What’s Next? Starting Children on Drugs the Moment They’re Born?

November 29, 2011
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Childrens-drugs

That seems to be the path a new recommendation is putting us on.

An expert panel appointed by the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute, and endorsed by the American Academy of Pediatrics, is now urging cholesterol screening for all children between ages 9 and 11—before puberty, when cholesterol temporarily dips—and again between ages 17 and 21. News accounts discuss a family who put their daughter on cholesterol-lowering medicines when she was 5 (“that gives me hope that she’ll be healthy”) and a doctor at Johns Hopkins who thinks his 12-year-old son should be tested “because he has a cousin with very high ‘bad’ cholesterol.”

What is “bad” cholesterol, anyway? Conventional medicine says HDL cholesterol is good, and LDL is bad. But scientists at Texas A&M University have found that LDL cholesterol is actually needed by the body to build new muscle—a finding that is particularly important both for kids and for the rest of us as we get older and lose muscle more rapidly. It also helps get vitamin D around our body.

Moreover, as we reported last year, people with high cholesterol live the longest. Dr. Harlan Krumholz of Yale’s Department of Cardiovascular Medicine found that old people with low cholesterol died twice as often from a heart attack as did old people with high cholesterol. Many studies have found that low cholesterol is in one respect or another worse than high cholesterol. A review of nineteen large studies of more than 68,000 deaths by the Division of Epidemiology at the University of Minnesota found that low cholesterol predicted an increased risk of dying from gastrointestinal and respiratory diseases.

But even if you buy into the false dichotomy of good vs. bad cholesterol, the statin drugs that are routinely prescribed are extremely dangerous for people of all ages—and even more dangerous for children. Consider the evidence:

  • A recent study shows that the statin drug simvastatin, which the government is advocating we take to lower cholesterol levels, actually weakens our immune system and makes it difficult to fight off bacterial infections.
  • Italian scientists found that the drug, sold under the names Zocor and Simvacor, hinders the ability of the body’s immune cells to kill pathogens, and increases the production of cytokines, which trigger and sustain inflammation.
  • The Wall Street Journal noted that statins like Lipitor make some patients, most of them women, unable to concentrate or remember words.
  • Duane Graveline, MD, former NASA astronaut and scientist, demonstrated the link between statin drugs and muscle and neurological problems, including memory loss and Lou Gehrig’s Disease, in his book Statin Drug Side Effects.
  • Other documented side effects include nerve damage, muscle damage (just what kids need, when their muscles are growing most rapidly!), liver enzyme derangement, and in some cases even kidney failure.
  • Dr. Joseph Mercola notes a number of other side effects of statins, which he calls “some of the most dangerous drugs on the market”: blood glucose elevation, tendon problems, anemia, acidosis, cataracts, and sexual dysfunction.

It’s not just statin drugs that are harmful. Many common blood-pressure lowering drugs have serious side effects, too: ACE inhibitors lead to kidney failure, Beta-blockers can cause dizziness and impotence, and calcium channel blockers can increase risk of heart attack. Yet researchers recently recommended that blood-pressure lowering drugs be given to everyone, regardless of actual blood pressure level! Will they be starting children on these too?

The good news is that every single one of these problems can be fixed entirely through diet. In a recent article, Dr. Mercola stated that the Paleo diet can be very effective for reducing blood pressure, cholesterol and triglyceride levels—more effective, in fact, than a statin drug—allowing people to achieve a thirty-point drop in cholesterol in just two weeks.

Dr. Stephanie Seneff explains that when you eat a diet high in fructose and other sugars, it overtaxes your liver—which can’t properly make cholesterol while simultaneously processing fructose. As a result, the fructose gets turned into fat, and you end up with impaired cholesterol formation because of your overtaxed liver, which can eventually lead to a cholesterol- and cholesterol sulfate deficiency. At that point, your body begins to form arterial plaque to compensate for this deficiency, because your platelets can produce the cholesterol sulfate your heart and brain needs within that plaque. It’s a sort of backup mechanism to maintain proper heart- and brain function.

