Had a word with my doctor on my latest visit, approbably enough, to renew my quarterly prescriptions for my blood pressure issues, as there is SO much information out there telling you that this medication, that exercise, or even those holistic drugs are better than anything you already have in your army of items to reduce your, or anyone's, blood pressure, cholesterol, etc. Or even that they are worse.

One of the things I was worried about, was all the snippets of reports stating how bad – or good – statins are for a person. And there are heaps of other comments, for and against. And that there is even more information out there about this medication. Even before I had finished explaining my concerns he had printed off a report from the medical world, which I read when I got home.

Now, I tend to be skeptical about things I read in newspapers or even online, but I did manage to take a couple of things from this report. Which came from a legitimate medical source.

It seems that if you have a high cholesterol level, something such as angina, or if you have suffered some sort of heart incident, stroke or TIA, Statins are recommended as they help reduce the risk of these conditions getting lost, or delay this result . Or you have a significantly increased risk of developing atheroma-related disease. For instance if you have diabetes. Your risk is considered high when your score is 10% or more it is possible you could develop such a disease in the next 10 years.

The report stated that your doctor should organize a blood test before starting on statin medication, while at the same time he will probably check your level of cholesterol and that your liver is working properly. After starting treatment it is advised that you have another blood test at 1-3 months and again at 12 months. In order to check that your liver has not been affected my the medication. And also check to measure your cholesterol level to see how well your statins are working.

There are some side effects, such as headaches, pins & needles, tummy pain, bloating, diarrhoea, nausea, and a rash. Unfortunately it appears that taking statins can be associated with aa36% increasing risk of being diagnosed with type 2 diabetes.

Eating grapefruit, or drinking the juice, is not recommended as it can increase the level of statin in the bloodstream, but only with simvastatin atorvastatin or lovastatin.

Unfortunately, at this stage, I have reluctantly concluded that I clearly need to take them but, after talking with my doctor, know that he will not keep me taking them if I can, with good diet, regular exercise and keeping myself as stress free as possible, reduce my own incidence of heart related effects

Of course, I did not JUST take information from the report. As research is my second love after writing, I just had to get online, see what I could find from other sources.

One of them stated that, after the analysis of almost 250,000 people, it was determined that simvastatin and pravastatin were found to have fewer side effects. Unfortunately, there is strong evidence that statins can lead to weight gain and a modest increase in the risk of diabetes.

It is also advised that you tell your doctor if you have any unexpected muscle pains, tenderness, cramps or weakness.
But what they have also found is that the benefits of taking statins, greatly outweighs the risks.

So, as my continued good health is important to me I, at least, will constantly monitor my progress towards being medication free. But continue to take my statins without and until it is proven that they are injurious to my continued good health.