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Ignore the Awkward by Uffe Ravnskov

Ignore the Awkward by Uffe Ravnskov


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Published by 2361983

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Published by: 2361983 on Sep 12, 2012
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As mentioned in the previous chapters several statin experiments showed that
statin treatment increased the risk of cancer. There are also at least thirty studies, which
have shown that people with low cholesterol run a greater risk of getting cancer
compared with people with normal or high cholesterol. The statin proponents still claim
however that reducing cholesterol with statins prevents cancer.
How have they succeeded with that feat, you may ask. How do they explain away
the observation that low cholesterol is associated with cancer?
What they claim is that cancer cells use cholesterol when they grow and therefore
cholesterol goes down. It is true that we need cholesterol to build cells, but it is unlikely
that the liver should be unable to manufacture a few extra molecules of this important
substance to keep the blood cholesterol unchanged.
As I mentioned in the introduction, great amounts of cholesterol are produced
every day depending on how much cholesterol we eat. If we eat too little, the production
increases and vice versa. The number of cholesterol molecules necessary to produce
cancer cells must be trivial when compared with the large number used for keeping the
blood cholesterol unchanged and for renewing the cells of the skin, the mucous
membranes and all the organs of the body. What the proponents also ignore is that in at
least eight studies blood cholesterol was low fifteen to thirty years before the cancer

The allegation that statin treatment prevents cancer is based on studies where the
authors have compared the risk of cancer for people on statin treatment and for untreated

In some of these studies no significant difference was seen and the authors
concluded that statins did not produce cancer. In some of them, there were more cancers
in the untreated group. Therefore, they say, statins may be useful to combat cancer.
The comparisons are flawed because, on average, untreated people have lower
cholesterol than normal because today your cholesterol must be very low to prevent your


doctor from prescribing statin treatment. In contrast, people on statin treatment have lived
most of their life with normal or high cholesterol. Furthermore, in many of the eighteen
studies the researchers had not asked whether the ‘patients’ really had taken their
medicine. It is a relevant question because, as I mentioned above, adherence to statin
treatment is low.

If cancer is seen less often among those who are on statin treatment, a relevant
question is whether it is due to a few years of statin treatment or it is due to the lifelong
protection because of their high cholesterol. If untreated people have cancer more often,
is it due to the lack of statins or is it due to their low cholesterol? Nobody knows. The
only way to learn whether statin treatment has any influence on cancer cells is to compare
untreated and treated people, all of whom have had the same cholesterol level previously,
as is done in the statin trials. The reader already knows what such experiments revealed.

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