How To Get Off Statin Drugs | Best Ways To Get Off Them (2022)


Statin medications are highly controversial and I am going to show you How To Get Off Statin Drugs. Statin or Cholesterol lowering medication are the most widely prescribed drugs in the United States and and their potential side effects have become a hot issue. As our understanding of the heart disease story continues to evolve, some have questioned the role statins play in reducing heart disease.

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How To Get Off Statin Drugs By Living A Healthy Lifestyle

  • Step 1: Eat Vegetables (Forks over Knives)
  • Step 2: Monitor Your Body Weight (Don’t Let Yourself Gain Excess Weight)
  • Step 3: Exercise Regularly (Exercise at least 5 times a week)
  • Step 4: Make Sure You Get Enough Sleep (8 – 10 hours is ideal)
  • Step 5: Take Vitamins (Omega-3 and B3)
  • Step 6: Eat Flaxseeds (Good For Heart Health)
  • Step 7: Drink Healthy Fruit Juices And Wine (Pectin & Resveratrol – known to helplower cholesterol)

I advise my patients to see statins, whenever possible, as an Interventional Medication rather than an excuse to keep living an unhealthy lifestyle. It’s my goal to educate patients and to help them transition to a healthy lifestyle that makes statins unnecessary. (Because of genetic factors, this is not always possible). Living statin free presents challenges, of course, but it can be done. So let’s get started.


In this article I am going to answer the some of the common questions pertaining to statin and cholesterol lowering drugs.

  • Why do people take statin medication?
  • What do Statins Do?
  • Are Statins Dangerous?
  • How do statin drugs work?
  • Can you just stop taking statin drugs?
  • How long does it take for a statin to get out of your system?
  • Are there any books on how to control your cholesterol?
  • What are the best ways to get off statin drugs


Despite what the fear-mongers say, your doctor is not in cahoots with the pharmaceutical companies to drain your wallet. The bottom line is that statins work. In the past 10 years there has been a 27% reduction in fatal heart attacks and much of this improvement is due to statins. But, remember statins can often times be used as a short term fix and is not always meant as a permanent regimen.


Statins are medicine in the form of a pill that is prescribed daily to patients who are candidates for heart disease or who have experienced a heart attack and have high or elevated LDL Cholesterol.

  • Statins help to quickly reduce and control LDL levels often referred to as your LDL Cholesterol readings. Once the statin medication is prescribed to a patient, LDL Levels drop by 50% or more.
  • Statins also help raise HDL Cholesterol by up to 15%.
  • Within 2 to 4 weeks after starting a statin treatment, there should be major changes in cholesterol levels.


Statins for most patients should be a temporary fix and not something used long term. Extended use of statins in patients have been known to include the following side effects

For most patients, a change in lifestyle to one that is more healthy can dramatically reduce the need for statins.


Statins are a prescription drug that needs to be monitored by a professional doctor such as a cardiologist who specializes in the heart. Statins work in 2 ways to help patients.

  1. Statins eliminate the body’s ability to produce cholesterol by blocking the enzyme that creates cholesterol. By blocking production, total cholesterol is lowered.
  2. Statins also help the body reabsorb existing cholesterol. Many bodily functions need cholesterol to perform basic activities like digestion of food, absorb vitamins and make hormones. Since statins block the production of cholesterol and your body still needs cholesterol to function, statins help absorb cholesterol that has become plaque in your arteries.

The combination of eliminating the body’s production of cholesterol and the absorption of plaque reduces overall cholesterol and lower chances of a heart attack.

Dr. Chauncey Crandall Heart Health Minute Episode 5 – Statins from Newsmax on Vimeo.


There are 2 points that every person taking statin medication(s) must know and realize:

  • The reasons why you are currently taking a statin medication (Your Physician Should Have Explained Why Your Should Be On Statins)
  • What you need to do before you can stop taking a statin medication.

