groups and a greater number of total deaths in the treatment groups.32 An analysis of all the big controlled trials reported before 2000 found that long-term use of statins for primary prevention of heart disase produced a 1 percent greater risk of death over 10 years compared to a placebo.33

Recently published studies do not provide any more justification for the current campaign to put as many people as possible on statin drugs.

Honolulu Heart Program (2001)

This report, part of an ongoing study, looked at cholesterol lowering in the elderly. Researchers compared changes in cholesterol concentrations over 20 years with all-cause mortality.34 To quote: "Our data accords with previous findings of increased mortality in elderly people with low serum cholesterol, and show that long-term persistence of low cholesterol concentration actually increases risk of death. Thus, the earlier that patients start to have lower cholesterol concentrations, the greater the risk of death. . . The most striking findings were related to changes in cholesterol between examination three (1971-74) and examination four (1991-93). There are few studies that have cholesterol concentrations from the same patients at both middle age and old age. Although our results lend support to previous findings that low serum cholesterol imparts a poor outlook when compared with higher concentrations of cholesterol in elderly people, our data also suggest that those individuals with a low serum cholesterol maintained over a 20-year period will have the worst outlook for all-cause mortality [emphasis ours]."

MIRACL (2001)

The MIRACL study looked at the effects of a high dose of Lipitor on 3086 patients in the hospital after angina or nonfatal MI and followed them for 16 weeks.35 According to the abstract: "For patients with acute coronary syndrome, lipid-lowering therapy with atorvastatin, 80 mg/day, reduced recurrent ischemic events in the first 16 weeks, mostly recurrent symptomatic ischemia requiring rehospitalization." What the abstract did not mention was that there was no change in death rate compared to controls and no significant change in re-infarction rate or need for resuscitation from cardiac arrest. The only change was a significant drop in chest pain requiring rehospitalization.

ALLHAT (2002)

ALLHAT (Antihypertensive and Lipid-Lowering Treatment to Prevent Heart Attack Trial), the largest North American cholesterol-lowering trial ever and the largest trial in the world using Lipitor, showed mortality of the treatment group and controls after 3 or 6 years was identical.36 Researchers used data from more than 10,000 participants and followed them over a period of four years, comparing the use of a statin drug to "usual care," namely maintaining proper body weight, no smoking, regular exercise, etc., in treating subjects with moderately high levels of LDL cholesterol. Of the 5170 subjects in the group that received statin drugs, 28 percent lowered their LDL cholesterol significantly. And of the 5185 usual-care subjects, about 11 percent had a similar drop in LDL. But both groups showed the same rates of death, heart attack and heart disease.

Heart Protection Study (2002)

Carried out at Oxford University,37 this study received widespread press coverage; researchers claimed "massive benefits" from cholesterol-lowering,38 leading one commentator to predict that statin drugs were "the new aspirin."39 But as Dr. Ravnskov points out,40 the benefits were far from massive. Those who took simvastatin had an 87.1 percent survival rate after five years compared to an 85.4 percent survival rate for the controls and these results were independent of the amount of cholesterol lowering. The authors of the Heart Protection Study never published cumulative mortality data, even though they received many requests to do so and even though they received funding and carried out a study to look at cumulative data. According to the authors, providing year-by-year mortality data would be an "inappropriate" way of publishing their study results.41

PROSPER (2002)

PROSPER (Prospective Study of Pravastatin in the Elderly at Risk) studied the effect of pravastatin compared to placebo in two older populations of patients of which 56 percent were primary prevention cases (no past or symptomatic cardiovascular disease) and 44 percent were secondary prevention cases (past or symptomatic cardiovascular disease).42 Pravastatin did not reduce total myocardial infarction or total stroke in the primary prevention population but did so in the secondary. However, measures of overall health impact in the combined populations, total mortality and total serious adverse events were unchanged by pravastatin as compared to the placebo and those in the treatment group had increased cancer. In other words: not one life saved.

