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191031

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The Great Statin Scam – Time to Clean up the Mess

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In October 2013, cardiologist and professor of evidence-based medicine Dr. Aseem Malhotra published an editorial in the BMJ entitled “Saturated Fat Is Not the Major Issue.” There, he contradicted popular wisdom about saturated fat consumption contributing to heart disease and claimed the medical establishment’s focus on lowering cholesterol to improve heart health had led to the overprescription of statin drugs with negative side effects. Though the scientific evidence was on his side, many in the scientific and medical communities were not. Here he describes the history and inner workings of the ongoing conflict and the lessons to be gleaned from it.

Read More The Great Statin Scam – Time to Clean up the Mess

Open Workout 20.3 Analysis

CrossFit Open Workout 20.3 contained the classic benchmark Diane, followed by heavier deadlifts and handstand walks — all within an aggressive 9-minute time cap. With the introduction of some advanced gymnastics movements in the handstand push-ups and walks, this week didn’t see the same smooth distribution of scores as previous weeks. Nevertheless, the number of athletes who were able to complete some of the handstand push-ups this year was impressive. CrossFit Beyond the Whiteboard presents the data on this and more in this week’s workout analysis.

Read MoreOpen Workout 20.3 Analysis

Comments on 191031

17 Comments

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Katina Thornton
November 3rd, 2019 at 1:31 pm
Commented on: The Great Statin Scam – Time to Clean up the Mess

Dr. Aseem Malhotra is my hero. I have listened to him in interviews and he is well spoken and genuine. He cares about his patients enough to delve into the science. That is why he has come full circle from enthusiastically prescribing statins whilest tauting their health benefits to letting the most at-risk patient know that taking a stain will only prolong the life of 1 in every 83 patients. This is hardly a benefit worth discussing. The fact that he was reprimanded in the company of Zoe Harcombe and Malcolm Kendrick only elevates his position further.

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Mary Dan Eades
November 1st, 2019 at 8:38 pm
Commented on: The Great Statin Scam – Time to Clean up the Mess

Schopenhauer said: "All truth passes through three stages. First, it is ridiculed. Second, it is violently opposed. Third, it is accepted as being self-evident." Nowhere has this been more clearly evidenced than with the lipid hypothesis of CVD and the promulgation of statins for darn near everybody in the face of very little hard evidence that they do any good for most people (outside a small benefit to men under age 65 who have had a documented cardiac event). And in the face of a lot of evidence that they have the potential to do harm to a significant number of people.


When Mike and I wrote Protein Power in 1996 (and the LifePlan in 2000) and made the case that fat was not the enemy, the world was at the first of Schopenhauer's stages. The idea was ridiculed. But it was clear to us that our patients on lower carb nutrition (even though they were eating substantial amounts of cholesterol and animal fat) were healing their ravaged metabolic machinery, lowering their TGs, raising their HDLs, usually lowering TC and LDL (though not always the latter), losing weight, resolving GERD and sleep apnea, and generally getting well. So we persisted in doing what our own lyin' eyes told us was working for our patients despite the countervailing medical wisdom.


In more recent years and up to the present, those of us who held firm to the belief that CVD wasn't about the fat, the sat fat, the dietary cholesterol, or in fact wasn't even probably related to the cholesterol level at all, have been suffering through the second phase. And the ever stronger push to recommend statins for an ever widening demographic of patients took hold. People espousing anything other than the lipid hypothesis party line and the obligation to prescribe statins (for ever lower cholesterol and LDL numbers) were roundly vilified and decried. I can say with pride that I have never written a prescription for any statin of any sort ever.


And, as the quick and vicious attack on Dr. Malhotra's BMJ editorial attests, we're not out of the second phase woods yet.


Thankfully, though, there are hopeful glimmers (and lots of favorable research) that suggest the door to the third phase may be cracking open. It can't come too soon!

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David Bourbinay
November 4th, 2019 at 5:04 am

Thanks for your response! I don’t believe my reply to the article be vicious in any way. I have 30 years in the clinical lab and have witnessed first hand that statins indeed significantly reduce Trig, LDL and total chol while improving HDL. So my question to the anti statin providers is what us plaque made of and how does it form on arterial walls. Personally, I have genetic high cholesterol. With statins I went from a total chol of 385 down to 186, having improved lipid panel results across the board. I have achieved similar results when trading for full 26 mile marathons, however the mileage was hard on my knees. My conclusion is statins aren’t for everyone, but there IS a significant population that greatly benefit from them. 😃👍

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Michael Wong
November 1st, 2019 at 12:41 am
Commented on: 191031

Are we permitted to hold a light weight during pistols? e.g. 5lb or 10lb KB

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Michael Wong
November 1st, 2019 at 12:43 am

oops. posted to wrong date

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Melissa Toth
October 31st, 2019 at 8:26 pm
Commented on: 191031

Halloween fun at CrossFit Hardcore East in Boca Raton!

https://www.facebook.com/715797202/posts/10157134347677203?sfns=mo

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Mithra Green
October 31st, 2019 at 7:13 pm
Commented on: The Great Statin Scam – Time to Clean up the Mess

Frankly, I'm surprised that anyone paying attention to the world is surprised by this. :)

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Jesse Ward
October 31st, 2019 at 5:22 pm
Commented on: 191031

Beautiful painting. 1640 and the technology at the basic farm hasn’t changed one bit, simple cart, hand tools, groups of friends getting it done. Always feels right at the end of the day.