In generalif you have no known underlying heart disease and have total cholesterol count under 200 or have beenpreviously diagnosed with heart disease and have total cholesterol count under 150, you are probably a good candidate to stop taking statin or cholesterol lowering drugs.

Best advice is to always consult with your physician before stopping.


Once you stop taking Statins, some of drug’s effects will wear off within 24 hours, but other side effects may take weeks or months until the body is fully functioning normally.


I have written several books that discuss how to lower your cholesterol, get off statin drugs and live a healthier life.

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How To Get Off Statin Drugs | Best Ways To Get Off Them (3)


Okay, now that you have a better overview of statins, here are 7 steps to get off statin drugs andhow to get off your cholesterol medication.


  • Step 1: Eat A Plant Based Diet
  • Step 2: Maintain Ideal Body Weight
  • Step 3: Exercise 5 Times A Week (1 hour a day)
  • Step 4: Get Proper Sleep (8 to 10 hours a day)
  • Step 5: Get Your Vitamins (Omega-3 and B3)
  • Step 6: Consume Flaxseeds (Good For Heart Health)
  • Step 7: Drink Juices And Red Wine (Helps you get Pectin & Resveratrol that help lower cholesterol)

1. Eat A Plant Based Diet

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The first step may surprise you because it’s not demanding at all. It’s a step, however, that many never take or fail to sustain. Build a relationship with your physician. Let him/her know that you want to know how to get off statin drugs and where you stand in regard to heart-healthy targets. Then, in consultation with your doctor, put together a game plan for doing so. As I’ve said, this will demand lifestyle modification. Without changing the way you live, there’s no solid reason to get off your statin medication

How To Get Off Statin Drugs | Best Ways To Get Off Them (5)Part of this game plan must be eating a plant-based diet. Depending on a patient’s particular profile, I recommend either the Dean Ornish Heart Disease Reversal Diet or the South Beach Diet. If you have known heart disease, the Ornish diet is better because it most effectively cleanses the system of excess fat. The South Beach Diet is usually for those with risk factors but no known heart disease. This diet allows more latitude and can still get a person to the recommended targets. Although the Ornish Diet puts no restrictions on calorie intake – mainly because it’s hard to consume too many calories eating fruits and vegetables, you’ll need to limit your calories on the South Beach Diet or a Mediterranean diet (another good one). A typical unrestricted diet for the average adult contains about 2,400 calories per day. Aim to keep your calorie intake between 1,500 and 1,800 calories. The lower end is for women; the higher end is for men.

2. Maintain Ideal Body Weight

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Get to and maintain your ideal body weight. One way to judge your ideal body weight is via body mass index (BMI). Your BMI represents the percentage of your total body weight that’s due to fat. It should be under 25. Many health clubs have simple handheld devices that provide a BMI reading. These also can be purchased at any major drug store.

Another way to think about ideal body weight is to remember what you weighed as a senior in high school. How far away are you? At that time your total cholesterol count- unless you had a weight problem then, was probably in the 120s. That’s the range that’s typical in populations without heart disease. So think “high school skinny.” For many of us, that’s a long way to go. You’ll need to approach this target weight, though, to sufficiently change your biochemistry.

3. Exercise 5 Times A Week (1 Hour per Day)

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You need to start exercising five days a week for one hour per day. Walking is generally the best exercise available because it doesn’t place too much stress on the knees, hips, and back. If you like to run, you may want to mix running into your walks, which is how people have been moving ever since civilization began. If you want something more rigorous, then try weight lifting or exercise bands. Tennis, swimming, and ballroom dancing are also good. The invention of golf carts decreased the health value of golf appreciable. But you can still swim or ride a bike!

4. Get Proper Sleep (8 to 10 hours)

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You must get plenty of sleep – much more than our our workaholic culture commonly believes. Not just eight hours a night, but eight to 10 hours on a regular basis. Sleep is the body’s main way of dealing with stress. Specifically, and this might surprise you, lack of sleep results in the liver pumping out excess cholesterol!

