February 12, 2010
President Clinton and Heart Disease
With Presidents Day just a few days away, former President Bill Clinton is not celebrating. Unfortunately, he is having heart issues again. About six years after having quadruple bypass surgery, he went back to the operating room. This time he avoided open heart surgery, but did have 2 cardiac stents placed to open a blocked artery. I wish him well and a speedy recovery. But I also hope he does not listen to the advice I heard from the media pundits and television docs. These TV docs have decided to blame the former president's high cholesterol levels as the cause of his recent heart trouble. Furthermore they advise that he go on cholesterol reducing medications to lower his risk of further problems.
But before we condemn cholesterol, perhaps we should first understand the role of cholesterol in our bodies. Cholesterol performs many important functions in the body including:
*forming and maintaining cell walls and structures
*helping cells adjust to changes in temperature, as well as being used by nerve cells for insulation.
*Cholesterol is also essential for synthesizing a number of critical hormones, including testosterone, progesterone and estrogen.
*Bile, a fluid produced by the liver from cholesterol, aids in the processing and digestion of fats.
*My favorite vitamin, Vitamin D, is made from cholesterol and sunlight.
It sometimes makes me want to bang my head against a wall that the majority of doctors still believe that the lowering of cholesterol, by pharmaceutical means, is helpful.
I'll tell you. While cholesterol is present in cardiac blockages, so are other inflammatory substances. A very important, but not well known fact is that heart disease is influenced by many factors other than cholesterol including:
*low serum antioxidant levels
*elevated levels of inflammatory substances
*among many other more technical factors.
But we do not always hear much about these!! All we ever hear about is cholesterol is bad, cholesterol is bad!! Too many people in the healthcare field have been brainwashed by Big Pharma and their demonization of cholesterol.
Now let's get back to former President Clinton. After going through bypass surgery, don't you think his cardiologist already placed him on cholesterol lowering medications, as that was and still is the standard of care?
It worked real well for him, didn't it??
The standard of care needs some fixing!! Lowering cholesterol by pharmaceutical means may make lab reports look pretty, but it does not prevent heart disease. To get my point across, I'll use a high school SAT tactic.
Elevated cholesterol on a lab report is to seeing a blizzard on radar
the use of cholesterol medication to lower cholesterol is to turning off the radar.
The blizzard or snow storm is still approaching, but with the radar turned off, we just no longer see the warning sign. So when we use cholesterol lowering medications, we no longer see a risk factor as most medications are potent enough to "normalize" our levels,
So why do we even check cholesterol levels?
Cholesterol levels are important and should be used, but as a marker for heart disease, as opposed to a cause of heart disease.
If cholesterol levels are at an unhealthy level, we should try to lower them, but by dietary and lifestyle changes, not with medication. At the Institute For Medical Wellness, we have been successful in teaching and promoting these dietary changes, and have seen many lab results improve dramatically. I will be sharing some of these results with you in a future newsletter. If you wish to get started on lowering your risk of heart disease, without the use of medications, please consider our Healthy Weight program, which provides in depth analysis of your diet patterns, to help lower your future risk of disease.
Many of you reading this newsletter may believe I am skeptical about cholesterol causing heart disease. You are probably correct. But I am not alone. Please consider the following link, The International Network of Cholesterol Skeptics, composed of a society of cholesterol skeptics who have been around a lot longer than I.
Wellness Network Update:
Just a reminder. Everyone enrolled in a Wellness Program can receive one therapeutic massage at half price. That is $35 for a one hour massage, and $50 for an hour and a half.
Institute For Medical Wellness New Offers:
Our supplement of the month for February 2010 is Revitalize. Revitalize is our once daily multivitamin that contains an abundance of vitamins and minerals, along with small amounts of antioxidant, and liver detoxifying herbs. Revitalize comes in a bottle of 90 capsules, with most people taking 1-3 a day. I find that one a day is sufficient for most, and also allows the bottle to last for 3 months. Through the end of this month, Revitalize will be available for $5 off its regular price. For more information on Revitalize and the other supplements we offer, please visit here.
To Good Health!
Steven Horvitz, D.O,
Board Certified Family Practice
Founder of The Institute For Medical Wellness
128 Borton Landing Road, Suite Two
Moorestown, NJ 08057