Unfortunately, Dr. Mercola notes, it’s not an ideal backup mechanism, because arterial plaque also increases your risk for heart and vascular disease. Simply cutting fructose and most grains from your diet effectively eliminates one of the underlying causes of a number of health problems.

Sadly, our culture loves the myth of a pill to cure all ills—which is one reason the number of accidental drug poisonings among children aged 5 and under grew by 22% between 2001 and 2008, according to The Journal of Pediatrics. Prescription drug use by both adults and children is on the rise, and there are simply more bottles of pills in the home—childproof caps are a poor deterrent for a curious child. The biggest culprits were opioid drugs for pain relief, like oxycodone and codeine; sedatives, like muscle relaxers and sleep aids; and prescription heart drugs.

20 Responses to “What’s Next? Starting Children on Drugs the Moment They’re Born?”

  1. Lou says:

    When you consider the VITAL importance of cholesterol, sunshine and vitamin D and then consider the ATTACK all of these vital nutrients are under by Big Med, Big Pharma and Big Government a chill should course through your body. Do we have medical problems in the USA? You bet we do. We have ENGINEERED medical problems.

    Cholesterol is Required for Hundreds of Body Functions

    “Cholesterol is vital to proper neurological function. It plays a key role in the formation of memory and the uptake of hormones in the brain, including serotonin, the body’s feel-good chemical. When cholesterol levels drop too low, the serotonin receptors cannot work. Cholesterol is the main organic molecule in the brain, constituting over half the dry weight of the cerebral cortex.” Sally Fallon and Mary G. Enig, PhD

    You require cholesterol for many vital functions. Cholesterol is required to produce vitamin D, steroid and sex hormones; for healthy cell membranes, skin, digestion and central nervous system. Your body transports cholesterol by putting it in a packet. LDL is the Low-Density Lipoprotein packet your body uses to distribute recently obtained EFAs (See EFA Protocol) other fats and cholesterol. Your HDL (See HDL Protocol) packets move expended cholesterol and other lipids to your liver for disposition. A high HDL level will tend to keep your risk of heart disease low. As you see when examining the LDL protocol Oxidized LDL is a problem and we must keep our antioxidant levels high to prevent this. But please remember ANYTHING OXIDIZED is a problem. Our constant job is to make sure NOTHING in our body except the bad guys oxidizes. Our body does use oxidation as a highly targeted tool to kill pathogens.

    Doctor Stephanie Seneff’s Sulfur Theory of Heart and Brain Disease

    “In this way [sun exposure], your skin will produce cholesterol sulfate, which will then flow freely through the blood—not packaged up inside LDL—and therefore your liver doesn’t have to make so much LDL. So the LDL goes down. In fact… there is a complete inverse relationship between sunlight and cardiovascular disease – the more sunlight, the less cardiovascular disease.” Doctor Stephanie Seneff PhD

    “Heart disease, I think, is a cholesterol deficiency problem, and in particular a cholesterol sulfate deficiency problem…” Doctor Stephanie Seneff PhD

    “They take in sulfate, and they produce cholesterol sulfate in the plaque. The sulfate actually comes from homocysteine. Homocysteine is a source of sulfate. So everything is there and the intent is to produce cholesterol sulfate and it’s done in the arteries feeding the heart, because it’s the heart that needs the cholesterol sulfate. If [cholesterol sulfate is not produced]… you end up with heart failure.” Doctor Stephanie Seneff PhD