Besides sleeping more, it’s important to take additional measures to reduce stress. The greatest of these is recruiting the support of your loved ones. Talk to your wife, husband, or others in your life about your desire to live in a healthy way. Rely on them for the encouragement and accountability you need.
Remember, there are only two ways to reduce your cholesterol: Stop the production of cholesterol in your liver, or stop its absorption in the small intestine. Adding supplements to your diet can help reduce cholesterol, but most people have to be at their targets, eating right, and exercising before supplements can help them stay there. One supplement works through the liver just like a statin – because it is a statin, a natural one. Mevastatin is produced naturally by red rice yeast. You can add red rice yeast to your diet by picking up a container at the grocery or health foods store. Be careful of the provider, however. In the past couple of years there have been problems with red rice yeast produced in China. Suppliers were adding pravastatin to their product to heighten its cholesterol-reducing properties. This posed a health risk as the amount of statin people were taking – unknowingly – varied wildly.

5. Get Your Vitamins (Omega-3 and B3)

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Omega-3 fatty acids from fish oil and vitamin B3 (niacin), remain the champions of natural supplements. (Editor note: discuss the use of niacin with your doctor, as recent research has showed that over use of niacin could in fact be damaging to your heart). Both fish oil and niacin boost HDL, plump up LDL particles, and often times reduce inflammation. Fish oil even has a mild analgesic effect, for which your aching joints will thank you.

6. Flaxseed Is Good For Heart Health

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New evidence is emerging that flaxseed contains three ingredients that aid in maintaining heart health. Flaxseed is rich with the plant form of omega-3 fatty acids, lignans, which contain both plant estrogen and antioxidant qualities, plus soluble and insoluble fiber. Flaxseed seems to help not only with a person’s cholesterol profile but even in maintaining heart rhythm.

7. Juices And Red Wine

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Organic grape juice, apples, and other foods that contain pectin help eliminate cholesterol through the gut. Garlic has a mild effect as well.

A glass of red wine a day, because it contains resveratrol, an antioxidant, also helps maintain heart health. Be careful, though: two or more glasses of red wine a day has been shown to increase cancer risk. In this light, I’d recommend having a glass of red wine no more than 2 or 3 times per week. Wine and other alcoholic beverages also cause triglyceride counts to climb. Oatmeal, oat bran, and other whole grain products can help with a small reduction, about 5 percent, in total cholesterol.

For those with risk factors or established heart disease, the challenges of living statin free in our culture can be daunting. If you take the seven steps I’ve outlined, though, starting with establishing that all-important relationship with your physician, you’ll have the best chance of success. You’ll feel 1,000 times better, too -that I can promise. I certainly hope you conquer your need for statin drugs.

Thank you for reading this heart health tip of the day. To your heart health,

Please continue to read the many articles I provide in my blog. Each article contains valuable life saving information that can help anyone struggling to overcome heart disease. I wish you much success in your pursuit of heart health.

  1. How To Get Off Statin Drugs | Best Ways To Get Off Them (12)

    Ophelia Mooreon August 12, 2017 at 10:04 am

    I believe in the Power of Prayer and I know that God heals today as He did long ago. It is approximately 3:00 a.m., I fell to sleep earlier this evening, by the time I woke it was midnight. I decided I would clean and purge my files to give me more room for recent challenges (from the old school still believe in paper and notes); I ran across an article I downloaded some time ago, 2011 I believe, I started reading it and here I am. I have not been diagnosed with heart disease but I have chronic back pain between my should blades, ringing in my ears, should pain if I sleep on it, suddenly I am sleepy and tired all the time and don’t know why. My statin medicine has been increased to a stronger version. I don’t exercise a lot but I am going to start to walking at lease one hour a day five days a week after actually reading your article in Newsmax, I will also go to the gym. I lost my daughter when she was 16 years of age, at the time I was 33, I am now 67, I don’t believe I have ever gotten over it, for some time I was angry with God and got into drugs for a little more than 10 years but have been clean and sober for more than 23 years now. Have you any suggestions about what I can do to improve my health. I will do less meat and try to eat more veggies and fruit. I know you are busy and I might not hear from you, however, I have a God who is never too busy. My strength comes from my faith, Jesus is real. Thank you for your time. God bless you.

