Obesity is one of the major risk factors for diabetes. Most recommendations on managing diabetes and reversing blood sugar levels revolve around managing one’s obesity.
Malvika has developed type 2 diabetes in her late thirties and her sister Malika is pre-diabetic. Both young women are severely overweight; Malvika borders on obese. They have high cholesterol despite their young age and have been advised to lose weight in order to get their cholesterol and diabetes under control.
The doctor has prescribed Rosuvastatin for both sisters. Malvika and Malaika have always been curious about how things work, Googling every little thing ever since Google came to India in their teens. They want to know how Rosuvastatin works or specifically what Rosuvastatin does for diabetes.
Moreover, they ask: doesn’t diabetes cause cholesterol and not the other way around? Is the doctor trying to lower their chances of developing cholesterol? But then why is he doing nothing about their diabetes? They have a lot of confusion and a lot of questions with regards to Rosuvastatin for diabetes.
What came first? cholesterol or diabetes?
Yes, it is true that Rosuvastatin is a drug used to lower cholesterol levels and indeed, diabetes does cause higher amounts of cholesterol. However, diabetes is also worsened by the presence of cholesterol. In other words, a vicious cycle is in play.
Diabetics need to make serious efforts to lower the amount of LDL cholesterol in their blood and as time progresses the ideal levels of LDL cholesterol are becoming lower and lower. Currently, it is recommended that diabetics maintain an LDL level of lower than 70mg/dl. However, this extremely low level is hard to achieve and maintain because diabetes causes LDL levels to spike and high LDL levels worsen diabetes and the whole degenerative cycle continues.
The answer, therefore, is seen as Rosuvastatin because it has the ability to bring down LDL levels to the desired 70 mg/dl. diabetic
Before we dive into this vicious cycle, it is important to understand that there are two types of cholesterol: LDL cholesterol or bad cholesterol and HDL cholesterol or good cholesterol.
The good, the bad, and the pancreas
To better understand this vicious cycle it is important to understand that there are two types of cholesterol: LDL cholesterol or bad cholesterol and HDL cholesterol or good cholesterol.
There are also triglycerides, which are the main component in human body fat. Most people know of triglycerides as the criminal behind hardened arteries that in turn cause heart attack and stroke. But what a lot of people don’t know, is that triglycerides are responsible for pancreatitis that is in turn responsible for lowered insulin production which in turn causes higher blood glucose levels and makes people diabetic.
HDL cholesterol is the good cop in this situation, reducing the number of triglycerides and bad cholesterol in your system. This type of cholesterol also promotes the absorption of glucose by certain muscles (which is good and necessary), thus reducing the amount in your bloodstream.
Meanwhile bad guy LDL – by creating walls around your arteries – inhibits the absorption of blood glucose by your muscles and liver and liver. Blood glucose is supposed to in fact go to your muscles and your liver. Your liver retains it for later and your muscles (including your brain) use it as fuel right away.
Rosuvastatin and diabetes
Now that we have wrapped our heads around the various connections between diabetes and the pancreas, triglycerides and the pancreas, good cholesterol, and the pancreas and bad cholesterol and the pancreas, it becomes easier to understand how Rosuvastatin might help diabetes.
Rosuvastatin comes from the family of statins which are drugs that typically lower bad cholesterol. Rosuvastatin is excellent for diabetes because it lowers bad cholesterol and increases good cholesterol levels in the blood.
Side effects of Rosuvastatin for diabetes
Diabetics must always take Rosuvastatin with a doctor’s prescription and attention because it comes with a long list of side effects:
- muscle pain
- memory loss
- higher blood sugar and increased risk of developing non-insulin-dependent diabetes
- type 2 diabetes
- liver damage
Statins are also not recommended for pregnant women and people already suffering from liver trouble.
Most medical practitioners seem to think that the benefits of Rosuvastatin for diabetes far outweigh its ill effects. However, it is important to keep your doctor posted about your side effects as he or she might want to recommend another statin from this family of drugs. The type of statin that you will be prescribed usually depends on your LDL levels, risk level as far as heart disease goes, and tolerance levels. Rosuvastatin is considered to be one of the most potent statins out there.
If you are on Rosuvastatin for diabetes and your doctor has asked you to wait out the side effects, know that the drug is designed to make your (admittedly uncomfortable bordering on miserable) wait worth it by improving your diabetes and heart disease prognosis in the long run.