heart disease

Statins Damage Gut Microbiome and Contribute to Antibiotic Resistance

Our digestive tract contains about 2 kg of microbes (the microbiome). These microbes, often referred to as friendly bacteria, help with digestion, the production of vitamin B and vitamin K, and play a major role in the immune system.

A recent study published in Nature has found that statins disturb the gut microbiome - they inhibit the growth of some potentially useful bacteria in the gut and allow other bacteria to flourish and become superbugs resistant to antibiotics.

The study found that a wide range of commonly prescribed medications interfere with the gut microbiome, including simvastatin.

The study confirms what has previously been seen in studies done on mice given statins. These previous studies have found that rosuvastatin, atorvastatin and pravastatin also cause profound alterations in the balance of gut microbes. And this imbalance is similar to what has been seen in diet-related obesity.

Antibiotic Resistance -the white paper discs contain antibiotics. Most of the bacteria in the dish on the left are sensitive to the antibiotics. The bacteria in the dish on the right are resistant to antibiotics.

Antibiotic Resistance -the white paper discs contain antibiotics. Most of the bacteria in the dish on the left are sensitive to the antibiotics. The bacteria in the dish on the right are resistant to antibiotics.

The human body contains about one third more bacteria cells than human cells, and scientists are still investigating the many ways that these colonies of bacteria live in symbiosis with us. The implications of the changes in the bacteria caused by statins is difficult to predict, however the changes are likely to weaken the host's immune system and ability to produce some specific nutrients. Researchers for the article published in Nature say that statins are also contributing to the global problem of antibiotic resistance.

Antibiotic resistance, according to the World Health Organisation, is one of the most urgent public health problems and “Antibiotic resistance is rising to dangerously high levels in all parts of the world”.

This is an important example of how medicine has become unsustainable. This will likely become yet another serious adverse effect of the widespread use of statins that will simply be ignored in the push to keep hundreds of millions of healthy people as patients for profit.


Maier, L et al. Extensive impact of non-antibiotic drugs on human gut bacteria. Nature doi:10.1038/nature25979. https://www.nature.com/articles/nature25979

Caparros-Martin, JA et al. Statin therapy causes gut dysbiosis in mice through a PXR-dependent mechanism. Microbione 2017; 5: 95. doi: 10.1186/s40168-017-0312-4. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5550934/

Nolan, JA et al. The influence of rosuvastatin on the gastrointestinal microbiota and host gene expression profiles. Am J Physiol Gastrointest Liver Physiol. 2017 May 1;312(5):G488-G497. doi: 10.1152/ajpgi.00149.2016. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/28209601

Antibiotic Resistence – World Health Organisation. http://www.who.int/mediacentre/factsheets/antibiotic-resistance/en/

Daily Mail. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-5521767/Statins-hayfever-pills-fueling-antibiotic-resistance.html

The Telegraph. https://www.telegraph.co.uk/science/2018/03/19/statins-hayfever-pills-could-driving-antibiotic-resistance-warn/

Image Source: Dr Graham Beards at en.wikipedia [CC BY-SA 4.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0) or GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html)], via Wikimedia Commons

Cholesterol in the Human Body

If we google 'cholesterol' of course we'll find thousands of images portraying it as "artery-clogging", but what about the real functions of cholesterol? 

I have created this one page info sheet / poster in an attempt to re-educate about the many things cholesterol is actually used for within the body.

Please send this A4 sized image to anyone you think is afraid of their cholesterol.


-Print and use as a poster

-Email / hand out to friends and colleagues

-Fix to the front of your statin medication cupboard 

             JPEG version: cholesterol_poster_A4

             PDF version: cholesterol_poster_A4


Did Dan Buettner make a Mistake with his Blue Zones?

Dan Buettner is the author of Blue Zones, a book investigating some of the places in the world where people live the longest. Buetter attempts to unlock the secrets of a long healthy life by looking at the nutrition and lifestyles of people from certain parts of Peru, Italy, the United States and Japan.

The book has considerable merit in that it describes in detail many of the lifestyle habits that have been proven to promote longevity. However, Buettner appears to have made a gross error with regards to the nutritional aspects. In particular, I’m referring to his coverage of the Island of Sardinia, Italy.

Pork Dish Typical of Barbagia Region

Pork Dish Typical of Barbagia Region

The Barbagia Region of Sardinia, and Surrounding Area

The Barbagia Region of Sardinia, and Surrounding Area

The island of Sardinia not only has a large number of people who live to be more than 100, but it is also one of the few places in the world were men live as long as women. 

Most regions of Sardinia are associated with incredibly good health, however, the region that has been highlighted as having a particularly long life is called Barbagia. 

I have had the privilege of visiting Sardinia, and several other places associated with longevity, during the filming of Statin Nation II. In Sardinia, I found the traditional diet to be in stark contrast to what Buettner describes. He states:

"It’s loaded with homegrown fruits and vegetables such as zucchini, eggplant, tomatoes, and fava beans that may reduce the risk of heart disease and colon cancer. Also on the table: dairy products such as milk from grass-fed sheep and pecorino cheese, which, like fish, contribute protein and omega-3 fatty acids. "

Unfortunately, this common myth about the traditional Sardinian diet has been copied by various websites and commentators. 

The cheese part is certainly correct. However, the Barbagia region is for the most part, up in the mountains, away from the coast, and traditionally the people who live there do not eat very much fish. Their diet manly consists of meat. Suckling pig being a particular favorite.

