FDA urges patients to take contaminated blood pressure drugs that raise cancer risk

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(NaturalHealth365) Near the end of 2018, we reported on several major drug recalls spearheaded by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Included in the recall were contaminated batches of blood pressure medications that tested positive for cancer causing substances.

Now, in a purely head-scratching moment, the FDA appears to be backpedaling on their prior warnings. They recently released an “updated” list of the recalled antihypertensive drugs.  Are these drugs now clear of contamination?

Actually, the answer is no!  It appears that the FDA – a so-called government ‘health’ agency – simply believes that taking contaminated drugs is safer than taking none at all.

Drug shortage?  No problem – take these contaminated blood pressure drugs anyway, says FDA

Of the 1 in 3 people in the U.S. living with hypertension, most are instructed by their conventional doctors to take drugs called antihypertensives – to supposedly reduce the risk of heart disease.

Antihypertensive drugs come with plenty of unpleasant side effects in their own right, including dizziness, diarrhea, and erectile dysfunction. But in a few notorious recalls last year, the FDA acknowledged that something went seriously amiss in the manufacturing of certain batches containing valsartan, irbesartan and losartan.

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Essentially, samples of these drugs tested positive for carcinogenic contaminants, including N-Nitrosodiethylamine (NDEA), N-nitrosodimethylamine (NDMA), and most recently N-Nitroso-N-methyl-4-aminobutyric acid (NMBA).

To be clear, these contaminants are NOT supposed to be in your medications!  They have been shown to cause cancer in animal models.

Now, due to an apparent drug shortage, the FDA has decided to sidestep their own recommendations by bumping up the “upper tolerable limit” of these cancer-causing contaminants – at least until drug manufacturers can pump out a fresh new supply (hopefully these won’t be contaminated, too).  In the meantime, patients are being urged to continue taking their prescription medications…even if they are still on the recall list. 

Their argument?  The risks associated with not taking blood pressure lowering drugs outweigh the potential increased cancer risk.

We’re a bit concerned by this reasoning, to say the least. While we acknowledge that nobody should abruptly stop taking medications without the supervision and involvement of their physician, it seems so short-sighted to suggest that contaminated drugs are ‘good‘ for you.

Worried about hypertension – and antihypertensive drugs?  Try these 6 ways to reduce your risk of cardiovascular disease

If left untreated, hypertension can increase your risk for heart attack and stroke. But medications that lower blood pressure aren’t the only solution to this so-called “silent killer.”

If you have concerns about hypertension and are looking for ways to help yourself without being dependent on potentially harmful drugs, be sure to employ these six natural methods:

  1. Consume foods that are rich in nutrients that are good for your cardiovascular system. This includes magnesium, potassium, and lots of antioxidants like vitamin C.  You can find these nutrients in foods like leafy green veggies, bananas, berries, and nuts and seeds.
  2. Exercise regularly. Aim for at least 30 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise most days of the week.
  3. Reduce stress. Holistic therapies like acupuncture, deep breathing exercises, and meditation are instrumental.
  4. Cut out refined carbohydrates and sugar. Research strongly links sweet (processed) junk food with hypertension.
  5. Lose excess body weight. Even just a 5% decrease can make significant improvement in your blood pressure.
  6. Add natural heart healthy supplements. Stars include fish oil (which fights inflammation) and aged garlic extract (which has been shown to lower blood pressure and improve other elements of cardiovascular health).

And as a bonus – stop smoking!  Cigarette smoke damages blood vessels and, like hypertension, increases the risk of heart disease.

Sources for this article include:

Dailymail.co.uk
FDA.gov
Forbes.com
NaturalHealth365.com
MedicalNewsToday.com