The nutritional supplement policosanol is the most impressive for lowering cholesterol.
Q. I have high cholesterol and take Lipitor. My liver is inflamed but my doctor wants to keep me on the medication. Are there natural alternatives for the drug?
S.G., Phoenix, Arizona

A. One of the most common side effects of statin drugs (Lipitor, Mevacor, Pravachol, Zocor) is elevated liver-function tests, a sign that the liver is being mildly inflamed from the medication. The inflammation may prevent the liver from performing its detoxification functions effectively. This can lead to a buildup of toxins and free radicals in the body, which contribute to excessive fatigue, accelerated aging and degenerative diseases.

Rather than worrying about the side effects of statin drugs, why not try the foundation therapy for high cholesterol? This is a low-fat, low-sugar diet void of fried foods; excessive saturated fats from fatty cuts of meat; high-fat dairy products such as butter, whole milk, ice cream and cheese; and hydrogenated fats, which are found in margarine, most commercial peanut butters and some salad dressings.

For a nutritional supplement, policosanol is the most impressive for lowering cholesterol. It is a natural supplement derived from the wax of sugar cane and has no known side effects. It lowers the dangerous low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol and increases the protective high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol.

Some well-designed comparative trials have been performed against statin drugs, and policosanol was almost equally as effective as most of the statins. But it takes longer than statins to achieve its cholesterol-lowering effect, typically six to eight weeks for a significant drop.

The recommended starting dosage is 10 mg (milligrams) once a day, usually with your evening meal. This typically will drop the LDL by about 20 percent to 25 percent in the first six to eight weeks. If your cholesterol isn't lowered to a normal level, increase the dose to 20 mg a day, and this usually drops the LDL by 25 percent to 30 percent. HDL usually increases by 15 percent to 25 percent.

If you are taking the medication Coumadin, your PT levels should be monitored by your physician even though policosanol typically does not affect the PT level. Also, you will need to be monitored by your physician if you have a medical condition that requires anti-coagulant or anti-platelet medications. You should be able to find policosanol in health-food stores.

Q. I was in an automobile accident four years ago. I've seen five doctors and been on many medications, but I still have back pain and terrible muscle spasms. What can I do?
E.K., Las Vegas, Nevada

A. Dr. John E. Sarno, professor of clinical rehabilitation medicine at New York University School of Medicine, has treated thousands of patients with chronic back pain. He has found that injuries of the back are rarely responsible for the chronic back pain.

He discovered that tension actually leads to muscle spasm and back pain (a condition he named Tension Myositis Syndrome). Muscle spasms in the back create constriction of the blood vessels that supply the muscles with blood and oxygen, a process that leads to decreased oxygen for muscles and nerves. The result is a cycle: more spasms and more pain create more anxiety and more tension, which create more spasms and more pain.

Sarno found that many of his patients had anger, repressed or internalized, and that it was the root cause of their muscle spasms. He now counsels them not to focus on their pain but on their anger.

As Christians, we have the advantage of being filled with God's Holy Spirit, who can bring all things to our remembrance, even the repressed anger we may carry from our childhood or adolescent years. Simply understanding this process reprograms the body for health instead of pain.

The next step is a willingness to start taking "baby steps" of faith and to gradually begin performing movements that previously you weren't able to do.

Draw closer to God. Experience the presence of the Holy Spirit every month as you read Charisma magazine. Sign up now to get Charisma for as low as $1 per issue.

Get to know the Holy Spirit and how to interact with Him on a daily basis. Learn to enter God's presence and hear His voice clearly for yourself! Go deeper in your faith with Life in the Spirit and change your life and destiny. Are you ready to start your journey?

Did you enjoy this health article? Click here to receive new health articles by email.

Your Turn

Comment Guidelines
View/Add Comments
  • Hillary Clinton

    What if Hillary Clinton Wins the White House?

    Polls have Mrs. Clinton leading by 11 points. The church must be prepared.

  • Holy Spirit prophetic

    7 Ways to Cultivate Sensitivity to the Holy Spirit

    Too many of God's people are led by fear, doubt, man-pleasing, presumption, assumption, idols ...

  • What if You Could Save $500 This Week?

    What if You Could Save $500 This Week?

    Start saving for emergencies today with the $500 Savings Challenge by brightpeak financial. It's chock-full of inspiration, great savings tips and the motivation to make a dent in your savings—for real! Go to 500savingschallenge.com to sign up!

  • Jezebel puppets

    10 Ways to Spot Jezebel's Spiritually Slick Undercover Con Artists

    It's time to stop tolerating Jezebel in all its many manifestations.

  • Highway exit signs

    Prophetic Word: Watch for the Exit Signs to Light Up This Season

    Don't be afraid to get your hands dirty in the harvest fields. The "barnyard anointing" ...

  • Finger pointing

    The Accuser vs. Donald Trump—and Us All

    This isn't a political persuasion piece, but a current-event case study in the strategies of ...

  • Lance Wallnau

    Lance Wallnau Is on Fire and on Target With His Insights on the Culture and This Election

    I'm sickened by the self-righteous, weak-kneed "evangelicals" who want to be liked by ...

  • Daily scripture reading, meditation and prayer can seem elusive with your busy schedule.

    10 Small Steps to Deeper Intimacy With Holy Spirit in Your Quiet Times

    If deep quiet times seem just out of your reach with your busy schedule, try one of these ...

  • In October, many things will be realigned in your life, including your vision.

    5 Prophetic Revelations About God's October Surprise

    "The winds of apostolic change are blowing across the land and realigning you."

  • Continue Your Journey with the Holy Spirit

    Continue Your Journey with the Holy Spirit

    Follow God on the most fulfilling journey of your life with Encounter the Holy Spirit! Break away from past hurts and press into the One who wants a personal encounter with you.

  • Dream the Unimaginable In His Presence

    Dream the Unimaginable In His Presence

    Reach your full potential and be led by His Spirit. In His Presence takes you to a deeper understanding of who God is and how he communicates with us.

  • Set Your Spirit on Fire

    Set Your Spirit on Fire

    Receive the power and gifts that come through the Holy Spirit Baptism. Don’t go empty-handed; accept all that He has for you! His power is available to those who ask.

  • Put on the Full Armor of God

    Put on the Full Armor of God

    Break every stronghold with the power of the Holy Spirit. Use the power of your tongue to declare and decree the Word of God. Witness heaven move on your behalf.

Use Desktop Layout
Charisma Magazine — Empowering believers for life in the Spirit