Monthly Archives: October 2006

Blame the niacin

Despite the fact that niacin is: 1) A vitamin–vitamin B3 2) One of the oldest cholesterol-reducing agents around with a long-standing track record of effectiveness and safety 3) Available as a prescription drug as well as a variety of “nutritional … Continue reading

Posted in Niacin | 7 Comments

Eat fish three times a day

Patients commonly ask, “Why can’t I get vitamin D from food? I drink milk and eat fish.” They’re absolutely right: both vitamin D and some oily fish contain vitamin D. However, it’s a matter of quantity. An 8 oz. glass … Continue reading

Posted in Fish oil | 1 Comment

What if I had a cure for coronary disease?

If I had a cure for coronary disease, what would it look like? What would constitute cure? Would you recognize it if I showed it to you? In the strictest sense, “cure” means an absolute elimination of any sign of … Continue reading

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Alternatives to fish oil capsules

Occasionally, someone will be unable to take fish oil due to the large capsule size, excessive fishy belching, or stomach upset. The easiest solution is usually just to try a different brand, e.g., Sam’s Club (Makers’ Mark brand) enteric-coated. However, … Continue reading

Posted in Fish oil, Omega-3 fatty acids | 2 Comments

Ignoring your heart scan is medical negligence

I continue to be dumbfounded that many doctors continue to pooh-pooh or ignore CT heart scans when people get them. I can’t count the number of people I’ve seen or talked to through the Track Your Plaque program who’ve been … Continue reading

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Light the fuse of heart disease

Father Bob, despite his calling as a priest and counselor, led a stressful life. His average day was packed tightly with commitments: counseling members of his congregation, visiting the hospital, more official priest and church duties. At age 53, his … Continue reading

Posted in Heart disease | 1 Comment

“I don’t know what I’m doing here”

Jim came to the office at the prompting of his wife. At age 52, Jim was semi-retired, having to work only a few hours a week to maintain his business. He’d had a high cholesterol identified about 10 years earlier … Continue reading

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I had a heart attack–and I don’t know why!

Kevin came to my office for another opinion. A husband and father of two teenagers, Kevin had his first heart attack at age 39. Kevin received two stents to his right coronary artery. The entire process took place in a … Continue reading

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Butter basics

There’s lot of confusion about butter, margarines, and their substitutes. Butter/margarine substitutes that avoid the negative aspects and provide modest health benefits are available, but I find that people confuse what’s what. So here’s a brief primer. Butter–Avoid it. Plain … Continue reading

Posted in Nutrition | 3 Comments

Let Dr. Friedewald rest in peace

In the 1960s, doctors struggled with the concept of cholesterol and its relationship to heart disease. It was becoming clear that higher levels of cholesterol were predictive of heart disease. It was also becoming clear that the low-density fraction of … Continue reading

Posted in LDL cholesterol | 1 Comment