    “As a quick summary, when you expose your skin to sunshine, your skin synthesizes vitamin D3 sulfate. This form of vitamin D is water soluble, unlike oral vitamin D3 supplements, which is unsulfated. The water-soluble form can travel freely in your bloodstream, whereas the unsulfated form needs LDL (the so-called “bad” cholesterol) as a vehicle of transport. Her suspicion is that the oral non-sulfated form of vitamin D may not provide all of the same benefits as the vitamin D created in your skin from sun exposure, because it cannot be converted to vitamin D sulfate. I believe this is a very compelling reason to really make a concerted effort to get most of your vitamin D requirements from exposure to sunshine, or by using a safe tanning bed (one with electronic ballasts rather than magnetic ballasts, to avoid unnecessary exposure to EMF fields). Safe tanning beds also have less of the dangerous UVA than sunlight, while unsafe ones have more UVA than sunlight. If neither of these are feasible options, then you should take an oral vitamin D3 supplement.” Doctor Mercola speaking on the work of Doctor Stephanie Seneff

    “In summary, when you eat a diet high in fructose and other sugars, it over-taxes your liver as it cannot properly make cholesterol while simultaneously processing fructose (which it turns into fat). As a result, you end up with impaired cholesterol formation, which can eventually lead to a cholesterol- and cholesterol sulfate deficiency. At that point, your body begins to form arterial plaque to compensate for this deficiency, because your platelets can produce the cholesterol sulfate your heart and brain needs within that plaque. It’s a sort of backup mechanism to maintain proper heart- and brain function.” Doctor Joseph Mercola MD commenting on the cholesterol work of Doctor Stephanie Seneff

    Doctor Stephanie Seneff PhD believes your heart and brain BOTH require cholesterol sulfate to function. This cholesterol sulfate is created by sunshine on your skin or in your blood stream in arterial plaque.

    The aortic artery, feeding blood into your heart is often the site of arterial plaque. IMO this indicates you may not be getting enough sun and-or may have excess homocysteine in your blood.

    The carotid artery, feeding blood into your brain is often the site of arterial plaque. IMO this indicates you may not be getting enough sun and-or may have excess homocysteine in your blood.

    Some sulfur is obtained from cysteine resulting from the converted homocysteine. If the homocysteine is not converted this may result in your heart and-or brain running low on the critical cholesterol sulfate.

    Low Cholesterol Dangers

    “I always had believed that cholesterol is a very, very important nutrient, Cholesterol is to animals as chlorophyll is to plants. It basically gives us mobility – the ability to move and it gives the nervous system the ability to think.” Doctor Stephanie Seneff PhD

    ie. Below 200 Total Cholesterol with 50 HDL

    Raises your Risk of Death for those over 60

    Can make CVD worse

    Can trigger Hemorrhagic Stroke

    Can Raise Your Cancer Risk

    Impairs Brain Function

    Lowers Your Bodies Total ORAC load

    Memory Loss

    Slower Healing

    Linked to Depression

    Linked to Suicide

    Linked to Alzheimer’s

    Linked to Aggression

    Raises Your Risk of Infection including flu

    Raises Your Risk of early death from AIDS

    Raises Your Neurotoxin and Endotoxin loads

    Lowers Your Immune System Function including defense against AIDS

    Lowers Your Stress overload Threshold

    Can Reduce Your Sex Drive and Capacity

    http://healthyprotocols.com/2_cholesterol.htm

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  2. Ruth Yacko says:

    I believe in large part that all the problems with drug addiction have to do with influence by Big Pharma’s not so subtle suggestion that we have some disease or problem that needs a pill to “feel better” or “cure” any and all conditions.

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  3. Terri says:

    Our government and Big Pharma have just lost their minds.

    I would bank on the fact that their own children are not subjected to these types of drugs, they know better.

    By the way, I recently read an article that Librium is being considered to be added to the cancer causing Flouride in our drinking water. This will keep us all calm and not upset about how our world is being ruined at the moment.

    I believe there is a movement happening right now, to thin the herd down, too many people on this planet.

    We have chemicals being sprayed in the air above us to drift down into our water, soil, onto children in playgrounds and animals in fields. Toxic water, GMO foods, FDA looking to take away supplements in favor or medications with side effects….

    Things are getting far too out of control. This must be stopped!

