Statin Candy Anyone?

Dear Health Conscious Reader,

As a doctor, I’m outraged. As a father… well… I’m even more outraged…

For years, doctors have been handing out statin drugs to any patient with high cholesterol. But they’re the most dangerous drugs a doctor can prescribe. They’ve been linked to fatigue, heart problems, and even death.

But here’s what’s different about the side effects of statins: They don’t just pose an outside risk of an unlikely problem. They rob every single person who takes even one pill of energy. And if you take one for long enough, you’re going to feel very tired and very old.

Now the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) is pushing this poison to a new group.

I’m talking about children. Some as young as 8 years old!

AAP guidelines have just recommended cholesterol screenings for high-risk children ages two and up. And statin therapy for kids as young as eight with LDLs over 190mg/dl.1

Now, some are calling for even more aggressive screening measures to find kids “in need” of these drugs. All to ensure that pharmaceutical companies will keep making billions for years to come.

Consider this: AAP’s Pediatrics published a new study a couple weeks ago. Researchers screened all fifth graders in West Virginia public schools, including 5,798 who wouldn’t have met cholesterol screening guidelines. They found 268 children with cholesterol high enough to be treated with drugs.2

It frightens me to even think about the implications…

Entire generations getting hooked on drugs with dangerous side effects. Ones that include:

  • Muscle pain
  • Liver damage
  • Nausea
  • Lowered mental performance
  • Chronic fatigue
  • Cardiomyopathy (deterioration of your heart’s function)
  • Depletion of CoQ10 in the heart (which can cause congestive heart failure)

What’s more, this could open up the floodgates for pharmaceutical companies to promote their use in kids. Come to think of it, that’s already happening. I just read that Pfizer introduced a sweet and tasty “gummy-like” version of Lipitor. I’m sure it’ll boost sales before their patent runs out next year.

The lesson here is, “Just say NO to statins!” You can’t trust them – or the folks telling you to take them.

If a child came to my office with high cholesterol, I would tell him to exercise in short bursts of high intensity for at least 12 minutes a day, cut carbs, and eat foods that are rich in omega-3s, like salmon, flax seeds, and walnuts.

For most children, this would solve the problem within six weeks. Why? Because children’s bodies heal themselves quickly.

And yours will, too – IF you treat it right.

Here’s what I recommend for driving down LDLs:

  • Eat fish: They’re loaded with omega-3s. And they’re just as good at reducing the risk of heart-attack deaths as statins. In fact… for some, they can be even better. In a recent study, omega-3s – not statins – cut hospitalizations and death rates of heart patients.3,4

    Wild-caught salmon is best. It doesn’t have all the pollutants found in farm-raised fish. Or you can supplement. I recommend anywhere from 700 to 2,000 mg per day.

  • Take sustained release niacin (vitamin B3): It’s been found to increase HDL cholesterol by 20% to 35%.5 But don’t exceed 500 mg a day.
  • PACE yourself: Quick, simple, high-intensity exercise – like my 10- to 20-minute PACE workouts – is the most effective way to increase your HDL levels.
  • Avoid grains and sugars: 99% of the time, this alone can help regulate cholesterol. If you need more help with this, work with a doctor who understands bio-identical hormone therapy.

To Your Good Health,

Al Sears, MD

  1. Daniels, Stephen R., M.D., Greer, Frank R., M.D. “Lipid Screening and Cardiovascular Health in Childhood.” Pediatrics 2008;122 (1):198-208.
  2. Ritchie S, et al. “Universal Versus Targeted Blood Cholesterol Screening among Youth: The CARDIAC Project.” Pediatrics 2010; 126: 260-265.
  3. GISSI-HF investigators. “Effect of n-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids in patients with chronic heart failure (the GISSI-HF trial): a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial.” Lancet 2008; DOI: 10.1016/S0140-6736(08)61241-6. Available at:
  4. GISSI-HF investigators. “Effect of rosuvastatin in patients with chronic heart failure (the GISSI-HF trial): a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial.” Lancet 2008; DOI: 10.1016/S0140-6736(08 )61241-6. Available at:
  5. Davis W. “Using Niacin to Improve Cardiovascular Health,” LE Magazine, 2007.