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  1. #1
    Senior Member rideorglide's Avatar
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    Statins eg Lipitor --- if I start them and I stuck on them for life?

    Statins --- if I start them and I stuck on them for life? Heard all tooo many reports of muscle aches and folk who are for some reason not able to go back to a life without these things.

    Cholesterol is roughly about 249
    Good cholesterol around 48

    Doc recommended Liptor once. Have tried to reduce chol through diet and using fish oil capsules but it only went up. (I'm wondering if the fish oil helped or hindered)

    I've been prescribed Lipitor 10 mg. I really don't want to be on Lipitor or similar, and wondering if it worth another shot at changing diet even more radically, eg. eliminating meat, before taking statins. Or whether it's unwise to delay.

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    Senior Member Spokes man's Avatar
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    I've been taking 5 mg of Lipitor (half a 10mg) a day for a couple of years and have had no ill effects. And it's kicked the cholesterol levels way down. Everyone's different, however, and I know some have had troubles. My doc told me going in that if for some reason I didn't like it to just quit taking it; nothing says your stuck on it that I've heard about.

    If you have another doc, in particular a cardiologist, see he what he/she says. I read somewhere that most cardiologists take Lipitor or a statin themselves, but I can't cite the source of that.

  3. #3
    Let's do a Century jppe's Avatar
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    Was in the same situation as you. I tried diet for a year and cholestrol dropped from 250 to 230. Big deal!!!! It's genetics and I firmly believe you can do all the dieting and exercise (I ride 5000-7000 miles a year) and unfortunately you're probably not gonna get the numbers down low enough.

    I've been doing statins for 3 year with no adverse affects. I'd rather not do them but I'm just hoping that long term keeping the cholestrol down around 170 is better than any long term side effects from the statins. I have not had any adverse side affects thus far-except for these occassional cravings for pie.

  4. #4
    Proud To Be An American EXCALIBUR's Avatar
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    Lipitor is the safest and most effective statin. 10 mg is a very small dose. It will reduce cholesterol better than dieting and exercise. I have had no side effects. YMMV.
    EXCALIBUR
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  5. #5
    It's all about the Ort. TrackGuy's Avatar
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    Your body makes its own cholesterol, diet alone is not going to make much of a change. My cholesterol was ~240, I went on a sequestrant (liver wasn't happy with Lipitor). Then I lost 50# and drastically upped the ante on physical fitness ie weight training not just cardio. I'm off my meds and it's now ~180.

    As previously mentioned, everyone is different. It is possible for some people to get off their meds if they figure out the correct combo of lifestyle changes.

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    Senior Member wrafl's Avatar
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    I've been on statin(Zocor) for more than 5 years and my cholesterol is way down as a result. Doc didn't want me off so diet, excercise and statin helps bring cholesterol level down. I requested to be taken off but it may not be advisable since she didn't want me off for good.

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    Senior Member George's Avatar
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    I had a cholesterol reading of 238 and I was started on 2 tablets of 40mg each. My cholesterol now is down to 141 and I only take 1 tablet a day now and have been for about 6 months. I stopped taking them all together about 2 months ago. When my wife was getting her heart fixed, I was talking to the doctor about what I did and he said he takes it and there is nothing wrong with his cholesterol . It has a lot more benefits than just fighting cholesterol. I just take 1 now and it's doing the trick.
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    Senior Member George's Avatar
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    Oh, I forgot, I take 2- 1200mg of Omega 3 fish oil as well.
    George

  9. #9
    Happy Rider
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    Quote Originally Posted by rideorglide View Post
    Statins --- if I start them and I stuck on them for life? Heard all tooo many reports of muscle aches and folk who are for some reason not able to go back to a life without these things.

    Cholesterol is roughly about 249
    Good cholesterol around 48

    Doc recommended Liptor once. Have tried to reduce chol through diet and using fish oil capsules but it only went up. (I'm wondering if the fish oil helped or hindered)

    I've been prescribed Lipitor 10 mg. I really don't want to be on Lipitor or similar, and wondering if it worth another shot at changing diet even more radically, eg. eliminating meat, before taking statins. Or whether it's unwise to delay.
    My cholesterol went up like yours. I used red yeast rice. It's cheap and I bought it at a good health food store. They recommended taking large amounts of CoQ10 (200 mg) with the supplement. I have to take blood tests every 6 months because I have low thyroid. My Dr. wanted to know how I lowered my cholesterol in 6 mos. so much. He has high cholesterol, he checked out red yeast rice.