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Jim Rix
October 31st, 2019 at 1:17 pm
Commented on: 191031

Warmup to Greg's WOD:

21-15-9

KB swings, 53#

push-ups

GHD sit-ups

hip extensions

9:53

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Greg Fairbanks
October 31st, 2019 at 7:05 am
Commented on: 191031

Workout of the day:

Eat as little candy as possible in 24 hrs. Start with moderate pace but try to reduce intake to zero as quickly as possible.

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Chris Cheney
October 31st, 2019 at 7:48 am

General fear level: 10

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Matthew Letarte
October 31st, 2019 at 11:49 am

🤣

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Nicole Deaver
October 31st, 2019 at 7:25 pm

😂 Great workout! 🎃

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David Bourbinay
October 31st, 2019 at 4:40 am
Commented on: The Great Statin Scam – Time to Clean up the Mess

Stations reduce LDL and Triglycerides as well as reducing arterial inflammation. Statins also increase HDL. The major source of arterial sclerosis is plaque buildup. Plaques is formed from calcium, some types of fat, and yes, cholesterol. Medical providers do need to prescribe based on family genetics/history and patient labs. Providers, in my opinion, should not prescribe by casting a wide net or based on diet habits. In many cases, LDL can be reduced through endurance exercise such as cycling or running several miles 3-5 times a week. To say that statins are “bad” or not useful based on the data provided in this article is skewed at best and appears to be driven by a big pharma is bad narrative. Most CrossFit athletes are trusting in the validity and objectivity of your scientific reporting, which in this case is only half of the story.

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jr Wild
October 31st, 2019 at 8:41 am

You seem to believe that "less is better" when it comes to LDL. Can't blame you, so do think european cardiologists ESC EAS. They also think that omega-6 PUFAs are good for you (since they lower cholesterol short term). Dave at Cholesterolcode has a trick before taking the lipid panel test; he gorges on saturated fat for three days. Seems like the liver looks back for 3 days and diminishes VLDL dispatch of triglycerides accordingly. Doctor is happy, because the NUMBER he likes to treat is good. Get familiarized to Framingham, seems like LDL has a u-shaped curve in harms way, as do so many indicators in biochemistry (blood glucose e.g.).


Wanna improve Triglycerides? They seem to be a proxy for carb intake. HDL? A proxy for saturated fat intake. Inflammation = healing, chronic healingis bad, though, try finding info on insulin effects on it (chronic levels also). Why take medicin in order to improve these values?


Malhotra and another signing doctor Kendrick, are disturbed while there is none evidence to prove this causality of cholesterol - > CVD. When treating this condition (high number/statin deficiency) massively nationwide, wouldn't you expect harder evidence? The absolute benefit for patients can be calculated within 2% (absolute) units, spinned into 30-40% (relative) units. Can't blame big pharma, this is a business dream come true; medicate 50% for the rest of life, based on "treating a number", with no meaningful benefit. The borderline value has been creeping down, opening up for 10's of millions more (healthy?) to be medicalised. Set up targets in "usual care", and disciplined doctors follow them.


This Collins guy, sitting on secret data on old statin trials, has double standards. He is noiciest advocate for "more statins to everyone, lower the borderline values" and "no side effects 2/10000" with the Trump pathos of "no collusion". His patented product is sold with 29% muscle pain probability claim -this is but only one of the side effects! Follow the money for a while: his institute receives money from the Big Pharma (for keeping the data and analyzing it) and the Patent royalties.


Within this mess, Malhotra et all is calling for INDEPENDENT investigation for this wide statinating practice. No Collins no Pharma, fresh scientists are needed. Looking forward to the results, like to see if my "bias" is being reinforced. Doubt that I need to adjust it.

JR

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Michael Brooks
October 31st, 2019 at 4:36 am
Commented on: The Great Statin Scam – Time to Clean up the Mess

This article just shows how confusing it is for any lay person to make an informed decision about any medication let alone statins!

Does cholesterol really matter in predicting cardiovascular disease? If an individual has Familial hypercholesterolemia should they be worried or is it just their natural state, especially if their HDL levels are high? If my doctor recommends statins is he/she using the best research? Most of them use commercial databases to provide information, which is probably funded by medical companies. CoQ10 has been shown to be most beneficial when used in conjunction with statins but the evidence is still limited. Fish oil and high fibre diets have shown some good results, but now this evidence is also being questioned.

Seems like you're better doing nothing than anything - apart from eating a no/low processed food diet and getting regular exercise.

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Michelle Cozza
October 31st, 2019 at 1:08 am
Commented on: The Great Statin Scam – Time to Clean up the Mess

I couldn’t agree more with this article. If you’re on a statin because you’ve had a heart attack or stroke the doctors should tell you to take the active form of CoQ10.

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