J-LIT (2002)

Japanese Lipid Intervention Trial was a 6-year study of 47,294 patients treated with the same dose of simvastatin.43 Patients were grouped by the amount of cholesterol lowering. Some patient had no reduction in LDL levels, some had a moderate fall in LDL and some had very large LDL reductions. The results: no correlation between the amount of LDL lowering and death rate at five years. Those with LDL cholesterol lower than 80 had a death rate of just over 3.5 at five years; those whose LDL was over 200 had a death rate of just over 3.5 at five years.

Meta-Analysis (2003)

In a meta-analysis of 44 trials involving almost 10,000 patients, the death rate was identical at 1 percent of patients in each of the three groups--those taking atorvastatin (Lipitor), those taking other statins and those taking nothing.44 Furthermore, 65 percent of those on treatment versus 45 percent of the controls experienced an adverse event. Researchers claimed that the incidence of adverse effects was the same in all three groups, but 3 percent of the atorvastatin-treated patients and 4 percent of those receiving other statins withdrew due to treatment-associated adverse events, compared with 1 percent of patients on the placebo.

Statins and Plaque (2003)

A study published in the American Journal of Cardiology casts serious doubts on the commonly held belief that lowering your LDL-cholesterol, the so-called bad cholesterol, is the most effective way to reduced arterial plaque.45 Researchers at Beth Israel Medical Center in New York City examined the coronary plaque buildup in 182 subjects who took statin drugs to lower cholesterol levels. One group of subjects used the drug aggressively (more than 80 mg per day) while the balance of the subjects took less than 80 mg per day. Using electron beam tomography, the researchers measured plaque in all of the subjects before and after a study period of more than one year. The subjects were generally successful in lowering their cholesterol, but in the end there was no statistical difference in the two groups in the progression of arterial calcified plaque. On average, subjects in both groups showed a 9.2 percent increase in plaque buildup.

Statins and Women (2003)

No study has shown a significant reduction in mortality in women treated with statins. The University of British Columbia Therapeutics Initiative came to the same conclusion, with the finding that statins offer no benefit to women for prevention of heart disease.46 Yet in February of 2004, Circulation published an article in which more than 20 organizations endorsed cardiovascular disease prevention guidelines for women with several mentions of "preferably a statin."47

ASCOT-LLA (2003)

ASCOT-LLA (Anglo-Scandinavian Cardiac Outcomes Trial--Lipid Lowering Arm) was designed to assess the benefits of atorvastatin (Lipitor) versus a placebo in patients who had high blood pressure with average or lower-than-average cholesterol concentrations and at least three other cardiovascular risk factors.48 The trial was originally planned for five years but was stopped after a median follow-up of 3.3 years because of a significant reduction in cardiac events. Lipitor did reduce total myocardial infarction and total stroke; however, total mortality was not significantly reduced. In fact, women were worse off with treatment. The trial report stated that total serious adverse events "did not differ between patients assigned atorvastatin or placebo," but did not supply the actual numbers of serious events.

Cholesterol Levels in
Dialysis Patients (2004)

In a study of dialysis patients, those with higher cholesterol levels had lower mortality than those with low cholesterol.49 Yet the authors claimed that the "inverse association of total cholesterol level with mortality in dialysis patients is likely due to the cholesterol-lowering effect of systemic inflammation and malnutrition, not to a protective effect of high cholesterol concentrations." Keeping an eye on further funding opportunities, the authors concluded: "These findings support treatment of hypercholesterolemia in this population."

PROVE-IT (2004)

PROVE-IT (PRavastatin Or AtorVastatin Evaluation and Infection Study),50 led by researchers at Harvard University Medical School, attracted immense media attention. "Study of Two Cholesterol Drugs Finds One Halts Heart Disease," was the headline in the New York Times.51 In an editorial entitled "Extra-Low Cholesterol," the paper predicted that "The findings could certainly presage a significant change in the way heart disease patients are treated. It should also start a careful evaluation of whether normally healthy people could benefit from a sharp drug-induced reduction in their cholesterol levels."52

The Washington Post was even more effusive, with a headline "Striking Benefits Found in Ultra-Low Cholesterol."53 "Heart patients who achieved ultra-low cholesterol levels in one study were 16 percent less likely to get sicker or to die than those who hit what are usually considered optimal levels. The findings should prompt doctors to give much higher doses of drugs known as statins to hundreds of thousands of patients who already have severe heart problems, experts said. In addition, it will probably encourage physicians to start giving the medications to millions of healthy people who are not yet on them, and to boost dosages for some of those already taking them to lower their cholesterol even more, they said."

