Why Cholesterol Levels Have No Effect on Cardiovascular Disease (And Things to Think about Instead)

April 16, 2018

Dr. Malcolm Kendrick is a medical doctor, author, speaker, and sceptic living in Cheshire, England.  His evidence-based arguments refute the lipid hypothesis and other ideas related to chronic illness that has resulted in a pervasive culture of fear and misinformation.  His popular blog features an ongoing series of posts on the real causes of heart disease, pointing to endothelial damage as a causal factor and nitric oxide as vital for preserving health.

Dr. Kendrick is with us to share not only what really causes cardiovascular disease, but the specific environmental and psychosocial factors that cause the most harm, and what we need to do to maintain good health. We also discuss unexpected side effects of common medications and supplements and the healing power of specific micronutrients.  If you enjoy this podcast, you can support Dr. Kendrick’s work by pre-ordering his latest book, A Statin Nation: Damaging Millions in a Brave New Post-Health World, available 7/12/18.

Here’s the outline of this interview with Malcolm Kendrick:

[00:01:05] Book: The Great Cholesterol Con: The Truth About What Really Causes Heart Disease and How to Avoid it, by Malcolm Kendrick.

[00:01:07] Book: Doctoring Data: How to Sort Out Medical Advice from Medical Nonsense, by Malcolm Kendrick.

[00:01:14] The International Network of Cholesterol Skeptics (THINCS).

[00:01:46] Trail Runner Nation Podcast: Metabolic Flexibility with Christopher Kelly.

[00:02:59] Highlights email series.

[00:03:01] Podcast: The True Root Causes of Cardiovascular Disease, with Jeffry Gerber.

[00:03:07] Blog series: What causes heart disease?

[00:05:28] Study: Hayashi, Keiko, et al. "Laughter lowered the increase in postprandial blood glucose." Diabetes care 26.5 (2003): 1651-1652.

[00:06:20] Stress hormones, sympathetic nervous system.

[00:07:32] Graph: Lithuanian death rate; Study: Kristenson, Margareta, et al. "Increased psychosocial strain in Lithuanian versus Swedish men: the LiVicordia study." Psychosomatic Medicine 60.3 (1998): 277-282.

[00:08:25] Paul Rosch, M.D, founder of the American Institute of Stress.

[00:10:20] Endothelium, glycocalyx.

[00:11:12] Nitric Oxide (NO).

[00:11:37] Alfred Nobel, nitroglycerin (glyceryl trinitrate, or GTN), Viagra.

[00:13:13] Study: Andersson, Daniel P., et al. "Association between treatment for erectile dysfunction and death or cardiovascular outcomes after myocardial infarction." Heart (2017): heartjnl-2016.

[00:13:39] Sunlight as nitric oxide stimulant.

[00:14:45] Vasculitis, Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE), Rheumatoid arthritis, Sickle-cell disease.

[00:17:05] Endothelial progenitor cells.

[00:17:55] Carl von Rokitansky, Rudolf Virchow.

[00:21:19] Endothelial damage required for arterial plaque.

[00:21:52] Study: Law, M. R., and S. G. Thompson. "Low serum cholesterol and the risk of cancer: an analysis of the published prospective studies." Cancer causes & control 2.4 (1991): 253-261.

[00:23:49] Study: Ravnskov, Uffe, et al. "Lack of an association or an inverse association between low-density-lipoprotein cholesterol and mortality in the elderly: a systematic review." BMJ open 6.6 (2016): e010401.

[00:25:03] Statins increasing NO, studies: 1, 2, 3.

[00:26:52] Study: Lanphear, Bruce P., et al. "Low-level lead exposure and mortality in US adults: a population-based cohort study." The Lancet Public Health (2018).

[00:28:17] Corticosteroids.

[00:30:25] Familial Hypercholesterolemia.

[00:34:56] Study: Winnik, Stephan, et al. "Systemic VEGF inhibition accelerates experimental atherosclerosis and disrupts endothelial homeostasis–implications for cardiovascular safety." International journal of cardiology 168.3 (2013): 2453-2461.

[00:36:29] QRISK survey for heart disease.

[00:41:21] Inflammation as healing.

