Escape the pharmaceutical firing squad

As I said yesterday, the mainstream has it backwards when it comes to treating heart disease and Type II diabetes. They want us to take cholesterol-lowering statin drugs.

Of course, these drugs do lower your cholesterol. But the promised, ultimate benefit to reduce your heart disease risk is very questionable in the vast majority of people. Plus, these cholesterol-lowering drugs cause a number of toxic side effects, including raising your Type II diabetes risk. Of course, having Type II diabetes increases your risk of cardio-metabolic heart disease.

So it’s a vicious circle.

And if you take a statin to prevent heart disease, much less prevent Type II diabetes, you’re basically stepping in front of the firing squad.

So what are your treatment options if you have Type II diabetes?

First, stay away from any new drugs on the market. In fact, according to a review by my colleague Dr. Donald Light, 90 percent of all new drugs over the past three decades are no more effective–or just slightly more effective–than older, proven drugs. That statistic means only 10 percent of new drugs over the last 30 years represented true, therapeutic breakthroughs. But 50 percent of new drugs approved have a worse safety profile than the drugs they were meant to replace. Not a good trade-off to pay more for newer, more dangerous drugs. And the FDA turns a blind eye to it all.

Plus, the newer, more expensive Type II diabetes drugs have all kinds of problems with safety and effectiveness, as I often report. I don’t know why anyone would use them. Big pharma certainly wants you to use them as they’re still on patent and return a tidy profit.

By comparison, the Type II diabetes drug metformin has been on the market decades and you can find it in an inexpensive, generic form.

Plus, metformin is the only Type II diabetes drug shown to prevent all the complications of diabetes in the eyes, kidneys, heart, and peripheral nerves. And, as a major “side effect,” it lowers the risk of cancer.

As I first uncovered in the February 2013 issue of my Insiders’ Cures newsletter, metformin actually derives from an ancient European folk remedy called French lilac. The plant also grows in the U.S. where it is called “goat’s rue.” Of course, the USDA classifies the plant as a “noxious weed.” (One man’s medicine is another man’s poison, especially when it comes to U.S. government agencies and natural remedies.)

Despite decades of use by millions of people worldwide, researchers had not ever fully studied metformin’s cellular and biochemical activities. So a large group of 48 scientists at the Helmholtz Institute in Munich, Germany, recently rectified that situation. They analyzed both genetic and metabolic data on Type II diabetes patients treated with metformin.

Specifically, the German researchers honed in on three key metabolites (called acyl-aklyl-phosphatidylcholines) in metformin patients and a control group of patients not taking the drug.

Prior research links higher levels of these three metabolites with a higher risk of heart disease. But the researchers found patients using metformin had significantly lower concentrations of these three metabolites compared to control groups.

Of course, we know uncontrolled Type II diabetes can eventually lead to heart disease. And it only makes sense. High blood sugar adversely affects small blood vessels throughout the body. So we can also assume it adversely affects the small blood vessels that supply the heart.

Managing your Type II diabetes and blood sugar is critical to preventing heart disease. Doctors need to move beyond cholesterol…and concentrate on helping patients lower their blood sugar (as well as lower high blood pressure).

If you have Type II diabetes and are at risk of heart disease, the last drugs you would ever want to take are statins, which we now know cause Type II diabetes. On the other hand, it looks like effectively treating Type II diabetes with metformin reduces three key metabolites that contribute to heart disease.

I have been recommending metformin for years to manage blood sugar and prevent the complications of Type II diabetes. Just remember–metformin can reduce your absorption of vitamin B12, so make sure to supplement daily with a good vitamin B complex.

Don’t get caught in front of pharma’s circular firing squad. The least medicine that works is the best medicine. And the fewer different drugs you have to take, the better.


  1. “Effects of Metformin on Metabolite Profiles and LDL Cholesterol in Patients With Type 2 Diabetes,” Diabetes Care ( 8/5/2015