The study compared two statin drugs, Lipitor and Pravachol. Although Bristol Myers-Squibb (BMS), makers of Pravachol, sponsored the study, Lipitor (made by Pfizer) outperformed its rival Pravachol in lowering LDL. The "striking benefit" was a 22 percent rate of death or further adverse coronary events in the Lipitor patients compared to 26 percent in the Pravachol patients.

PROVE-IT investigators took 4162 patient who had been in the hospital following an MI or unstable angina. Half got Pravachol and half got Lipitor. Those taking Lipitor had the greatest reduction of LDL-cholesterol--LDL in the Pravachol group was 95, in the Lipitor group it was 62--a 32 percent greater reduction in LDL levels and a 16 percent reduction in all-cause mortality. But that 16 percent was a reduction in relative risk. As pointed out by Red Flags Daily columnist Dr. Malcolm Kendrick, the absolute reduction in the rate of the death rate of those taking Lipitor rather than Pravachol, was one percent, a decrease from 3.2 percent to 2.2 percent over 2 years.54 Or, to put it another way, a 0.5 percent absolute risk reduction per year--these were the figures that launched the massive campaign for cholesterol-lowering in people with no risk factors for heart disease, not even high cholesterol.

And the study was seriously flawed with what Kendrick calls "the two-variables conundrum." "It is true that those with the greatest LDL lowering were protected against death. However, . . . those who were protected not only had a greater degree of LDL lowering, they were also on a different drug! which is rather important, yet seems to have been swept aside on a wave of hype. If you really want to prove that the more you lower the LDL level, the greater the protection, then you must use the same drug. This achieves the absolutely critical requirement of any scientific experiment, which is to remove all possible uncontrolled variables. . . As this study presently stands, because they used different drugs, anyone can make the case that the benefits seen in the patients on atorvastatin [Lipitor] had nothing to do with greater LDL lowering; they were purely due to the direct drug effects of atorvastatin." Kendrick notes that the carefully constructed J-LIT study, published 2 years earlier, found no correlation whatsoever between the amount of LDL lowering and death rate. This study had ten times as many patients, lasted almost three times as long and used the same drug at the same dose in all patients. Not surprisingly, J-LIT attracted virtually no media attention.

PROVE-IT did not look at side effects but Dr. Andrew G. Bodnar, senior vice president for strategy and medical and external affairs at Bristol Meyer Squibb, makers of the losing statin, indicated that liver enzymes were elevated in 3.3 percent of the Lipitor group but only in 1.1 percent of the Pravachol group, noting that when liver enzyme levels rise, patients must be advised to stop taking the drug or reduce the dose.55 And withdrawal rates were very high: thirty-three percent of patients discontinued Pravachol and 30 percent discontinued Lipitor after two years due to adverse events or other reasons.56

REVERSAL (2004)

In a similar study, carried out at the Cleveland Clinic, patients were given either Lipitor or Pravachol. Those receiving Lipitor achieved much lower LDL-cholesterol levels and a reversal in "the progression of coronary plaque aggregation."57 Those who took Lipitor had plaque reduced by 0.4 percent over 18 months, based on intravascular ultrasound (not the more accurate tool of electron beam tomography); Dr. Eric Topol of the Cleveland Clinic claimed these decidedly unspectacular results "Herald a shake-up in the field of cardiovascular prevention.. . . the implications of this turning point--that is, of the new era of intensive statin therapy--are profound. Even today, only a fraction of the patients who should be treated with a statin are actually receiving such therapy. . . More than 200 million people worldwide meet the criteria for treatment, but fewer than 25 million take statins."58 Not surprisingly, an article in The Wall Street Journal noted "Lipitor Prescriptions Surge in Wake of Big Study."59

