Statins are a group of powerful drugs that block a specific enzyme in the liver that helps make cholesterol. When that enzyme is blocked, cholesterol levels are lowered. That enzyme, however, does much more in the body than just make cholesterol, so when it is suppressed by statins there are far- ranging consequences.One major side effect that medicine acknowledges is elevated liver enzymes and disrupted liver function. If you take statins, you must have regular blood tests to look for liver damage. Stopping statins if your liver is damaged usually reverses the problem
Another acknowledged side effect, statin myopathy, is an iatrogenic (doctor-induced) condition that damages muscles and is entirely related to statin intake. Up to 20 percent of statin users can suffer muscle pain, tenderness, and weakness. But drug companies only report a 0.1 percent incidence of a type of muscle damage, called rhabdomyolysis, that is caused by statins, and therefore they can say muscle symptoms are rare. They ignore the one in five people who suffer their way through statin therapy, usually receiving other medications so that they can tolerate the statins’ side effects.
A well-known magnesium expert, Mildred Seelig, M.D., wrote a fascinating paper with Andrea Rosanoff, Ph.D., showing that magnesium acts by the same mechanisms as statin drugs to lower cholesterol.
Every metabolic activity in the body depends on enzymes. Making cholesterol, for example, requires a specific enzyme called HMG-CoA reductase. As it turns out, magnesium slows down this enzymatic reaction when cholesterol is present in sufficient quantities and speeds it up when we need more. HMG-CoA reductase is the same enzyme that statin drugs target and inhibit. The mechanisms are nearly the same; however, magnesium is the natural way that the body has evolved to control and balance cholesterol, whereas statin drugs are used to destroy the whole process.
If sufficient magnesium is present in the body, cholesterol will be limited to its necessary functions—the production of hormones and the maintenance of membranes—and will not be produced in excess. Remember, most of the cholesterol in the body is produced in the liver, so if it’s not needed, the body won’t produce it—but this mechanism depends on having sufficient magnesium.
It’s only in our present-day circumstances of magnesium- deficient soil, little magnesium in processed foods, and excessive intake of calcium and calcium-rich foods without supplementation of magnesium that cholesterol has become elevated in the population. If there is not enough magnesium to limit the activity of the cholesterol-converting enzyme, we are bound to make more cholesterol than is needed.
In their book The Magnesium Factor, Seelig and Rosanoff reported that eighteen human studies verified that magnesium supplements can have an extremely beneficial effect on lipids ultimately improving the overall function of the cardiovascular system.
Tonight on our internet based radio show, we’ll talk with Dr. Carolyn Dean about How Magnesium Acts as a Natural Statin along with a wide range of health topics and safe solutions. You will love hearing the beneficial interactions with our callers and hosts alike including the body/mind connection, identifying the ‘conflict’ in the ‘conflict basis’ of disease and much more!!
Set a reminder for today, 7pm Eastern, 4pm Pacific and join us for another wonderful, information-packed broadcast. If you yourself are unable to make the show, you have the option to email Dr. Dean and have your question or comment included in our MailBag Segment that is featured in Hour Two. Remember, the valuable information, suggestions, and insights about your health choices can always be discussed with your doctor, should you choose to do so.