Article Image

IPFS News Link • Science, Medicine and Technology

Cholesterol is a Good Guy

• Dr. Tenpenny's Eye on the Evidence - Substack

For at least 30 years, we've been conditioned to believe that cholesterol is the 'bad guy' in our body and horrible for our health. Almost every health article and book you read screams about lowering your cholesterol level, like it's pure poison. Diets, drugs, and entire lifestyles are designed to lower or nearly eliminate cholesterol from our blood and our tissues. I actually remember hearing a cardiologist proclaim years ago that he hoped the latest/greatest statin would lower his cholesterol levels to nearly zero. What an idiot. Did he learn nothing in medical school about the necessity of cholesterol for a healthy body?   

Statins, the class of cholesterol-lowering drugs, have become some of the most prescribed drugs in America. As of 2017, more than 32 million people in the United States (10% of Americans) are currently on a statin with an estimated 56 million people (24% of Americans) eligible to consider a statin. A more recent report (2018) states that nearly 30% of adults 40 years and older in the US are on a statin. The widespread use of statins heightens the importance of careful consideration of their effects on the body. This is a short overview; entire books are written on the subject. But hopefully, you'll see here there is another side to the story and be willing to consider doing something for your body.

Cholesterol in your cells

Every cell membrane in our body contains cholesterol. One of its primary functions is to maintain the integrity and fluidity of cell membranes. Since cholesterol is in the fat family (a lipid) it is insoluble in water. It maintains the structure of cells, keeping a balance between stability and fluidity.  When cholesterol levels are not adequate, the cell membrane becomes leaky. Cholesterol is the body's repair substance: scar tissue contains high levels of cholesterol, including scar tissue in the arteries.