But as Dr. Ravnskov points out, the investigators looked at change in atheroma volume, not the change in lumen area, "a more important parameter because it determines the amount of blood that can be delivered to the myocardium. Change of atheroma volume cannot be translated to clinical events because adaptive mechansims try to maintain a normal lumen area during early atherogenesis."60

Other Uses

With such paltry evidence of benefit, statin drugs hardly merit the hyperbole heaped upon them. Yet the industry maintains a full court press, urging their use for greater and greater numbers of people, not only for cholesterol lowering but also as treatment for other diseases--cancer, multiple sclerosis, osteoporosis, stroke, macular degeneration, arthritis and even mental disorders such as memory and learning problems, Alzheimers and dementia.61 New guidelines published by the American College of Physicians call for statin use by all people with diabetes older than 55 and for younger diabetes patients who have any other risk factor for heart disease, such as high blood pressure or a history of smoking.62 David A. Drachman, professor of neurology at the University of Massachusetts Medical School calls statins "Viagra for the brain."63 Other medical writers have heralded the polypill, composed of a statin drug mixed with a blood pressure medication, aspirin and niacin, as a prevent-all that everyone can take. The industry is also seeking the right to sell statins over the counter.

Can honest assessment find any possible use for these dangerous drugs? Dr. Peter Langsjoen of Tyler, Texas, suggests that statin drugs are appropriate only as a treatment for cases of advanced Cholesterol Neurosis, created by the industry's anti-cholesterol propaganda. If you are concerned about your cholesterol, a statin drug will relieve you of your worries.

Creative Advertising

The best advertising for statin drugs is free front-page coverage following gushy press releases. But not everyone reads the paper or goes in for regular medical exams, so statin manufacturers pay big money for creative ways to create new users. For example, a new health awareness group called the Boomer Coalition supported ABC's Academy Awards telecast in March of 2004 with a 30-second spot flashing nostalgic images of celebrities lost to cardiovascular disease--actor James Coburn, baseball star Don Drysdale and comedian Redd Foxx. While the Boomer Coalition sounds like a grass roots group of health activists, it is actually a creation of Pfizer, manufacturers of Lipitor. "We're always looking for creative ways to break through what we've found to be a lack of awareness and action," says Michal Fishman, a Pfizer spokeswoman. "We're always looking for what people really think and what's going to make people take action," adding that there is a stigma about seeking treatment and many people "wrongly assume that if they are physically fit, they aren't at risk for heart disease."64 The Boomer Coalition website allows visitors to "sign up and take responsibility for your heart health," by providing a user name, age, email address and blood pressure and cholesterol level.

A television ad in Canada admonished viewers to "Ask your doctor about the Heart Protection Study from Oxford University." The ad did not urge viewers to ask their doctors about EXCEL, ALLHAT, ASCOT, MIRACL or PROSPER, studies that showed no benefit--and the potential for great harm--from taking statin drugs.

The Costs

Statin drugs are very expensive--a course of statins for a year costs between $900 and $1400. They constitute the mostly widely sold pharmaceutical drug, accounting for 6.5 percent of market share and 12.5 billion dollars in revenue for the industry. Your insurance company may pay most of that cost, but consumers always ultimately pay with higher insurance premiums. Payment for statin drugs poses a huge burden for Medicare, so much so that funds may not be available for truly lifesaving medical measures.

In the UK, according to the National Health Service, doctors wrote 31 million prescriptions for statins in 2003, up from 1 million in 1995 at a cost of 7 billion pounds--and that's just in one tiny island.65 In the US, statins currently bring in $12.5 billion annually for the pharmaceutical industry. Sales of Lipitor, the number-one-selling statin, are projected to hit $10 billion in 2005.

