New aspirin risks exposed

For years, aspirin was the "wonder drug" that could ease pain, prevent heart attacks and keep flowers fresh with little to no risk.

Now, the more we learn about the drug, the more clear it becomes that we should save it for those flowers -- because those risks aren't so little after all. They're very real and very dangerous, and a new study confirms the drug can actually hurt as many people as it helps.

Italian researchers compared data on roughly 186,000 non-diabetics over the age of 30 who were taking daily low-dose aspirin to 186,000 non-diabetics who didn't get the drug.

Over six years, there were close to 7,000 hospitalizations due to bleeding -- including nearly 4,500 cases of stomach bleeding and nearly 2,500 brain hemorrhages.

And as you can probably guess, those who took aspirin were far more likely to be among them. The study in the Journal of the American Medical Association found that patients given "aspirin therapy" had a 55 percent higher risk of stomach bleeds and 54 percent higher risk of brain bleeds than those who weren't taking the drug.

Overall, the researchers say the drug caused two serious bleeding problems for every 1,000 patients and prevented two heart events for every 1,000 patients.

That's a pretty miserable track record if you ask me.

A drug should help more people than it hurts. The benefit should be real and clear, while the risks should be low to nonexistent. Aspirin, on the other hand, has minimal to nonexistent benefits -- especially when given to healthy people -- and some very real risks.

Along with that bleeding risk, aspirin has been linked to hearing loss, vision problems, allergic reactions and even erectile dysfunction.

Stick to healthy nutrients with proven benefits instead. Fish oil, for example, is a natural anti-inflammatory and an effective blood thinner. Magnesium is not only needed to help keep the heart beating, but one recent study found it can cut your risk of death by heart disease in half.

Another nutrient I often recommend for heart protection is coenzyme Q10, and a recent study found that this supplement combined with the trace mineral selenium can also cut your risk of dying of heart problems in half.

I'll have much more on the risks of aspirin and how to thin your blood naturally in an upcoming issue of my printed newsletter, Health Revelations. Sign up now and you'll not only be among the first to get it, but you'll also receive access to all my back issues online.