and How to Help Stay Healthy
Heart disease continues to be one of the top leading causes of death in many countries. Fortunately, there are steps that can be taken to reduce the risk of developing heart disease. One choice is to begin statin therapy, but it’s important to understand a few key factors before starting.
What is Statin Therapy?
Statin therapy is a type of medication that is used to lower “bad” cholesterol levels, or low density lipoprotein (LDL), and increase “good” cholesterol levels, or high density lipoprotein (HDL). LDL cholesterol is known to harden and cause plaque buildup in cardiovascular arteries, whereas HDL cholesterol helps to reduce the risk of developing heart disease.
Benefits of Statin Therapy
Many doctors suggest statin therapy as part of a lifestyle program to reduce the risk of heart disease. In addition to lowering “bad” cholesterol levels, statin therapy has also been linked to other health benefits, such as lower risk of some types of cancer and cardiovascular events, as well as slower cognitive decline.
Possible Side Effects
Although statin therapy can be beneficial, it is important to note that there are potential side effects. Muscle aches and pains, liver damage, cramping and fatigue have all been reported as side effects, especially if your statins are not taken as prescribed.
Tips to Take When Starting Statin Therapy
Before beginning statin therapy, it’s essential to discuss your overall health with your doctor. Let your doctor know if you have any other health conditions and any medications that you are already taking. To help lower your risk of possible side effects, here are a few tips to consider when starting statin therapy:
- Understand your personal factors, such as age and existing health conditions.
- Know the potential side effects and simplify your dose as needed.
- Engage in regular physical activity and develop a nutritious diet.
- Monitor your progress periodically with regular checkups and tests.
- Continue to take your medications even if you feel no different.
Overall, statin therapy can be a safe and effective way to reduce your risk of heart disease. Make sure to discuss your options with your doctor to ensure that this is the best approach for your health.