Even if statin drugs do provide some benefit, the cost is very high. In the WOSCOP clinical trial where healthy people with high cholesterol were treated with statins, the five-year death rate for treated subjects was reduced by a mere 0.6 percent. As Dr. Ravnskov points out,66 to achieve that slight reduction about 165 healthy people had to be treated for five years to extend one life by five years. The cost for that one life comes to $1.2 million dollars. In the most optimistic calculations, the costs to save one year of life in patients with CHD is estimated at $10,000, and much more for healthy individuals. "This may not sound unreasonable," says Dr. Ravnskov. "Isn't a human life worth $10,000 or more?"

"The implication of such reasoning is that to add as many years as possible, more than half of mankind should take statin drugs every day from an early age to the end of life. It is easy to calculate that the costs for such treatment would consume most of any government's health budget. And if money is spent to give statin treatment to all healthy people, what will remain for the care of those who really need it? Shouldn't health care be given primarily to the sick and the crippled?"

REFERENCES

1. Hoffman G. N Engl J Med 1986;314:1610-24

2. Eleanor Laise. The Lipitor Dilemma, Smart Money: The Wall Street Journal Magazine of Personal Business, November 2003.

3. Eleanor Laise. The Lipitor Dilemma, Smart Money: The Wall Street Journal Magazine of Personal Business, November 2003.

4. Beatrice A. Golomb, MD, PhD on Statin Drugs, March 7, 2002. www.coloradohealthsite.org/topics/interviews/golomb.html

5. Melissa Siig. Life After Lipitor: Is Pfizer product a quick fix or dangerous drug? Residents experience adverse reactions. Tahoe World, January 29, 2004.

6. Jamil S, Iqbal P. Heart 2004 Jan;90(1):e3.

7. Personal communication, Laura Cooper, May 1, 2003.

8. Sinzinger H, O'Grady J. Br J Clin Pharmacol. 2004 Apr;57(4):525-8.

9. Smith DJ and Olive KE. Southern Medical Journal 96(12):1265-1267, December 2003.

10. Gaist D and others. Neurology 2002 May 14;58(9):1321-2.

11. Statins and the Risk of Polyneuropathy. http://coloradohealthsite.org/CHNReports/statins_polyneuropathy.html

12. The Struggles of Older Drivers, letter by Elizabeth Scherdt. Washington Post, June 21, 2003.

13. Langsjoen PH. The clinical use of HMG Co-A reductase inhibitors (statins) and the associated depletion of the essential co-factor coenzyme Q10: a review of pertinent human and animal data. http://www.fda.gov/ohrms/dockets/dailys/02/May02/052902/02p-0244-cp00001-02-Exhibit_A-vol1.pdf

14. Eleanor Laise. The Lipitor Dilemma, Smart Money: The Wall Street Journal Magazine of Personal Business, November 2003.

15. Langsjoen PH. The clinical use of HMG Co-A reductase inhibitors (statins) and the associated depletion of the essential co-factor coenzyme Q10: a review of pertinent human and animal data. http://www.fda.gov/ohrms/dockets/dailys/02/May02/052902/02p-0244-cp00001-02-Exhibit_A-vol1.pdf

16. Clark AL and others. J Am Coll Cardiol 2003;42:1933-1943.

17. Personal communication, Jason DuPont, MD, July 7, 2003

18. Sandra G Boodman. Statins' Nerve Problems. Washington Post, September 3, 2002.

19. Eleanor Laise. The Lipitor Dilemma, Smart Money: The Wall Street Journal Magazine of Personal Business, November 2003,

20. King, DS. Pharmacotherapy 25(12):1663-7, Dec, 2003.

21. Muldoon MF and others. Am J Med 2000 May;108(7):538-46.

22. Email communication, Beatrice Golomb, July 10, 2003.

23. Duane Graveline, MD. Lipitor: Thief of Memory, 2004, http://www.buybooksontheweb.com/.

24. Lopena OF. Pharm D, Pfizer, Inc., written communication, 2002. Quoted in an email communication from Duane Graveline, spacedoc@webtv.net