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  4. Amy says:

    It’s not true that people with low cholesterol die as often or more that people with high cholesterol…unless the “low” cholesterol is defined as the being on the low end of the “normal” range of cholesterol considered normal by US physicians. In fact, it is healthier for your cholesterol to be below “normal”. Read the China Study, consult PCRM and nutritionfacts.org.

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  5. Sandi says:

    I just received an email about a drug given to inmates so they can be put in the gas chamber and Psycologically handle their own death.
    Don’t you think this is all a bit experimental…..and how does this all get FDA approval when they are concerned about natural food supplements.
    The prioities need to be changed alot.
    Infants don’t need their arteries unclogged. How rediculous.

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  6. Robert Cruder says:

    This is not a condemnation of conventional medicine but rather a crusade by one medical specialty to prevent or cure its target without concern that it might contribute to other targets.

    Statins appear to have some life-extending power as antioxidants and antiinflammatories beyond cholesterol reduction. One should not base an anti-statin argument entirely on desirability of any cholesterol level or on alternate ways that it might be controlled.

    At the same time, we know that total mortality is lowest at a cholesterol reading of 200-210 and cardiovascular deaths continue to drop as cholesterol is reduced below 150. It is obvious that other disease processes are increasing. The optimal level for an individual depends on his personal disease risk factors.

    With that said, this article confabulates too many unrelated sources with no common thread beyond “medicine be bad”.

    For example, high glucose input leads to high insulin which upregulates cholesterol production. Consuming fructose instead of glucose reduces insulin which reduces cholesterol but has other negative metabolic effects. Even with that, there are few potential dietary sources of pure fructose. All common sugars (including HF corn) have about 50% dextrose and about 50% fructose with no measurable metabolic differences. Discussing the effects of pure fructose outside of contrived laboratory studies damages the article’s credibility. Would you not as a result promote the original corn syrup, malto-dextrin or even corn starch all of which become pure dextrose with no fructose after digestion?

    There is also the error of over-generalization. Just because some people have high cholesterol due to dietary choices, that does not mean that all people have high cholesterol for that reason or that statins are inappropriate for everyone. Just because some people have poorer muscle growth with lower cholesterol does not mean that the Pima people do not develop atherosclerotic impotence in their teens and do not benefit from drugs. That kind of generalization fatally damages not just the article but many of the previous comments.

    Let’s leave statins for a moment and discuss using drugs to modify natural metabolism in general and that of children in particular.

    Human beings have evolved metabolic compromises that make us fertile at an earlier age which helped us to outbreed competing strains. Those same compromises program us to age faster and die sooner. Let me repeat that it is “natural” to die.

    I would prefer to be less fertile and live longer. Given that natural metabolism opposes that, I do not consider “natural” to be sacred and I do favor pharmaceutical intervention.

    On the other hand, some of these children that are being medicated have genetic defects that would otherwise cull them before they reproduced. It would be better for the gene pool that they die early without intervention. Some of the responses above raise my hopes in that regard.

    Let’s get beyond “medicine be bad” and discuss some real science.

       0 likes

    • Lou says:

      “Let’s get beyond “medicine be bad” and discuss some real science.”

      Toxic drugs are designed, or used to be, for ACUTE problems. Giving toxic drugs for CHRONIC life long problems is patent INSANITY. Anyone suggesting putting a child on anti-cholesterol drugs is physiologically ignorant, a buffoon, a shill or worse. IMO HHS is worse.

      Cholesterol is required for YOUR life

      “Dietary cholesterol contributes to the strength of the intestinal wall and helps babies and children develop a healthy brain and nervous system. Foods that contain cholesterol also provide many other important nutrients. Only oxidized cholesterol, found in powdered milk and eggs, contributes to heart disease. Powdered milk is added to 1% and 2% milk.” Weston A. Price Foundation

      “There are many herbal preparations on the market for adrenal exhaustion. However, the most important therapeutic measure is to provide your adrenal glands with plenty of dietary cholesterol.” Doctor Natasha Campbell-McBride, MD