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    Joyce Kopeckon August 22, 2017 at 4:21 pm

    Last week I ordered a free 30-day Supply of Ventricore through an advertisement which I had found on Facebook and according to the information on the site this product was formulated by Dr. Chauncey Crandall. Is it true that Dr. Chauncey Crandall is in fact the formulator of this Ventricore product?
    Sincerely, Joyce Kopeck

  3. How To Get Off Statin Drugs | Best Ways To Get Off Them (14)

    Catherine J. Carteron September 29, 2017 at 1:52 pm

    Thank You So Much, Dr.Chauncey, for taking the time to help people like me Sir, I do Not want to take this drug because it will damage my liver and then I do not want a heart attack. So I must change life style eating habits and your seven steps to healthy living is my beginning.

    Thanks So Much

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    Margareton October 5, 2017 at 4:28 am

    Dear Dr. Chauncey :
    1. You said that statins can “eliminating the body’s production of cholesterol and the absorption of plaque”. I heard that ” plaques ” harden blood vessels and can be calcified. So how does statin absorb
    plagues ???

    2. I stopped taking statins after my cholesterol became less than 200mg. Now, how often should I still have blood test for my cholesterol ???
    Thank yu very, very much……..

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    Betsy Conteon July 6, 2018 at 9:56 pm

    Hello, my husband age 71 was prescribed Zocor, 20 years ago to lower his cholesterol. He has experienced extreme leg cramps throughout its use. Now, he is having a hard time even walking due to muscle cramps, muscle fatigue, and extreme muscle ache. He is afraid to tell his primary care physician; in the back of his mind, he knows that his father died of a heart attack. He thinks Zocor is prevently heart attacks. I have heard from friends who have stopped their statins and their muscle problems are relieved. He thinks I am stupid to tell him to stop his Zocor. What am I to do?

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    Bonnie Bellon August 23, 2018 at 4:13 pm

    My Dr out me on a statin because my cholesterol was over 200. I am not doing well. Every joint and muscle in my body hurts bad Most days it is hard to walk. I have been a walker since 1985 averaging 3 miles a day until recently. This is my favorite form of exerciseI’ve been on the statin since Nov 2017 but just recently started with the joint and muscle pain. Did it take that long for the statin to build up The only other medication I take is Synthroid for hypothroidism. i do not want to be a walking medicine chest. I am 78 years old and do not want to be on medicine that I don’t need and is doing more harm than good. 4 days ago the pain was so bad I stopped taking the statin and the very next day the pain was reduced, but not gone. Can you advise me how to keep my cholesterol in check naturally.

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    Andyon September 4, 2018 at 11:29 am

    I stopped taking simvastatin because it affected my libido, also not happy with the muscular pain I was experiencing, at 66 I intend to restart statins when my libido naturally disappears and if it doesn’t who cares anyway, medication shouldn’t reduce quality of life to that extent unless absolutely necessary.

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    Cathyon October 15, 2018 at 2:20 am

    I can not take prescription statin drugs nor red yeast rice. They give me very bad side effects. I have familia high cholesterol. What do I do? I also do not eat a high cholesterol diet.

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    Mrs. Cristina C. Bartonon December 13, 2018 at 11:18 pm

    I am taking Enlapril 20mg for the 16 yrs now. Many times prescribed me statin but I got side effects of mucsles pain.So I stop taking it.Then when my cholesterol got to 8 point she prescribed me again Atorvastatin. A year now and I always have muscles pain all over my body. I am 69 yrs old. Last week I have my blood test and I got now a 5 point cholesterol level. I eat more vegs and especially fruits like avocado in the morning everyday. And others food that is healthy to have. I would like to stop taking statin because I feel different in my body since I start using it. I have no heart disease problem only high blood pressure which regulate by taking my Enlapril. Can I stop it?

