The Side Effect of Statin Drugs That No One Is Talking About
While the psychological side effects of drugs are often overlooked, they can present serious problems. Such is the case with statins, which pose a danger to those who take them as well as to the public at large.
New research links them to aggression in women, a finding that adds to the data indicating they can have a negative influence on the mind, even causing suicidal impulses and homicidal behavior.
A study at the University of California on 1,000 people found the association between statins and aggression was particularly strong in postmenopausal women over the age of 45. Surprisingly, the women most likely to experience this effect were those who were normally calm.
Only three of the men involved in the study showed a large increase in aggression. Most of the men experienced a reduction in aggression, which was likely due to the testosterone-lowering action of the drugs.
“The data reprise the finding that statins don’t affect all people equally — effects differ in men versus women, and younger versus older,” author Dr. Beatrice A. Golomb said in a statement. “Female sex and older age have predicted less favorable effects of statins on a number of other outcomes as well, including survival.” The research was published in the journal PLOS ONE.
Why Might Statins Cause Aggression?
Scientists don’t understand the connection, but some researchers have developed a theory that the low levels of cholesterol produced by statins are inadequate to support optimal brain functioning. Lending credence to this theory are studies that reveal violent prisoners are more prone to have low brain cholesterol. Brain cell communication is dependent upon cholesterol, so low levels might influence behavior. In addition, Golomb notes that statins interfere with sleep, an effect that could cause irritability.
The Chilling Link Between Statins and Violence
In her past writings, Golomb suggests a very small percentage of statin users may have a higher likelihood of homicidal behavior or death from suicides or accidents. Rather than attributing the risk to side effects of statins, she believes it is due to their cholesterol-lowering action, which can produce mental problems in some patients. She bases her conclusions on an examination of 32 studies conducted by other scientists that showed violent deaths were more common in people with low cholesterol. Golomb explains that low cholesterol levels lead to a reduction in brain serotonin levels, a problem linked to violence.
Another expert concerned about the hazards of statins is David Healy, professor of psychiatry at U.K.’s Bangor University: reports Daily Mail. As cofounder of rxisk.com, a website that educates the public about the dangers of popular drugs, he has studied the FDA database of psychological effects of statins. According to Healy, Lipitor users and their doctors have sent in 310 reports of aggression and violence as well as 62 reports of homicidal behavior. The database also shows 133 reports of violent aggression associated with the use of the statin Crestor, he adds.
Cholesterol Is Not Evil
One of the greatest myths of modern medicine is that cholesterol is evil. The truth is that cholesterol is produced by the body, and it plays an important role in an array of functions, including digestion, the formation of cells and the manufacture of hormones. This substance is so essential that even a small reduction in it could disrupt body chemistry and lead to suicide, notes the Denver Naturopathic Clinic.
Noted natural health proponent Dr. Joseph Mercola says the underlying cause of heart disease is inflammation rather than cholesterol. Therefore, he believes conventional medicine has “missed the boat entirely” and calls the prescription of cholesterol-lowering drugs “insanity.” Mercola advocates reducing inflammation and optimizing cholesterol levels by adopting healthful lifestyle practices.
Mary West is a natural health enthusiast, as she believes this area can profoundly enhance wellness. She is the creator of a natural healing website where she focuses on solutions to health problems that work without side effects. You can visit her site and learn more at http://www.alternativemedicinetruth.com. Ms. West is also the author of Fight Cancer Through Powerful Natural Strategies.