In fact, in 2011, Sardinians called for formal recognition of their diet insisting that the secret to a long life can be found in their traditional diet of lamb, roast piglet, milk and cheese”

Sardinian Market

Sardinian Market

I believe the reason why Buettner got it wrong was not because of a deliberate attempt to deceive, but more likely its another example of what happens when we look at the world through the current medical dietary dogma. After all, if you believe that meat and animal fats are bad for you, then by default you wouldn’t list them as contributors to longevity. Which is a shame because people might continue to be misinformed. 

Sardinia, along with many other so called paradoxes will be included in Statin Nation II.

$TATIN NATION II - First Intro Clip

Towards the end of last year, new cholesterol guidelines were introduced in the US. These guidelines have been shown to be based on flawed ‘evidence’, yet are set to double the number of people who take statin medications. 

This issue was covered fairly extensively at the time, however, it is important to keep in mind that despite the criticisms, and the flaws, the guidelines are still being forced through. Doctors will have little choice but to follow them, and millions more people will be exposed to the serious adverse effects of statins.

This video clip includes comments from Dr Malcolm Kendrick, who you probably know already, and Mr Sherif Sultan, who is a leading consultant vascular surgeon, based in Ireland. 

To read about Mr Sultan’s credentials, please click here

For Dr Kendrick’s blog, please click here

Mr Sultan’s published critique of statins 

Majority of panelists on controversial new cholesterol guidelines have current or recent ties to drug manufacturers - British Medical Journal article.

To support $TATIN NATION II please click here

It's Not Just Adults that will be Over-Medicated

During the last few days, people within the medical community, the media, and the general public have been astonished to find the level of incompetence associated with the release of the new cholesterol guidelines. It's ironic that we are still referring to them as cholesterol guidelines; the previous approach of 'know your numbers' has now been conveniently changed to 'ignore your numbers'. Which seems to be an attempt to try and put as many adults on statins as possible. It has now been widely reported that the risk calculator (even when it is working correctly) will over-estimate risk and will result in even more over-prescription of statins.

At the same time that this has been taking place, there has been a quieter, perhaps even more alarming development. Whilst the highly complex but considerably flawed algorithm is about to be rolled out on adults, the childhood obesity problem is being used as an excuse to monitor the cholesterol levels of children. We can now see how this is playing out.

Back in 2008, the American Academy of Paediatrics called for the screening of cholesterol levels in children. Reports at the time, referred to children as young as eight being put on statin medications.

Then, in 2011, the National Heart Lung and Blood Institute (NHLBI) released new guidelines that were endorsed by the American Academy of Paediatrics. These recommended universal screening of  9 to 11-year-old children and targeted screening of some subgroups. Yes, another 'expert panel' dictating to doctors. 

Not only do these recommendations directly influence how doctors prescribe medications, but the idea also pervades everyone else's consciousness. In particular, we should be concerned about allied health professionals and others who may unintentionally do the wrong thing.

A case in point is the recent announcement that schools in Nixa, Missouri. after receiving part of a $41,916 grant, will now be able to perform cholesterol screenings on 5th graders.

The cholesterol tests will be done under the Cardiac Kids Program, which is put on by CoxHealth and Kohl’s CARDIAC Kids.

Some parts of this program will be beneficial in terms of exercise and healthier eating. Hopefully it will help to reduce the amount of processed food and sugar in the children's diets'. But monitoring, and possibly lowering cholesterol levels from such a young age would cause considerable harm. Since cholesterol is used for:

  • the repair of damaged tissues
  • a large proportion of the membrane of every cell within the body
  • the raw material to make Vitamin D
  • the raw material to make all of the steroidal hormones, such as pregnenolone, progesterone, testosterone. oestrogen, and cortisol
  • bile acids to digest fats
  • key cellular signalling mechanisms (the “intelligence” of the cell)
  • the immune system
  • the production of new neurons in the developing brain – the highest concentration of cholesterol in the body is found in the brain and the nervous system

There is no indication that the Cardiac Kids Program is funded in anyway by pharmaceutical companies, however, because of the misinformation about cholesterol well meaning people end up doing big pharma's work for them.

Here is the news clip from the local news channel reporting the Cardiac Kids Program

Australian National TV Helps to Expose the Cholesterol Myths (Copying Several Parts of $TATIN NATION)

ABC's TV show Catalyst has just broadcast the first part of a two-part programme on saturated fat and cholesterol. The programme, presented by Dr Maryanne Demasi, is similar in several ways to $TATIN NATION (in structure, style of music, use of imagery, and some specific content).

It is immensely satisfying to see a national broadcaster finally picking up this issue and to see the message reaching a wider audience!

Towards the end of last year I corresponded with Dr Maryanne Demasi and she purchased a copy of $TATIN NATION. However, since then I had not received any further correspondance and I was not informed that ABC planned to make their own programme. I did try to follow-up with Dr Maryanne Demasi earlier this year, but I didn't receive a response. I found out about this programme this morning (after it was aired) from a post on twitter. Unfortunately, although $TATIN NATION has obviously influenced the ABC programme, ABC have not acknowledged this in their credits.

This is an example of the cut-throat world of corporate media and is yet another reason why independent film production is very close to impossible to sustain. 

The ABC programme is very good, and I highly recommend everyone to watch it. However, what is now needed is a proper explanation for the real causes of heart disease. I have been researching this in much more detail during the last few months and have become aware of some surprising results.

We already know that heart disease is an inflammatory condition and that excess sugar consumption is a major factor, however, there is certainly more to it than that. I believe that we now have a coherent alternative explanation for the real causes of heart disease. This new theory, in some ways, unites the different nutritional schools of thought. 

In addition, I want to look at the other so called risk factors for heart disease and the other common medications that people take for 'prevention'.

For more details of $TATIN NATION part 2, please click here:


You can watch the ABC programme directly from their website at the link below, and they also have a number of useful free downloads associated with the programme: