VERY IMPORTANT CLARIFICATION. PLEASE READ
Since last couple of months, lots of people have asked me about a message that has gone viral about ‘Cholesterol’ The post I am talking about is in the picture below and I am sure many of you have read it. Infact, many people I know stopped taking their anti-cholesterol (Statins) medications after reading the Whataspp message !
Now I cannot do anything for people who stop medications after reading a Whatsapp message but even doctors are circulating this post without verifying the information.
Hence, I did my research to find out the TRUTH ABOUT THIS POST and found that this post is a combination of half-baked news report first published in ‘The Washington Post’ combined with some ‘masala’ some people have added while circulating the post.
Here is a clarification, so if you are really interested in your health , READ ON:
FIRST SOME TRUTH IN THE POST:
- The first part of the post was actually published in ‘The Washington post’ and though misleading it is not wrong.
- The US Department of Agriculture in their new dietary guidelines have removed Dietary cholesterol from list of harmful substances. This is a fact and it is verifiable. Now, why the said US agency has made this recommendation is difficult to say, however, let us assume it is evidence based and factually correct.
But remember, the recommendations are about DIETARY CHOLESTEROL and not the Cholesterol present in your body. Previously it was recommend to restrict intake of cholesterol in diet, however now they are saying not to restrict cholesterol in your diet. THEY ARE NOT TAKING ABOUT CHOLESTEROL IN YOUR BODY, THEY ARE TALKING ABOUT CHOLESTEROL IN YOUR DIET !!
NOW FOR SOME LIES.
Now there are a lot of ‘masala’ added by some people as the post circulated. This is mainly concentrated in the second part of the message.
- ‘Cholesterol is the biggest medical scam of all time’ – WHAT ? LIE !
- ‘There is no such thing as bad Cholesterol! ‘ – Biggest misinformation in this message.
- ‘So you can stop trying to change your Cholesterol level. Studies prove beyond a doubt, cholesterol doesn’t cause heart disease and it won’t stop a heart attack. The majority of people that have heart attacks have normal cholesterol levels’ – NO STUDY EVER HAS SAID THIS
- ‘Experts say that there is nothing like LDL or HDL’- WHO ARE THESE SO CALLED EXPERTS ?
What the message is done is to combine a half-baked knowledge about Dietary cholesterol and COMBINED IT WITH CHOLESTEROL PRESENT IN YOUR BODY !
NOW THE REAL TRUTHS
- Taken, even if the American agency quoted above is true, you probably don’t need to worry about the cholesterol in your diet, however, you still need to worry about SATURATED AND TRANS-FAT which will produce more cholesterol inside your body , all of which will clog your arteries and will kill you ! Period !
- LDL , ‘the bad cholesterol’ is produced in your body . If is actually a misnomer and it is not cholesterol it is an actually a lipoprotein which carries the ‘Bad’ cholesterol and ‘Bad fat’ in your body. If this LDL is in excess it will block your arteries and kill you … again Period !
- Don’t stop medication after reading Whatsapp messages ! If you are prescribed anti-cholesterol medications called ‘Statins’ (Atorvastain, Rosuvastatin etc), by your physician, you probably badly need it. If you stop this medication, your cholesterol will increase and It will deposit in your heart and kill you. Period again !
- There is now even more evidence that cholesterol is harmful for you based on a new clinical trial called HOPE 3. http://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJMoa1600176. Statins save lives and there is more evidence for it now than ever before.
- Finally (and true for doctors too) don’t spread rumors and misinformation without verifying the facts first.
So a final word, stop listening to Social media and listen to your doctor. You are free to email me for more information. This is my twitter handle https://twitter.com/omlakhani
Good luck and Wish you a healthy life.
Dr. Om J Lakhani, MD
(If you were one of those people who shared the previous ‘Wrong message’ , I hope you share the current ‘Correct message’ too !)