Would you rather… (FREE STATINS edition)

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Okay. This is the most important question I will ever ask, ever.

It would have been more timely around Halloween (when this picture was taken) except for the fact that I didn’t give out free candyI was the evil witch on the block whose house gets egged and whose pumpkin gets smashed and whose scarecrow gets un-stuffed because I choose to distribute stickers instead of mouth-rotting hydrogenated-oil-containing red-5-filled candy to the many kids in my neighborhood who are clearly already in health crisis mode.

Incidentally, they were stickers from our wedding save-the-dates a few years back. Whatever.

I don't know why they'd egg us either.

I don’t know why they’d egg us either.

Anyway.

Would you rather…

Get free candy, or a free statin?

I’m having trouble deciding…

FreeStatin

What kind of incentives must be behind this atrocity…Wegman’s wouldn’t give out a free .99 cent box of Jujubes, yet they can freely distribute a prescription med that costs who-knows-whom thousands of dollars each year. Yikes.

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Comments

  1. scott says

    Why is this an atrocity? Statins have beneficial effects for some, even if you don’t buy that lipid lowering is one of them.

    • says

      I described the atrocity in the post: “Wegman’s wouldn’t give out a free .99 cent box of Jujubes, yet they can freely distribute a prescription med that costs who-knows-whom thousands of dollars each year.”

      The atrocity is in what is given for free (based on whatever incentives), when something made of ingredients that are well-understood to be cheap and health degrading (an intentional juxtaposition with statins, which are NOT “well-understood” to be health degrading) is never offered for free in the same store.

      Further…just for the record, and to nit-pick your sentence structure a bit…I know how statins work. It’s not that I don’t “buy” that “lipid lowering is one of [their effects].” That’s the intended and oft-achieved affect of statins. Statins DO lower cholesterol…but (although this isn’t what I addressed in this post – refer to my description of the atrocity) that’s not why I question them. I question whether lipid lowering by such means is necessary or advisable in the first place.

      The beneficial effects and mild anti-inflammatory action statins may have for some (ie middle-aged caucasian males who have already had a heart-related incident in the past 10 years) are hardly exclusive to statins. Absent an anti-inflammatory diet rich in Vitamins A, D and K2, those benefits wouldn’t counter-act the other negative effects of a poor diet and lifestyle anyway. They’re not an answer – at best, they’re a band-aid…and a poor one at that.

    • says

      Hi Marisa! Perhaps my reply to Scott will help clarify?

      The phrase “giving them out like candy” is what inspired this post. They’re giving statins out like candy. Which is worse? Giving out statins like candy or giving out candy like candy?

      Plus, of course, the greater and more troubling issue that I described in my reply to Scott.

  2. Lindsay says

    Love your blog, love that you handed out stickers on Halloween (I opted for cheap toys and glow sticks…which actually went over well. No pumpkin-smashing or egging at least!). This post has good timing. I have a friend who was recently put on statins, and will hopefully be joining the gym I manage. I know that the diet changes are going to be her biggest asset but she is still on the SAD diet. If you could recommend one good blog post for someone who is just starting to work on her managing her own health and cholesterol, what would it be? (Bearing in mind her husband works in healthcare and I don’t want to scare her off…) Thanks for all your humor and insight!

  3. says

    Hi Liz,
    I am loving your blog and podcasts. In two days, I have listened to 10! Please tell Dianne I too, have a hatred, yes hatred for Dr. Oz. LOL. But seriously. I can’t stand him. It fueled when I stumbled upon an episode of his show and he was demonstrating a “great” way to eat broccoli was with crumbled up cheeto’s on top. Really? REALLY?!

    A little about me, I found Paleo a year and a half ago (which helped me lose 20 pounds). I immediately LOVED it. I stayed about 98% paleo for 9 months until I got a *brilliant* idea to compete in an NPC bikini show. I didn’t want to leave paleo but my coach insisted I did. Long story short, after 8 months on grains, low fat, and dairy. I fell apart. I had adrenal fatigue, hormonal issues, acne, was extremely moody/ornery, and I had to fight every single day to make sure I didn’t gain a pound for my show. I became plagued with ill thoughts terrified to eat more fruit than a half apple a day. It is crazy how much switching my diet affected every aspect of my life for the worse. Long story short, right after the competition I switched back to Paleo and feel AMAZING. It has been three months now and I finally feel like I have my life back and I’m “me” again. My husband is constantly saying he loves how happy I am (to me, that means gold). Thank you for all you do and bringing awareness to the world.

    I have one question, I haven’t seen it answered on your pod casts. Do you have any recommendations for bad breath? I brush twice daily, never chew gum (I read it can actually strip your mouth of the good bacteria–is that true?), but I feel like I have continual halitosis. I read vitamin C or cucumbers can help but then my husband says I smell like vegetables.

    • says

      Hi Ashley! This is something I’ve been researching. If you think of it, submit the question to a future Balanced Bites podcast. By then, I may have some great answers for you. The easy answer to what causes it is liver congestion or gut dysbiosis, but there are other factors and, at this point, I’m not 100% sure how they all fit together. Some say amalgam fillings can worsen halitosis. Some swear by oil pulling. I hope to have more for you soon!

  4. @heather_kaye says

    I was recently in a state of wonderment about a similar giveaway at our local store, and a pharmacist friend explained that often, when the pharmacy has a large backstock of a certain med that is about to expire they’re given permission by the manufacturer to give it away to people who hold prescriptions instead of sending it back to the factory – apparently it reduces losses that way?

    Still – yikes.

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