25. Newman TB, Hulley SB. JAMA 1996;27:55-60

26. Sacks FM and others. N Eng J Med 1996;385;1001-1009.

27. Heart Protection Study Collaborative Group. Lancet 2002;360:7-22.

28. Leung BP and others. J Immunol. Feb 2003 170(3);1524-30; Palinski W. Nature Medicine Dec 2000 6;1311-1312.

29. J Pharm Technol 2003;19:283-286.

30. Low Cholesterol Linked to Depression. BBC Online Network, May 25,1999.

31. Uffe Ravnskov, MD, PhD. The Cholesterol Myths. NewTrends Publishing, 2000.

32. Ravnskov U. BMJ. 1992;305:15-19.

33. Jackson PR. Br J Clin Pharmacol 2001;52:439-46.

34. Schatz IJ and others. Lancet 2001 Aug 4;358:351-355.

35. Schwartz GG and others. J Am Med Assoc. 2001;285:1711-8.

36. The ALLHAT Officers and Coordinators for the ALLHAT Collaborative Research Group. JAMA 2002;288:2998-3007.

37. Heart Protection Study Collaborative Group. Lancet 2002;360:7-22.

38. Medical Research Council/British Heart Foundation Heart Protection Study.Press release. Life-saver: World's largest cholesterol-lowering trial reveals massive benefits for high-risk patients. Available at www.ctsu.ox.ac.uk/~hps/pr.shtml.

39. Kmietowicz A. BMJ 2001;323:1145

40. Ravnskov U. BMJ 2002;324:789

41. Email communication, Eddie Vos, February 13, 2004 and posted at www.health-heart.org/comments.htm#PetoCollins.

42. Shepherd J and others. Lancet 2002;360:1623-1630.

43. Matsuzaki M and others. Circ J. 2002 Dec;66(12):1087-95.

44. Hecht HS, Harmon SM. Am J Cardiol 2003; 92:670-676

45. Hecht HS and others. Am J Cardiol 2003;92:334-336

46. Jenkins AJ. BMJ 2003 Oct 18;327(7420):933.

47. Circulation, 2004 Feb 17;109(6):714-21.

48. Sever PS and others. Lancet 2003;361:1149-1158.

49. Liu Y and others. JAMA 2004;291:451-459.

50. Cannon CP and others. N Engl J Med 2004 Apr 8;350(15):1495-504. Epub 2004 Mar 08.

51. Gina Kolata. Study of Two Cholesterol Drugs Finds One Halts Heart Disease. The New York Times, November 13, 2003.

52. Extra-Low Cholesterol, The New York Times, March 10, 2003

53. Rob Stein. Striking Benefits Found in Ultra-Low Cholesterol, The Washington Post, March 9, 2004

54. Dr. Malcolm Kendrick. PROVE IT- PROVE WHAT? http://www.redflagsweekly.com/applications/ui/login.php?Next=/kendrick/2004_mar10.php&e=4

55. Health Sciences Institute e-alert, http://www.hsibaltimore.com/, March 11, 2004

56. Email communication, Joel Kauffman, April 15, 2004.

57. Nissen SE and others. JAMA 2004 Mar 3;291(9):1071-80.

58. Dr. Malcolm Kendrick. PROVE IT- PROVE WHAT? http://www.redflagsweekly.com/applications/ui/login.php?Next=/kendrick/2004_mar10.php&e=4

59. Scott Hensley. The Statin Dilemma: How Sluggish Sales Hurt Merck, Pfizer. The Wall Street Journal, July 25, 2003.

60. Ravnskov, U. Unpublished letter. ravnskov@tele2.se .

61. Cholesterol--And Beyond: Statin Drugs Have Cut Heart Disease. Now They Show Promise Against Alzheimer's, Multiple Sclerosis & Osteoporosis. Newsweek, July 14. 2003.

62. John O'Neil. Treatments: Statins and Diabetes: New Advice. New York Times, April 20, 2004.

63. Peter Jaret. Statins' Burst of Benefits. Los Angeles Times, July 2. 2003.

64. Behind the 'Boomer Coalition,' A Heart Message from Pfizer, Wall Street Journal, March 10, 2004

65. Paul J. Fallon, personal communication, March, 2004.

66. Uffe Ravnskov, MD, PhD. The Cholesterol Myths. NewTrends Publishing, 2000, pp 208-210.

Sidebar Articles


A Better Way

If statins work, they do so by reducing inflammation, not because they lower cholesterol. Statins block the production of mevalonate leading to inhibition of platelet clumping and reduction of inflammation in the artery walls. However, simple changes in the diet can achieve the same effect without also cutting off the body's vital supply of cholesterol:

  • Avoid trans fats, known to contribute to inflammation
  • Avoid refined sugars, especially fructose, known to stimulate clumping of the blood platelets
  • Take cod liver oil, an excellent dietary source of anti-inflammatory vitamin A, vitamin D and EPA
  • Eat plenty of saturated fats, which encourage the production of anti-inflammatory prostaglandins
  • Take evening primrose, borage or black currant oil, sources of GLA which the body uses to make anti-inflammatory prostaglandins
  • Eat foods high in copper, especially liver; copper deficiency is associatied with clot formation and inflammation in the arteries
  • Eat coconut oil and coconut products; coconut oil protects against bacteria and viruses that can lead to inflammation in the artery wall
  • Avoid reduced-fat milks and powdered milk products (such as powdered whey); they contain oxidized cholesterol, shown to cause irritation of the artery wall

Dietary Trials

Doctors and other health professionals claim there is ample proof that animal fats cause heart disease while they confidently advise us to adopt a lowfat diet; actually the literature contains only two studies involving humans that compared the outcome (not markers like cholesterol levels) of a diet high in animal fat with a diet based on vegetable oils, and both showed that animal fats are protective.

The Anti-Coronary Club project, launched in 1957 and published in 1966 in the Journal of the American Medical Association, compared two groups of New York businessmen, aged 40 to 59 years. One group followed the so-called "Prudent Diet" consisting of corn oil and margarine instead of butter, cold breakfast cereals instead of eggs and chicken and fish instead of beef; a control group ate eggs for breakfast and meat three times per day. The final report noted that the Prudent Dieters had average serum cholesterol of 220 mg/l, compared to 250 mg/l in the eggs-and-meat group. But there were eight deaths from heart disease among Prudent Dieter group, and none among those who ate meat three times a day

In a study published in the British Medical Journal, 1965, patients who had already had a heart attack were divided into three groups: one group got polyunsaturated corn oil, the second got monounsaturated olive oil and the third group was told to eat animal fat. After two years, the corn oil group had 30 percent lower cholesterol, but only 52 percent of them were still alive. The olive oil groups fared little better--only 57 percent were alive after two years. But of the group that ate mostly animal fat, 75 percent were still alive after two years.


What About Aspirin?

The other drug recommended for prevention of heart attacks and strokes is aspirin. Estimates suggest that 20 million persons are taking aspirin daily for prevention of vascular accidents. Yet at least four studies have shown no benefit. A study using Bufferin (aspirin and magnesium) showed no reduction in fatal heart attacks and no improvement in survival rate but a 40 percent decrease in the number of nonfatal heart attacks. Commentators reported these results as showing the benefit of aspirin, ignoring the fact that magnesium is of proven benefit in heart disease. Aspirin inhibits the enzyme Delta-6 Desaturase, needed for the production of Gamma-Linoleic Acid (GLA) and important anti-inflammatory prostaglandins. This fact explains many of aspirin's side effects, including gastrointestinal bleeding and increased risk of macular degeneration and cataract formation. Other side effects include increased risk of pancreatic cancer, acid reflux, asthma attacks, kidney damage, liver problems, ulcers, anemia, hearing loss, allergic reactions, vomiting, diarrhea, dizziness and even hallucinations (James Howenstine, NewsWithViews.com, April 21, 2004).


