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SOS: Sanity over Statins – Sssssh Side effects, pharma’s fingers and a cunning plan

0 by / on 4 Mar 2014, / in Featured

HealthInsightUK has a number of contributors who are experts in statins. Here three of them – Dr John Briffa, Zoë Harcombe and Aidan Goggins respond to the CTT investigation. They explain why side-effect data is unreliable and disagree about whether it is in the drug companies interest that the risk of side-effects is downplayed or is that part of cunning plan? (Read more…)

So you’ve survived cancer – that’s only the beginning

11 by / on 28 Feb 2014, / in Featured

Like returning soldiers cancer survivors are usually given some sort of victory celebration. But as with soldiers for far too many that is just the beginning of a new and much more lonely set of personal battles. About a quarter of cancer survivors – 500.000 people in the UK – are dealing with the long term fall out from their treatment. (Read more…)

Statins: just say no. Sensible reasons why they are stupid medicine

4 by / on 17 Feb 2014, / in Featured

Increasingly people are questioning whether it’s worth taking statins, the cholesterol-lowering drugs that are supposed to cut your risk of developing heart disease. We think they are a really bad idea, unless you’ve already got heart disease, and have explained why… (Read more…)

Drug killing 10,000 in UK every year. How could you tell?

2 by / on 12 Feb 2014, / in Featured

Last week an email containing what looked like a great story arrived in my inbox – drug kills 800,000 in Europe in 5 years! A quick check revealed that that this was no wild or dodgy claim. It was based on research by a cardiologist at Imperial College Professor Darryl Francis, just published in the European Heart Journal.(Read more…)

How the TV bout Sugar vs. Fat was rigged

41 by / on 30 Jan 2014, / in Featured

Just how accurate and informative was BBC2’s Horizon program on Wednesday that aimed at scientifically answering the question: which is more deadly: Eating lots of sugar or lots of fat? The format was to feed two doctors who were also identical twins – Alex and Chris – unlimited amounts of one or the other. Alex got a low carb/high fat diet while Chris followed the traditional low fat/high carb diet with added the sugar. (Read more…)

Science and the great biomedical lottery

6 by / on 22 Jan 2014, / in Featured

Unfortunately for the rest of us today’s medical research is not driven by an abstract search for objective truth but by the need to produce a product. Unless there is a drug at the end of promising new line of research it’s unlikely to attract funding from the biggest payers – the drug companies. Instead it will be parked with the comment that it needs more research, the funding for which will be virtually impossible to obtain, however effective it is. (Read more…)

Vitamins – a waste of money or victims of bad science?

9 by / on 13 Jan 2014, / in Featured

One New Year tradition, along with wondering how you could have spent so much on so little, is making healthy resolutions which may involve some sort of supplement. As a nutritional therapist I’ve been helping people for years to handle chronic disorders and stay healthier by recommending specific nutritional supplements based on risk, coupled with substantial changes in people’s diet. There’s plenty of evidence it benefits people but there’s lots we still don’t know and new well-conducted research is always welcome. (Read More…)

Companies claim drugs’ side effects are commercial secrets

1 by / on 7 Jan 2014, / in Featured

One of the comforting myths about the powerful drugs used in modern medicine is that they are prescribed on the basis of good scientific evidence. Proper randomised clinical trials, we are regularly assured, compare them with a placebo and the results can tell us which are safe and effective.
However this is an illusion. For nearly thirty years drug experts have known that there was a major flaw in this assumption, which doctors and the agencies set up to regulate drugs have chosen largely to ignore. (Read more…)

A guided tour around the statin wonderland

20 by / on 16 Dec 2013, / in Featured

For years official advice on how best to protect yourself from heart disease has been wonderfully simplistic: high levels of ‘bad’ LDL cholesterol are the major cause, so cut your risk by lowering LDL cholesterol production as much as possible with statin drugs.
Now it turns out that this advice was wrong. Not just according to long-term statin critics but it’s admitted by drug companies themselves. (Read more…)

SACN or Sack ‘em: the committee that’s confused about carbs

35 by / on 28 Nov 2013, / in Featured

About ten years ago for various personal reasons I became interested in the benefits of an Atkins-type low carbohydrate diet. I read a lot of research material, talked to many experts and became convinced that the advice to follow a low fat/high carbohydrate diet has been disastrous for our national health. (Read more…)

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