    BTW
    I only took the pill 6 months, and that was 2 years ago. Cholesterol is still good.

    Bottom line:
    I'm not a Dr. I take a fist full of vitamins a day and I believe there is a lot of good in natural products. The red yeast rice worked for me. Will it work for you???????? If I could answer that, I would trade crude oil futures and never be heard from again because I would buy and island w/limited communications; plenty of seafood, fruit and vegetables; and a jet port to fly in my friends.

    Good luck!!
    Bike to live, live to eat!!

  10. #10
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    Seems like I have read that statins sometimes cause a loss of cycling performance. I tend to push pretty hard when I ride. Anyone had that experience??

  11. #11
    Senior Member Garfield Cat's Avatar
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    Does that mean you are going to skip the statins because you love pushing hard in cycling?

  12. #12
    Senior Member freeranger's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stevie47 View Post
    Seems like I have read that statins sometimes cause a loss of cycling performance. I tend to push pretty hard when I ride. Anyone had that experience??
    I did. Used to live near Pa., and there were a few parks I frequently visited. One had a tough climb at the beginning, but I could make it. Started taking a statin for my cholesterol and after the first couple of weeks of starting it, noticed I wasn't making the climb. I dismissed it as just not riding enough. So I rode more, still didn't make the climb. Stopped taking the statin, and after a few weeks off of it, was making that climb again. Psychological?-don't know, but I went through a few statins before I found one which is keeping my chol. at a reasonable level, and doesn't seem to have that effect. Everyone is different, so you may need to try a few before you find what works for you. I went through 3 or so before I found one that works for me.

  13. #13
    Pat
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    My cholesterol was about 220 (total). The physician wanted me to take a statin. I wanted to give diet a try. I already exercised so much that more would not have been effective.

    My diet was not bad to begin with. I pretty much removed saturated fats from my diet and went to chicken and fish for meats with lean red meat rarely. I also take an omega 3 fat supplement (flax seed oil).

    It worked for me. My LDL went down to around 105 and my HDL at about 65.

    I am not saying that doing the same will work for anyone else. It might and then again it might not.

    I have heard from a friend that he believed taking statins decreased his cycling performance.

    But then again not taking statins might totally eliminate one's cycling performance

    Pat

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    Take the statin. Do everything else you can (diet, etc) but my guess is you're probably going to need the med, too.

    Either that, or go back & pick different parents.

  15. #15
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    taking statins

    I am on my third statin. It is important to take the recommended blood tests about 30 days after starting on one. The first 2 caused damage to my muscle tissue, the third is working like a charm. I have eaten a very good diet for over 25 years used to run marathons, they made on difference in my cholesterol.

  16. #16
    Senior Member donheff's Avatar
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    Maybe you should just try it and see if you get any side effects. I started Lipitor about 5 years ago and never noticed any side effects. A short while back I thought about quitting it to see if life style changes have had a natural impact on cholesterol obviating the need for Lipitor. Then I remembered the recent studies that show that taking larger than normal doses, driving cholesterol down even further than previously recommended, results in a greater reduction in heart disease. That made me conclude that, if I experience no side effects, taking lipitor is like taking a proven vitamin supplement - why not keep it up?
    Every man is, or hopes to be, an Idler. -- Samuel Johnson

  17. #17
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    I started Zocor 2 months ago. Down to 171 from 248 and I feel fine.