      “Of course, statins inhibit the production of cholesterol–they do this very well. Nowhere is the failing of our medical system more evident than in the wholesale acceptance of cholesterol reduction as a way to prevent disease–have all these doctors forgotten what they learned in biochemistry 101 about the many roles of cholesterol in the human biochemistry?” Sally Fallon and Mary G. Enig, PhD

      “Apart from ensuring that fat-soluble vitamins get digested and absorbed properly, cholesterol is the major building block of one of these vitamins: vitamin D. Vitamin D is made from the cholesterol in our skin when it is exposed to sunlight. In those times of the year when there isn’t much sunlight, we can get this vitamin from cholesterol-rich foods: cod liver oil, fish, shellfish, butter, lard and egg yolks. Our recent misguided fears of the sun and avoidance of cholesterol-rich foods have created an epidemic of vitamin D deficiency in the Western world.” Doctor Natasha Campbell-McBride, MD

      “Cholesterol is vital to proper neurological function. It plays a key role in the formation of memory and the uptake of hormones in the brain, including serotonin, the body’s feel-good chemical. When cholesterol levels drop too low, the serotonin receptors cannot work. Cholesterol is the main organic molecule in the brain, constituting over half the dry weight of the cerebral cortex.” Sally Fallon and Mary G. Enig, PhD

      “Did this patient’s health fail as a result of her new eating habits, or was it mere coincidence that her recent health decline followed the adoption of an extremely low-fat, low-cholesterol, low-animal-protein diet? I believe it was the latter and the scientific literature confirms my beliefs. The patient’s reduction in cholesterol and total serum protein had made her vulnerable to bacterial and viral infection by promoting T-cell suppression. This is especially so in the presence of mercury, which has been shown to reduce resistance to viruses, cancer and autoimmune disease. Low levels of cholesterol also make T-cell proliferation more difficult and the excretion of mercury nearly impossible.” Eric Davis DDS

      Your liver manufactures cholesterol. You can also get cholesterol from animals or the animal products you ingest. Every cell in your body also has the ability to make its own cholesterol. That is how important cholesterol is to maintain a healthy body. In many cells, almost half of the cell membrane is made from cholesterol. Different kinds of cells in the body need different amounts of cholesterol, depending on their function and purpose. If the cell is part of a protective barrier, it will have a lot of cholesterol in it to make it strong, sturdy and resistant to any invasion. If a cell or an organelle inside the cell needs to be soft and fluid, it will have less cholesterol in its structure.

      For most of us, lowering the amount of cholesterol we eat will not affect our cholesterol levels, as our livers will just produce more, if we need more. Your body produces the Cholesterol it requires based on MANY factors. For instance if you eat a lot of fat you will produce more of an agent that will help you digest this fat. That agent is Cholesterol which is used to create the fat digesting bile. If you eat a diet completely devoid of cholesterol your body will use the nutrients you eat to create cholesterol!

      http://healthyprotocols.com/2_cholesterol.htm

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  7. Stan says:

    Recently, some idiot actually suggested that adding statin drugs to the drinking water might be a good idea!

       0 likes

  8. Elle says:

    I can’t believe anyone is even considering this. There’s reasonable caution and then there’s dysfunctional, irrational panic. Yes, I realize people are concerned about cholesterol, and they love their children and don’t wish for them to have undetected or untreated health problems. Nevertheless there are limits as to what ailments are a serious concern for a child who cannot yet even tie his or her shoes. Cholesterol screenings for children who are not yet in first grade? I would say that’s about as good an idea as recommending routine colonoscopies for toddlers. Not much chance they really have colon cancer at that age but you have to be sure, don’t you? And don’t worry about the trauma. They’ll get over it. And if they don’t we’ll just give them some xanax…and some prozac…and some klonopin on those anxiety-producing spelling test days…

