Tags: High Cholesterol | statin | drugs | illusion | protection | lifestyle | changes

Statins Less Effective Than Lifestyle Changes: Study

Friday, 23 January 2015 12:46 PM


 
Statin drugs give an "illusion of protection" from heart attacks and stroke, say top doctors in the United Kingdom, and more lives would be saved if patients made lifestyle changes, such as eating a healthy diet, exercising, and quitting smoking.

While the effectiveness of statins shouldn't be discounted, say researchers at the University of Liverpool, putting more emphasis on lifestyle changes could offer larger health gains as well as relieve pressure on healthcare systems.  

"Measures like controlling tobacco, increasing physical activity, improving the contents of processed food products, restricting marketing of junk food, taxation of sugary drinks, and subsidies to make healthier foods more affordable, require renewed attention not just from academics, but crucially from people and policymakers," researcher Martin O'Flaherty told the Telegraph.

Guidelines from the UK's National Institute for Health Care and Excellence (NICE) encouraged doctors to offer statin drugs to most men over the age of 60 and women over 65, even if their risk of developing cardiovascular disease during the next decade is as low as 1 in 10, claiming tens of thousands of lives would be saved.

But new research shows the true number is much lower than those claimed by NICE, and that preventive measures, not drugs, are the best way to lower risk by attacking the root cause of cardiovascular disease rather than using drugs to treat the results of poor lifestyle choices.  

"We need to make significant changes to the environment in which people are born, live, grow, work and age," Sir Michael Marmot, Director of the Institute of Health Equity at University College London, told the Telegraph.

"Choosing healthy lifestyles is more difficult because our society promotes cheap unhealthy foods, low alcohol prices, and car use instead of walking or cycling."

To read the entire Telegraph article, go here.

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Statin drugs give an illusion of protection from heart attacks and stroke, say top doctors in the United Kingdom, and more lives would be saved if patients made lifestyle chances, such as eating a healthy diet, exercising, and quitting smoking. While the effectiveness of...
statin, drugs, illusion, protection, lifestyle, changes
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2015-46-23
Friday, 23 January 2015 12:46 PM
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