  18. #18
    Senior Member guybierhaus's Avatar
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    I believe if a doctor starts you on a statin, he/she will never take you off. I hate to be cynical about it, but it sure does appear, at least with docs I go to, there is some backroom deals going on. Zocor and Lipitor would appear to treat the same thing with the same results. Zocor by Merck, now has a generic version available, simvastatin, much cheaper. Lipitor by Pfizer is still under patent, and therefore higher costs. Merck has now combined Zocor with another drug to create a new patent protected drug: Vytorin big bucks. I was started on Zocor, then Tricor and now Vytorin. As I looked around the doc's office I see Vytorin name plastered on every wall clock, note pad, pen and mouse pad in the place. My cholesterol and triglycerides go up and down with my weight. Last blood test had total cholesterol at 113. While I'm sure the statin had something to do with it, I suspect the 25 pound lost, double up on oil pills and less stops at Wendys has also helped. Possibly the weight loss the most. I figure I'll be around long enough to do some experimenting myself. Will stop pills next spring at least 2 months prior to another blood check to see what happens. Now the wife has outstanding cholesterol readings. Total has never been above 110. Usually below 90. Her quack has her on 2 cholesterol drugs.
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  19. #19
    Senior Member RoMad's Avatar
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    The heart surgeon that wrote the South Beach diet wrote that statins are so good at what they do that most Dr's. take them. I agree with Guybierhaus about what you see in the Dr. office. Look around the next time you are at the Dr. office and you will see that almost everything they have has the name of some drug company on it. The salesman (or most likely the lovely young salesperson) gives all of that away expecting a return. Having said that I am going to ask my Dr. about statins. I know him away from the office and trust that he will give me his honest opinion.

  20. #20
    Bike Junkie roccobike's Avatar
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    I tried Provocol with disasterous side effects. Then went to Lipitor, there were no overt side effects, but no matter how much I would ride, my endurance did not improve and leg muscle build up did not occur. But my cholesterol was down to 150 from 300.
    So I recently switched to Zetia a NON-statin. Cholesterol is up to 225, but muscle build up and endurance are up too. For now, I'm staying with Zetia.
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  21. #21
    My other car is a bike TruF's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RoMad View Post
    The heart surgeon that wrote the South Beach diet wrote that statins are so good at what they do that most Dr's. take them.
    As is the South Beach diet itself. Hubby had blood work done about 7-8 months ago. Results showed that he was pre-diabetic and his cholesterol was over 300! We both went on the South Beach diet, he lost 20 lbs, and his next blood test showed that his glucose was normal and cholesterol was in the low 200's. His doctor didn't recommend statins for some reason, but I suspect that hubby would have agreed to take them if he did.

    Good luck with your decision!

  22. #22
    Senior Member swc7916's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Spokes man View Post
    I've been taking 5 mg of Lipitor (half a 10mg) a day for a couple of years and have had no ill effects. And it's kicked the cholesterol levels way down.
    Same here.

  23. #23
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    I am on Crestor, took myself off for about 9 months and my chol. count just went back up to what it was. I reckon I will be on it for the rest of my life. I don't like the idea, but what is the alternative?

  24. #24
    Senior Member BlazingPedals's Avatar
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    I was 248, doc tried several things when diet didn't work. Then he put me on Lipitor. After 3 months of that, I was taking 5 mg instead of 10, then I went 5 mg every other day. Trouble was, both my arms would go dead every night; I'd wake up and couldn't roll over. Losing all feeling made me worry I was having some severe circulation problems. Along with that, my quads would hurt for days after even a moderately easy ride. I finally told the doc I refused to take it anymore and if he didn't like it I'd go elsewhere. At that point he confided that he'd just read a report that said 100% (that's ALL) Lipitor users suffered some degree of muscle damage. That was 3 years ago, and this was the first year I felt almost up to my pre-Lipitor performance levels. I'm now on Tricor, which merely acts to blot some of the cholesterol out of my blood. So far it's keeping my numbers below 200, and that'll have to be good enough; I may want to live to be 100, but I refuse to have a 100 year old body now!

  25. #25
    SSP
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    I've had good results with generic Niacin. It's not for everybody, because some folks have trouble tolerating the "flushing" effect. But, if you start with low doses, and build up slowly, and take it religously, your body will build up a tolerance to it.

    Unlike statins, Niacin also raises HDL (the good cholesterol).

    Niacin is also incredibly cheap - I take 2500 mg per day, and it only costs about 8 cents per day (compared to $3-4 / day for statins).

    There's a book on Amazon that can help with setting up a program for using Niacin. It's called Cholesterol Control Without Diet.

    Note: like statins, niacin can impact liver function. It should only be taken under a doctor's supervision, and with regular liver function tests.
    CycliStats.com - Software for Cyclists
    WeightWare.com - Weight Management Software

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