muscle pain

  1. Statins don’t improve physical fitness levels

    How statins undo exercise

    "No pain, no gain!" That's what they say about exercise, right?

    But cholesterol-lowering statin drugs can turn exercise for physical fitness into an exercise in futility -- because new research shows they can actually undo all your hard work and even block some of the most important benefits.

    In other words, all pain -- with no gain.

    In the study, two groups of overweight, sedentary, and unhealthy volunteers were put onto physical fitness programs. Half got statins, half did not.

    After 12 weeks, the ones who didn't take the drugs got all the expected benefits, including a 10 percent improvement in physical fitness and a 13 percent increase in the activity of an enzyme used to measure the health of muscle mitochondria -- or the part of the cells that produce energy for the muscle.

    The ones who took the statins, on the other hand, went in the opposite direction. They had virtually no gain in physical fitness, with an average improvement of less than 1 percent. Some of the volunteers even saw their aerobic fitness levels worsen.

    Imagine that -- working hard for three months, and getting worse!

    And it doesn't end there, either. Remember those all-important mitochondria? The enzyme levels actually fell by an average of 4.5 percent.

    The study has shocked some in the mainstream, but it's consistent with the rest of the research on statin drugs. We know, for example, that marathon runners on statins suffer more muscle damage during a race. We also know that lab animals given the drugs don't run as far as animals not on the drugs.

    And of course one of the most notorious side effects of statin drugs is muscle pain -- in some cases, pain so severe it can be debilitating.

    My suggestion is to make sure you get your exercise no matter what. But if you're on statins, speak to a holistic doctor about finding a way off -- because most people don't even need the drugs in the first place.

    If you want to know more about why, read my free report on cholesterol here.

  2. Feeling tired? Could be your statin

    Statins cause fatigue

    Tired, and can't figure out why?

    It might not be your diet, your age, or even your sleep habits. It could be your drugs instead.

    Fatigue is a common side effect of any number of meds, and a new study finds one class of drugs that dramatically up the odds of the condition in women.

    And they're the drugs being given out to practically everyone.

    Alarming new numbers show that fatigue can slam up to 40 percent of women who take cholesterol-lowering statin medications -- and that for 10 percent of women, their energy levels sink to such lows that they rated themselves as "much worse" after taking the drugs.

    That was the lowest possible rating they could have used in the six-month study, which compared simvastatin (aka Zocor) and pravastatin (aka Pravachol) to a placebo.

    The researchers say both drugs increased the risk of fatigue, but the effect was much more noticeable among the women who took simvastatin.

    But I don't think you need to pick one drug over the other based on how they might affect your energy levels -- because you don't need either, or any other statin for that matter.

    These widely used meds are far more dangerous than most people realize, and even patients who've taken them for years can suddenly find themselves battling side effects out of the blue.

    One recent warning from the feds confirmed that statins can cause diabetes as well as memory loss and confusion. We also know that these drugs as a class can raise the risk of severe muscle pain, kidney and liver problems, cataracts, and have even been linked to sexual dysfunction.

    There are so many side effects that even many of the doctors I know who once stood by them are now trying to get their patients off them.

    Fortunately, I've never prescribed them in the first place, because there are much safer and far more effective ways to bring your cholesterol levels down to where they need to be.

    Start with the basics, diet and exercise -- and if you succeed with those lifestyle changes, your cholesterol levels will come down to where they should be and you'll feel more energetic than you have in years.

    And for more on natural cholesterol control, subscribe to my printed newsletter, Health Revelations.

  3. Statins on the ropes

    Researchers from the Cochrane Collaboration examined 14 trials involving more than 34,000 low-risk statin patients--influential studies used to push these drugs on millions--and found serious flaws in the research.

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