By: Joe Graedon November 16, 2017 12 Comments
    Does Lowering Blood Pressure to 120/80 Save Live…

    New guidelines from the American Heart Association (AHA) and the American College of Cardiology (ACC) state that all adults should get their systolic blood pressure to 130 or lower and their diastolic…

    By: Terry Graedon November 13, 2017 3 Comments
    How Do Statins Compare to Red Yeast Rice?

    Cholesterol is not the only risk factor that is important for heart health, but it remains an important indicator. People with heart disease need to take care not to let their dangerous LDL cholestero…

    By: Terry Graedon September 21, 2017 24 Comments
    How Good Is the Evidence for Whole Grains?

    Whole grains have a golden reputation as the mainstay of a healthy diet. The old food pyramid was built on a foundation of whole grains. But how good is the evidence that eating brown rice, steel cut …

    By: Joe Graedon August 31, 2017 9 Comments
    Preventing Heart Attacks With a Unique Anti-Infl…

    A new study shows that inflammation may be as important as high cholesterol when it comes to preventing heart attacks (New England Journal of Medicine, Aug. 27, 2017). Researchers have known for years…

    By: Terry Graedon August 24, 2017 9 Comments
    Are New Cholesterol Drugs Way Too Pricey?

    Are the new cholesterol-lowering drugs such as alirocumab (Praluent) and evolocumab (Repatha) marvelous breakthroughs for treating heart disease? Or are they irrelevant because most patients who might…

    By: Terry Graedon August 14, 2017 10 Comments
    Can You Lower Your Cholesterol with Bergamot?

    How do you control your cholesterol? Many people take a statin medication such as atorvastatin  or simvastatin to keep their blood fats within normal range. On the other hand, you might prefer a more…

    By: Terry Graedon August 7, 2017 19 Comments
    Quitting Sugar Made a Big Impact on Blood Pressu…

    Once people learn about common side effects of medications to treat elevated cholesterol or high blood pressure, they are often curious about non-drug approaches to heart health. The doctor may recomm…

    By: Terry Graedon July 31, 2017 8 Comments
    Is Red Yeast Rice Safe with a Statin?

    One of the most divisive topics in health care right now is whether it makes sense to take a statin if you don't have heart disease. Some physicians are adamant that this is essential, especially for …

    By: Joe Graedon July 31, 2017 10 Comments
    How Can You Tell If You Need a Statin?

    Dr. Steve Nissen is Chairman of the Department of Cardiovascular Medicine at the Cleveland Clinic. He maintains that "56 million Americans are considered eligible for statin therapy, with about half a…

    By: Terry Graedon July 6, 2017 24 Comments
    Show 1085: The Statin Standoff and New Drugs for…

    Cardiologists agree that we should all be getting regular exercise and eating a healthful diet with lots of vegetables and fruits. But they don't agree on which of us should be taking statins to prote…

    By: Joe Graedon June 26, 2017 23 Comments
    How Does Red Yeast Rice Compare to Statins?

    Tens of millions of people take statin-type cholesterol-lowering drugs. Physicians believe such drugs are dramatically effective against heart disease. We will not deal with that controversial topic i…

    By: Terry Graedon June 19, 2017 3 Comments
    What Is the Risk of Red Yeast Rice?

    One of the pillars of heart disease prevention is keeping blood fats, especially cholesterol, under control. But doctors don't always agree on the best way to achieve this goal. Most recommend a healt…

    By: Terry Graedon June 12, 2017 18 Comments
    Is Lowering Cholesterol with Saturated Fats a Pa…

    If you have been paying attention, you are no doubt aware that saturated fats like butter or coconut oil are a dietary no-no. The theory is that these fats, which are solid at room temperature, can cl…

    By: Terry Graedon June 5, 2017 14 Comments
    Does a Nonagenarian Need to Worry About Choleste…

    Doctors interested in preventive medicine often quote Benjamin Franklin approvingly. However, he wasn't thinking of medicine when he noted that an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. (Actual…

    By: Joe Graedon May 25, 2017 24 Comments
    New Analysis Disputes Dogma that All Seniors Nee…

    The American Heart Association (AHA) and the American College of Cardiology (ACC) created a risk calculator that tells physicians and patients when someone should take a statin-type cholesterol-loweri…

    By: Terry Graedon April 24, 2017 15 Comments
    How to Ease Statin-Induced Muscle Pain

    Statin-type cholesterol-lowering drugs are an important part of every cardiologist's tool box. They lower cholesterol, which is a significant risk factor for heart disease. People who already have hea…

    By: Joe Graedon March 30, 2017 4 Comments
    Lovaza for High Triglycerides Eased Joint Pain

    What do you call a side effect that is beneficial? One reader took the prescription drug Lovaza for high triglycerides and made a very welcome discovery about joint pain. Doctors never prescribe Lovaz…

    By: Joe Graedon March 27, 2017 8 Comments
    Does the New Cholesterol Drug Repatha Save Lives…

    The results are finally in on an eagerly anticipated trial of a new cholesterol-lowering medicine. Many cardiologists are happy with the results, calling the drug a breakthrough. But others are disapp…

    By: Terry Graedon February 20, 2017 69 Comments
    Has Your Doctor Fired You?

    The relationship between a patient and her doctor is special. Patients tell their doctors things they wouldn't tell anyone else. Doctors are expected to hold these revelations in confidence and to tre…

    By: Terry Graedon October 31, 2016 48 Comments
    What Are the Benefits of Cinnamon and Honey?