    What’s even more disturbing to me than the recommendation regarding testing and treating children for cholesterol issues (for no real reason) is the message this gives those children whose parents buy into this idea. Imagine what happens when a child who’s been on statins since age 5 grows up and needs to make health care decisions for him or herself. Will they even consider natural alternatives or other methods of simple, healthy self-care, or are they going to respond to the whole issue on the basis of having taken conventional medicine’s pills all their lives? I can hear the response now. “I’ve been on pills since I was 5 and I’m healthy as a horse. Why do I need to question anything about conventional medicine? The doctor will fix me. I can always trust an M.D. I’ll just rush into the office as soon as I can, and I’ll do whatever he/she tells me and everything will be fine.” I can also imagine the subconscious response. “I’ve never been able to trust my body. Most kids are on Flintstones Chewables at 5. I was being treated for my cholesterol level. Nature cheated me. I can’t trust it. I need prescription chemicals to live.”

    Seriously, conventional medicine is already exercising such ridiculous, needless hegemony over this entire culture it’s ridiculous. I say not another inch; they’ve already taken too many miles. We need to take control of our lives and our children’s well-being out of the hands of M.D.s and the FDA and Big Pharma, and back in our OWN hands where they belong.

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  9. Karin Yates says:

    Well considering Lipitor is presently the top selling/$$ grossing drug on the market, it’s no wonder the drug companies want to start ‘em young.

    And do you think there may be a correlation between the increased use of these drugs and the incidence of pancreatitis and other cancers???

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  10. john says:

    Do any of these people who think it is a good idea to lower cholesterol in CHILDREN have any idea that cholesterol is necessary in building the myelin that help messages transport on neurons? So, children are already being robbed of decent educations because of all the other mindless crap they “teach” and now we want to make it harder for them to learn what they should? Brilliant!

       0 likes

  11. Maxine says:

    So I just want to know when this insanity is going to stop. What is it going to take to reign in the FDA, BigPharma, and every government and multi-national corporate power that seems to be intent on ruining our babies and children to fatten their bottom lines?
    What is it going to take to force them to keep their hands off alternative, natural remedies?
    Do we really need the FDA? Aren’t they supposed to be protecting us from harm?
    How is their track record so far?? And we pay them with our tax dollars… right?
    Usually if I am unhappy with the “service” I receive from an entity, I don’t use their services anymore. I go somewhere else.. or I fire them.
    I think it’s time we fired the FDA.

       0 likes

  12. M.K. Jordan says:

    Thank you ANH again. What is with all these people who think everything should be cured by a pill? I am so glad you state your position with clarity. I have often read cholesterol is good for you but ANH presents the latest nutritional information in an objective way. I have recently been following the paleolithic diet. It makes sense. Just wish conventional medicine did.

       0 likes

  13. Dr. Richard Edlich says:

    I am strongly opposed to giving strong drugs like opiates to young children. There are many non-medication ways to relieve pain without endangering the child’s life.

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  14. AnneOnymous says:

    Who say’s they haven’t already placed this plan in motion? (Starting Children on Drugs the Moment They’re Born).. After all, there’s a point in time (no matter how brief) that nobody see’s the newborn except hospital staff (or those who claim this position).. What can actually go on behind that closed door is potentially frightening.. That we don’t consider our care givers ‘those types’ in reality is only what we presume. What with the recent hype concerning ‘vaccines’ that a large portion of parents are protesting and even refusing to allow their kids from taking, anything is possible concerning our leaders as has been proven through the attempted law they introduced over-riding any parental voice but instead allowing the child to agree (under heavy intimidation from school officials). Again, too much control of our lives!!

       0 likes

    • KAT says:

      Wow! I never thought about that but you may be right. What a scary thought!

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    • Lou says:

      Any parents who do not have their children at home are IMO not thinking things through. Trust is a thing we used to have. They are giving the ubber toxic hep B vaccine to poor newborns whose parents EXPLICITLY told them NOT to poison their child.

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  15. Suzanne says:

    Totally with Dr. Mercola and Dr. Graveline. All these issues can be supported by nutrition and holistic nutrition or orthomolecular medicine preferably. Wake up. It is the MISSING LINK between a method working or not working.

       0 likes

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