[00:42:40] Study: Willis, G. C. "The reversibility of atherosclerosis." Canadian Medical Association Journal 77.2 (1957): 106.

[00:44:36] Corticosteroids reduce inflammation, increase CVD risk, NSAIDs.

[00:45:05] Study: Guilhem, Gaël, et al. "Effects of air-pulsed cryotherapy on neuromuscular recovery subsequent to exercise-induced muscle damage." The American journal of sports medicine 41.8 (2013): 1942-1951.

[00:49:06] Lipoprotein A.

[00:51:27] Vitamin C deficiency as possible cause of CVD.

[00:53:01] Study: Lee, A. J., et al. "Plasma fibrinogen and coronary risk factors: the Scottish Heart Health Study." Journal of clinical epidemiology 43.9 (1990): 913-919.

[00:55:27] Diabetes, triglycerides, sepsis, gingivitis as procoagulants.

[00:58:39] Major endothelial offenders.

[01:00:03] Study: Escolar, Esteban, et al. "The effect of an EDTA-based chelation regimen on patients with diabetes mellitus and prior myocardial infarction in the Trial to Assess Chelation Therapy (TACT)." Circulation: Cardiovascular Quality and Outcomes (2013): CIRCOUTCOMES-113.

[01:01:03] Study: Douaud, Gwenaëlle, et al. "Preventing Alzheimer’s disease-related gray matter atrophy by B-vitamin treatment." Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 110.23 (2013): 9523-9528.

[01:01:44] Study: Marik, Paul E., et al. "Hydrocortisone, vitamin C, and thiamine for the treatment of severe sepsis and septic shock: a retrospective before-after study." Chest 151.6 (2017): 1229-1238.

[01:02:27] Allen Smith, dying of flu, recovered with Vitamin C.

[01:03:13] sunlight, viagra, stress management, alcohol.

[01:04:23] Blue zones, strong social relationships.

[01:05:07] Lifestyle and environmental factors associated with lower life expectancy.

[01:13:05] Statins.

[01:15:49] Absolute risk vs. relative risk; side effect vs. adverse effect, adverse events.

[01:21:07] Problems caused by statins.

[01:21:29] CoQ10, ATP.

[01:23:47] Placebo effect, nocebo effect.

[01:24:40] Study: Gupta, Ajay, et al. "Adverse events associated with unblinded, but not with blinded, statin therapy in the Anglo-Scandinavian Cardiac Outcomes Trial—Lipid-Lowering Arm (ASCOT-LLA): a randomised double-blind placebo-controlled trial and its non-randomised non-blind extension phase." The Lancet 389.10088 (2017): 2473-2481.

[01:25:45] Study: Cohen, Jerome D., et al. "Understanding Statin Use in America and Gaps in Patient Education (USAGE): an internet-based survey of 10,138 current and former statin users." Journal of clinical lipidology 6.3 (2012): 208-215.

[01:26:32] PCSK9 inhibitors.

[01:27:54] Study: Sabatine, Marc S., et al. "Evolocumab and clinical outcomes in patients with cardiovascular disease." New England Journal of Medicine 376.18 (2017): 1713-1722.

[01:35:16] L-arginine, citrulline.

[01:39:34] Study: Tunstall-Pedoe, Hugh. "Does dietary potassium lower blood pressure and protect against coronary heart disease and death? Findings from the Scottish Heart Health Study?." Seminars in nephrology. Vol. 19. No. 5. 1999.

[01:40:40] Study: Graudal, Niels. "A radical sodium reduction policy is not supported by randomized controlled trials or observational studies: grading the evidence." American journal of hypertension 29.5 (2016): 543-548.

[01:43:55] Groupthink, cognitive bias.

[01:44:21] Michael Alderman, M.D.

[01:44:48] Evolutionary Psychology.

[01:45:58] Peer Review.

[01:51:36] Study: Bronstein, Alvin C., et al. "2010 Annual Report of the American Association of Poison Control Centers’ National Poison Data System (NPDS): 28th Annual Report." Clinical Toxicology 49.10 (2011): 910-941.

[01:52:57] Book: A Statin Nation: Damaging Millions in a Brave New Post-Health World, by Malcolm Kendrick.  

[01:57:37] drmalcolmkendrick.org.

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