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How do statins work?

November 10, 2019 2 min read

statins don't actually affect the levels of cholesterol in your body.


Instead, it's worth understanding how cholesterol in the body is produced, and why.


Your body is full of receptors for cholesterol levels, called LDLc receptors. Your body uses these to manage the amount of cholesterol in the body, so if they aren't reporting correctly, it causes the food you eat to be processed differently.


Also, like anything related to the body, these receptors can be different from person to person, and one person's response to foods that traditionally raise cholesterol levels can be entirely different to a second persons.


Statins work against this by blocking a specific enzyme in the body, called HMG-CoA-Reductase. This enzyme is what manages the levels of cholesterol in your body, but if your levels aren't correct, then your body might not deal with the cholesterol building up inside your arteries.


Statins give your body an artificial method to block these enzymes. This can cause your body to produce more HDL, which helps to deal with high levels of the bad cholesterol. It can also trick your liver into thinking that it needs to deal with existing levels of cholesterol more effectively.

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