Despite a lack of conclusive evidence, many remain convinced that cholesterol levels function as a health marker in general, or provide us with a window through which to view heart health. Many also believe that saturated fat causes disease, and one mechanism is by elevating cholesterol levels. Concerning these perceptions, a recent review of saturated fats, taken from the Framingham heart study, showed that 80% of individuals who developed coronary artery disease had the same total cholesterol level as those who did not, and that saturated fat is not likely to have a significant impact.
Cholesterol phobia is a problem, especially when we do not understand all the details about cholesterol metabolism. For example, in an article written in the journal of Medicine in 2003 by Ravnskov, there is evidence suggesting that high cholesterol may protect against infections and atherosclerosis.
The above is not to suggest that excessive saturated fat consumption and hypercholesterolemia is not a problem; on the contrary, it seems particularly problematic for those with familial hyperlipoproteinemias (any of various disorders of lipoprotein and cholesterol metabolism that result in high levels of lipoprotein and cholesterol in the circulating blood)
It is also now known that the consumption of trans fats promotes inflammation. Trans fats, or partially hydrogenated oils are found in nearly all margarines, deep fried foods, and highly processed foods, and these foods are consumed at an alarming level. According to Author Enig, from the book, Know your fats, he explains that trans fats can raise total cholesterol levels by some 30 percent, and also raise LDL cholesterol in a dose-responsive manner.
Clinical experience suggests that when patients switch to an anti-inflammatory diet and take the “base 4” supplements (a good multiple, magnesium, EPA/DHA (omega 3), and coenzyme Q10)dramatic health changes can occur. For those who have chronic pain by adding a bromelain or proteolytic enzyme and garlic supplement ( to the base 4) your energy levels will improve, aches and pains are reduced, and aberrant cholesterol levels normalize in many people.
Some patients are taking medications for their cholesterol problem. Such medications are usually classified as Statin Drugs. However, many patients are complaining of muscle aches and pains, stiff joints and headaches that did not exist prior to taking the statin drugs. When statins cause pain, it is likely due to the inhibition of Co enzyme Q10 (CoQ10) synthesis. CoQ10 is an important antioxidant required for ATP (remember your High School Bio class) synthesis; clearly its inhibition should be avoided. Some of the newer statin drugs have included CoQ10 in there ingredients to counter act this problem.
For those who are in need of additional cholesterol lowering support or who need to get off statin medication due to the above health concerns, Policosanol maybe your answer. Policosanol is a natural alternative to statin drugs and it is not known to create dangerous side effects. Policosanol is known to lower the dangerous LDL-Cholesterol molecule while raising HDL levels. A study performed by J Clinical Pharmacol in 1999 showed that policosanol significantly elevated the anti-inflammatory HDL and lowered LDL cholesterol oxidation. The study also indicated that 20 mg of policosanol per day for 7 day was as effective as aspirin in reducing platelet aggregation. Policosanol is a very safe supplement to use for extended periods of time. In a recent year-long study, older patients with hypercholesterolemia and hypertension were supplemented with policosanol and placebo. Side effects were greater in subjects taking the placebo (17.7%) versus policosanol (9.8%); and policosanol subjects had a reduction in LDL cholesterol and total cholesterol, and an increase in HDL cholesterol.
Pain and cholesterol reduction should be a natural outcome of pursuing a healthier lifestyle. Consuming an anti-inflammatory diet, exercising, and supplementing with the “base 4”, garlic, proteolytic enzymes and policosanol you could be on the road to improve your health, lifestyle, energy and normalize your cholesterol.
The following was taken in part from an article written by Dr. David Seaman, April 2005
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