Late-Breaking Cholesterol News

Researchers at the Tulane University School of Medicine used electron beam tomography (EBT) to measure the progression of plaque buildup in heart-attack patients taking statin drugs. EBT is a very accurate way to measure occlusion from calcium in the arteries. Contrary to expectations, the researchers discovered that the progression of coronary artery calcium (CAC) was significantly greater in patients receiving statins compared with event-free subjects despite similar levels of LDL-lowering. Said the researchers: "Continued expansion of CAC may indicate failure of some patients to benefit from statin therapy and an increased risk of having cardiovascular events (Arterioscler Thromb Vasc Biol, April 1, 2004).

Doctors have discovered that injections of a certain substance can reverse heart disease in some patients. The therapy has helped reduce the amount of plaque in the arteries, thereby negating the need for angioplasty and open heart surgery. That substance is HDL-cholesterol (www.ivanhoe.com/newsalert, March 1, 2004).

The Melbourne Women's Midlife Health Project measured cholesterol levels annually in a group of 326 women aged 52-63 years. During the eighth annual visit, subjects took a test that assessed memory. They found that higher serum concentrations of LDL-cholesterol and relatively recent increases in total cholesterol and LDL-cholesterol were associated with better memory in healthy middle-aged women (J Neurol Neurosurg Psychiatry 2003;74:1530-1535.)


Read the Fine Print

Lipitor Advertisement

The picture in a recent ad for Lipitor implies that cholesterol-lowering is for everyone, even slim young women. However, in the fine print we learn that Lipitor "has not been shown to prevent heart disease or heart attacks"! If the makers of Lipitor need to provide this disclaimer, after millions of dollars invested in studies, why should anyone risk side effects by taking their drug?

(From the advertisement) Important information: Lipitor (atorvastatin calcium) is a prescription drug used with diet to lower cholesterol.  Lipitor is not for everyone, including those with liver disease or possible liver problems, women who are nursing, pregnant, or may become pregnant.  Lipitor has not been shown to prevent heart disease or heart attacks.

About the Author

Mary G. Enig, PhDMary G. Enig, PhD is an expert of international renown in the field of lipid biochemistry. She has headed a number of studies on the content and effects of trans fatty acids in America and Israel, and has successfully challenged government assertions that dietary animal fat causes cancer and heart disease. Recent scientific and media attention on the possible adverse health effects of trans fatty acids has brought increased attention to her work. She is a licensed nutritionist, certified by the Certification Board for Nutrition Specialists, a qualified expert witness, nutrition consultant to individuals, industry and state and federal governments, contributing editor to a number of scientific publications, Fellow of the American College of Nutrition and President of the Maryland Nutritionists Association. She is the author of over 60 technical papers and presentations, as well as a popular lecturer. Dr. Enig is currently working on the exploratory development of an adjunct therapy for AIDS using complete medium chain saturated fatty acids from whole foods. She is Vice-President of the Weston A Price Foundation and Scientific Editor of Wise Traditions as well as the author of Know Your Fats: The Complete Primer for Understanding the Nutrition of Fats, Oils, and Cholesterol, Bethesda Press, May 2000. She is the mother of three healthy children brought up on whole foods including butter, cream, eggs and meat.

Sally FallonSally Fallon is the author of Nourishing Traditions: The Cookbook that Challenges Politically Correct Nutrition and the Diet Dictocrats (with Mary G. Enig, PhD), a well-researched, thought-provoking guide to traditional foods with a startling message: Animal fats and cholesterol are not villains but vital factors in the diet, necessary for normal growth, proper function of the brain and nervous system, protection from disease and optimum energy levels. She joined forces with Enig again to write Eat Fat, Lose Fat, and has authored numerous articles on the subject of diet and health. The President of the Weston A. Price Foundation and founder of A Campaign for Real Milk, Sally is also a journalist, chef, nutrition researcher, homemaker, and community activist. Her four healthy children were raised on whole foods including butter, cream, eggs and meat.