For years, the crony, corporatist medical industry has been attacking aspirin. Specifically, its daily use to prevent cardiovascular disease and heart attacks.
Typically, the rebukes have lacked scientific substance, aimed only at getting people to take a dangerous, expensive prescription drug to lower heart disease risk instead of the inexpensive, time-tested, over-the-counter (OTC) aspirin.
But a recent study looked closely into aspirin’s association with bleeding (a real potential concern). So, I had to take a serious look…
But before I give you all the details, let’s first take a look at the history of aspirin.
Effective painkiller derived from Nature
Aspirin is an effective OTC non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) that’s been around for more than 100 years. In fact, it first entered the market as a drug in 1898—eight years before the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) even existed. Then, the FDA “grandfathered” it in as an “existing” drug in 1938 because of its long history as a safe, effective drug.
But you should know that aspirin actually derives from the plant world…
In fact, when the Earth was occupied by just plants and arthropods (insects), plants developed many different natural chemicals to defend themselves against insects.
And the white willow tree (Salyx alba—from which the active ingredients “salicylates” were named) developed a protective chemical called salicylic acid. This chemical is actually concentrated in the bark to keep insects from boring into the tree. And, if swallowed by the insect, it essentially causes the insect to “bleed” to death.
Native Americans learned they could use willow bark as a traditional botanical medicine. They chewed it or boiled a tea from the willow’s inner bark to relieve fever or other minor pains like toothaches, headaches, or arthritis.
Plus, since an active ingredient in one of Nature’s plants is bound to show up in another, meadowsweet grass was also found to be a rich source of salicylic acid. In fact, it’s still used for some commercial cultivation today.
And although aspirin has been safely used to reduce fever, inflammation, and pain in humans for hundreds of years, it does have a bleeding property. And a new study examined the magnitude of this risk…
Does aspirin increase bleeding risk?
The new aspirin analysis looked at 11 previously published studies involving just over 157,000 participants.
Overall, there was no difference in mortality (death) rates between the aspirin groups and the control groups. (As I often explain, mortality is the only real, reliable statistical “endpoint.”) And this analysis confirmed that taking aspirin doesn’t increase death rates—which is important.
Plus, the risk of heart attack was 15 percent lower in the aspirin groups. In fact, in one trial, aspirin was associated with a highly significant 35 percent reduction in heart attack risk! That’s a far better reduction than what we see with cholesterol-lowering statin drugs.
In addition, in patients who had zero or minimal use of statins, the reduction in heart attack risk was even greater. Which isn’t too surprising, since statins have numerous negative side effects that increase chronic disease and mortality.
However, the researchers did find that the aspirin group had a 47 percent higher rate of major bleeding incidents than the control groups. And in one study, the risk of bleeding in the brain among aspirin users increased by 33 percent.
As a result, the researchers concluded that patients should stop taking aspirin and stay on statins. (What a surprise!)
But I take issue with their findings. In fact, the whole study seems like a set up to promote statin use.
So, in my view, here’s what’s happening…
1.) Statistical trickery and confounding factors
To get to those bleeding risk results, the researchers performed some complicated statistical manipulations, such as sub-set analyses. And I’m always wary of that kind of statistical sorcery—as it takes you too far away from the original data.
Plus, there’s a strong familial component to bleeding in the brain also, which the researchers didn’t explore.
Not to mention, I think the negative side effects of statins are cancelling out or reducing the benefits of taking aspirin in patients taking both to reduce their risk of heart attacks.
2.) They didn’t put findings in scientific context
As with any study, we should put these findings in context—against the numerous other scientific studies over the past 100 years, which show aspirin can safely help prevent heart attacks…and even cancer. Plus, it derives from a natural substance that’s been around since the dinosaurs roamed the Earth.
3.) They ignored history of safe use
Aspirin has been safely used on the market for almost 125 years. That’s about 100 years longer than statins have been on the market!
So—why are we only now learning about this magnitude of bleeding risk?
By comparison, statins have only been around for a couple of decades. But it seems with each passing year, more data piles up about the associated risks of statins. Including risks of muscle damage, eye damage, dementia, Type II diabetes, kidney disease, and heart disease itself. Plus, research shows people who take statins don’t lower their risk of heart disease mortality!
Of course, big pharma continues to manipulate the picture to favor prescription drugs (like statins) over a naturally derived, inexpensive, OTC medication (like aspirin).
Talk to your doctor about whether taking aspirin for its ability to prevent heart attacks is right for you. And stay off the statins.
You can also learn more about how to address the REAL factors behind heart disease—without resorting to dangerous drugs or procedures—by referring to my online learning tool, the Heart Attack Prevention & Repair Protocol. To learn more or to sign up today, simply click here now!
P.S. Have you or a loved one been diagnosed with a deadly disease—like cancer, Alzheimer’s, heart disease, diabetes, or arthritis? Or do you simply want to be prepared in case you’re faced with a devastating diagnosis? Well, this Sunday, August 18th at 3 p.m.-EST, I’ll be discussing the countless natural treatments that can halt and reverse such diseases. Admission is FREE to this live event, but I must warn you—spots are limited. So click here to reserve yours today!
“Efficacy and safety of aspirin for primary prevention of cardiovascular events: a meta-analysis and trial sequential analysis of randomized controlled trials.” European Heart Journal, 2019; 40(7): 618-620. doi.org/10.1093/eurheartj/ehy813