    Some of the most interesting discoveries are due to serendipity. That applies not only to scientists working in a lab whose lucky accident opens a new line of research. (Imagine Alexander Fleming and…

    By: Terry Graedon October 13, 2016 4 Comments
    How to Lower Your Cholesterol with Oat Fiber

    Scientists have known for years that consuming oats can lower your cholesterol. In fact, the first study showing that oat bread instead of white bread reduced LDL cholesterol was published in 1963. Ne…

    By: Terry Graedon October 10, 2016 1 Comments
    Listen to Dr. DuBroff Discuss the Cholesterol Hy…

    We spoke with cardiologist and lipidologist Robert DuBroff, MD, a few months ago about his take on the cholesterol hypothesis. Since that time, he has retired from his position as associate professor…

    By: Terry Graedon October 6, 2016 3 Comments
    Will Eating Cheese Boost Your Cholesterol?

    Cheese is a delicious dairy product that is rich in saturated fat. As a result, the dietary guidelines recommend limiting cheese consumption to prevent raising cholesterol. Cheese and Your Heart: Dani…

    By: Terry Graedon October 3, 2016 9 Comments
    How to Improve Cholesterol and Triglycerides wit…

    After several decades of striving to avoid fat in general, Americans have finally gotten the memo: some fat is good for us! Researchers consider omega-3 fatty acids from marine sources especially be…

    By: Joe Graedon July 11, 2016 33 Comments
    What Are the Most Common Statin Side Effects?

    Many health professionals are convinced that statin-type cholesterol-lowering drugs do not cause any side effects. These physicians published a review that stated that very idea (European Journal of …

    By: Terry Graedon July 4, 2016 11 Comments
    Is Coconut Oil Good for Your Health?

    We don't know why nutrition controversies seem to be especially emotional. Battles over butter, eggs and salt have raged on for years. Other fats may also trigger heated arguments. Is coconut oil go…

    By: Joe Graedon June 30, 2016 17 Comments
    Is Butter Better? Why Butter is Back with a Bull…

    For decades and decades we were told that we had to avoid saturated fat. Cream in our coffee, butter on our bread and cream cheese on our bagel were considered sinful because such foods were supposed …

    By: Joe Graedon June 27, 2016 34 Comments
    Is Bad LDL Cholesterol Good for Older People?

    For decades we have been told that so-called bad LDL cholesterol will clog our arteries and cause heart attacks and premature death. That is why statin-type cholesterol-lowering drugs have been prescr…

    By: Joe Graedon June 23, 2016 34 Comments
    Will A Free Lunch Influence Your Doctor’s …

    Ask most physicians whether a free lunch from a drug company would affect their prescribing patterns and the chances are pretty good that they would say no. Some would be highly insulted by the very i…

    By: Joe Graedon June 20, 2016 14 Comments
    Why Should You Order Your Own Blood Tests?

    Do you know what your vitamin levels are? What about Vitamin B12 in particular? How about thyroid status? Why not order your own blood tests so you can have data on TSH (thyroid stimulating hormone), …

    By: Terry Graedon June 20, 2016 4 Comments
    How to Fight Niacin Flush with Apple Pectin

    New research suggests that cholesterol may not be the single most important factor leading to heart disease. Nonetheless, it is still relevant in many situations, and doctors will still focus on impro…

    By: Joe Graedon June 16, 2016 39 Comments
    Will Higher Bad LDL Cholesterol Help Older Peopl…

    A new analysis of prior research suggests that higher levels of so-called bad LDL cholesterol is associated with longer life for older people. Not surprisingly, many cardiologists are outraged over th…

    By: Joe Graedon June 6, 2016 7 Comments
    Should the “Salt Is Safe” Heretics B…

    Modern medicine likes to think of itself as scientific, driven by data. But when new evidence disputes old dogma public health leaders might wish for the old days when dissenters were dealt with harsh…

    By: Terry Graedon May 14, 2016 5 Comments
    How to Make Your Blood Fats Healthier

    Although the single measurement of total cholesterol has been overemphasized as a risk factor for heart disease, the fats that circulate in our blood vessels do have an impact on our heart health. But…

    By: Joe Graedon April 25, 2016 19 Comments
    Should You Shun Saturated Fat to Prevent A Heart…

    Do you worry about your cholesterol levels? Have you followed the nutrition advice of the American Heart Association to ban butter, embrace margarine, avoid eggs and use vegetable oil as your cooking …

    By: Terry Graedon April 25, 2016 8 Comments
    How to Improve Your Cholesterol with Cocoa

    One of our favorite topics is the activity of cocoa flavanols and how they can benefit our health. One reader reported on a personal experiment using cocoa flavanols. Will they improve your cholestero…

    By: Joe Graedon April 4, 2016 26 Comments
    How Bad is Bad Cholesterol for Your Heart?

    Is cholesterol the chief culprit behind heart disease? For decades Americans have been told that to lower their risk of a heart attack they had to lower their cholesterol levels, especially LDL choles…

    By: Terry Graedon March 21, 2016 11 Comments
    How to Improve Cholesterol by Skipping Dairy

    Many people worry that if their cholesterol gets too high, their doctors will insist that they need a statin to lower it. As a result, they search for alternative ways to lower cholesterol. One reader…

    By: Joe Graedon December 21, 2015 14 Comments
    Billion Dollar Drugs Are Dramatically Disappoint…

    How effective is your medicine? This seemingly simple question is surprisingly complex. In many cases a pill's benefits are barely detectable. Before a drug can be approved by the Food and Drug Admini…

    By: Joe Graedon October 19, 2015 7 Comments
    Another Downside of Statins

    When statin drugs were originally introduced in the late 1980s, most doctors thought they had few if any side effects. To this day, some researchers contend that the vast majority of problems that peo…