Daily readers of our blog know that we have some reoccurring themes. One is that health is interlocked — one aspect of well-being impacts many others. Another is that we write about the newest research and published findings. And a third is that we always urge you to speak to your doctor before making changes to your routine.
Research can change our future health plans. However, a new find isn’t always applicable to everyone. People have different health needs. So, even though a find may say people should do something, it doesn’t mean you specifically should do it. The work we’re looking at today is interesting but isn’t something you should act on without speaking to your doctor.
A new paper says that statins may be linked to obesity levels. Statins and blood pressure medication work well. They lower cholesterol levels and help blood pressure levels. They protect people against heart attacks and strokes. Experts theorize that people aren’t working to lose weight as they feel it’s unnecessary if they take the pills. Obesity is linked to fatty liver disease, arthritis and heart failure.
“Better treatments like statins and blood pressure tablets... are indirectly helping to fuel the obesity crisis,” said lead author Naveed Sattar, professor of metabolic medicine at the Univ. of Glasgow. “It is a brilliant success that people are being kept alive for longer, so that someone who might have died at 60 from a stroke or heart attack is living until the age of 75. But if weight is not discussed, that person could end up with multiple health problems linked partly to being overweight and on dozens of different drugs.”
This new paper does not suggest that statins or blood pressure medications cause weight gain. Instead, people who take the medicines feel like they don’t need to lose weight. But the medications shouldn’t be used in place of weight management. The paper also doesn’t mean a person should avoid medications to prevent weight gain.
“Decades of research have shown statins and blood pressure-lowering drugs save lives. If these have been recommended by your doctor, it’s vital that you keep taking them,” said Dr. Sonya Babu-Narayan, cardiologist and associate medical director at the British Heart Foundation.
Both the American Heart Association and the American College of Cardiology place a large emphasis on lifestyle when it comes to heart health. There has been debate raging around the efficacy of statins for years. That is why it is so important to talk to your doctor about whether they are right for you and if they should be a part of your routine.
To maintain good heart health, weight management is crucial. Statins do not cause weight gain but might make it seem permissible. It’s essential to stay on top of all of your health goals, not just medication. Talk to your doctor about what’s right for you and what your plan should entail; a healthy routine is more than just pills!