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    Billon January 10, 2019 at 6:03 pm

    Hey dr. would like to know more about the combination of statin drugs, urinary drugs (i.e. Flomax), and Proton Pump Inhibitors.
    You mention eating foods high in B vitamins. How can one absorb B vitamins if the PPI blocks this ability?

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    Magen Davidon January 11, 2019 at 11:46 pm

    If you don’t want to eat statin drugs, stop eating sugar, high frutose corn syrup, and carbohydrates!!
    Sugars make things sticky, inside and outside of the body. Cancer needs sugar to survive. If ya don’t want cancer, don’t give it fuel to thrive. Eat all the organic meat and veggies you want, but “organic” is key.
    My wife HAD Hepatic Carcinoma. All she changed was removing sugar and carbs from her diet, Her liver tests are normal, and my wife is on a health food kick now. The body makes its own sugar, and cholesterol. Stop cooking with Wesson, Crisco, and any other vegetable/ canola oils. Use Olive, coconut, and peanut oils. If you’re going to spend money at the Dr’s office, save the person the grief by taking care of yourselves, merely by eating proper. Some food are an addiction, especially sugar! Watch “The Magic Pill,” and visit Dr. Mercola’s website.
    Thank you Dr. Crandall for your site. I see there is a connection between ALS and Statin drugs. Folks just need to stop eating crap food, and stop listening to TV commercials.

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    Chris Wunschon January 16, 2019 at 7:23 pm

    Or this article.. I was a healthy 34 year old critical care RN of 13 years, when life as I knew it came to an abrupt halt die to unpublished adverse effects on the toxicity to mitochondria. I was hospitalized 28 days, akin to a 90 year old man with end stage Alzheimer’s disease. Brain MRI revealed innumerable lesions scattered throughout my Brain biopsy revealed the lesions to be apoptosis, and electron microscopy revealed mitocjondrial DNA mutations most similar to MELAS.I was to transfer to a nursing home, when a visiting professor began me on a Mitochondrial cocktail with a robust dose of CoQ10, and within 25 hours of starting, I began to be able to recognize my wife and my 2 year old son, my mom and dad and my siblings. I could now communicate the need to use the restroom, instead of soiling myself. I was able to dc home a few days later with aggressive rehab. Extensive neuropsych testing revealed cognitive impairment of sufficient severity to substantially restrict any gainful employment. It is now 16 years later and I continue to have constant muscle pain, frofound fatigue, short term memory impairment. These are not the wonder drugs we were led to believe.

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    Lindaon January 21, 2019 at 5:36 am

    Hi Dr. Chauncey, I am taking statins 4 years now I was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes first I am on 40g Pavastatin a day. I am 58 years old my bones and muscles are very sore and weak all the time I suffer bone pain constantly. I am good at eating the proper food, and I will put in extra effort to exercise when my bones are not sore and allow me. I need to come off statins no history or heart problems. I am a smoker and I have not been successful in my efforts to stop. I am worried about the problem the stats are having on my bones I will end up not been able to do anything.. Any advise would be appreciated thank you Linda

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    Ivanon February 5, 2019 at 4:51 am

    I stopped taking statins when my cholesterol was 151, almost 2 months ago. My personal Dr. adviced to do do for about 6 months, and check my cholesterol again. Now I’m kind if getting a little nervous. I do a lot of physical exercise at least 4 to 5 days per week. What do you advice me? Thank you in advance.

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    Lynnon February 19, 2019 at 7:30 pm

    I had a mini stroke 7 yrs ago. The drs at the hospital put me on a statin that gave me myopathy right away. I stayed on it for a long time then it started to give me a fuzzy brain! I started doing some weird things. So my husband took me to a psychiatrist! He took my drivers lisence away! When I ran out of the statin. A light went off in my brain! Everything came back to me! Now it has been years and I am an normal person again! Fighting to get my drivers license back again!

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