How statins help prevent heart disease

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No matter your age, it’s never too late to show your heart some love. There are many healthy lifestyle choices you can make today to lower your risk of developing heart disease. 

High cholesterol, high blood pressure, diabetes and heart conditions are all factors that can greatly increase your risk of heart disease. If you have any of these factors, 1 healthy lifestyle choice you can make is talking to your prescriber about statins

Statins and how they work

Statins are prescription medications that work to lower bad (low-density lipoprotein) cholesterol and raise good (high-density lipoprotein) cholesterol by blocking an enzyme your body uses to make cholesterol.¹ As an added benefit, they can slow plaque buildup in your arteries and keep those arteries healthy²—and even reduce the risk of certain blood clots.³ 

Some common statins include atorvastatin, simvastatin and pravastatin.³ If your prescriber already prescribed one of these or another statin for you, you can fill your prescription at CenterWell Pharmacy®, or another pharmacy in your plan’s network.

However, that’s not all there is to know about managing heart disease.

Know more about your risk factors

Unfortunately, some risk factors for heart disease are unavoidable. You may be at greater risk if you’re a man, older than 65, are part of a group impacted by economic or social issues or have a family history of heart disease.

However, many risk factors can be controlled—and many of these are the leading contributors to heart disease. Fortunately, there’s plenty you can do to reduce these risks and achieve your best health.

The top risk factors are:

  • High blood pressure
  • High cholesterol
  • Tobacco use or smoking

You may also have an increased risk if you have diabetes, drink alcohol, aren’t physically active or aren’t maintaining a healthy weight. 

Start these healthy habits today

Making healthy choices and positive changes can take some effort, but the payoff is worth it. In addition to taking statins to manage your cholesterol, you can:

  1. Eat a healthy diet. Fresh fruits, vegetables and whole grains give your body the nutrients it needs and help control cholesterol, blood pressure, weight and diabetes. Other heart-healthy foods include poultry, fish, legumes, nuts and cooking oils rich in healthy fats—like canola or olive oil.
  2. Maintain a healthy weight. Your doctor can help you determine your healthy weight. Then, you can work toward this goal with diet and exercise. Even reducing your weight by 3% or 5% can help!
  3. Get active. It’s recommended that adults get at least 2.5 hours of moderate exercise per week, such as brisk walking, or 75 minutes of vigorous exercise, like jogging or running.
  4. Quit smoking. Smoking cigarettes greatly increases your risk for heart disease. Your doctor may be able to suggest ways to help you quit. 
  5. Limit your alcohol intake. Drinking too much alcohol can raise your blood pressure, give you an irregular heartbeat or lead to other issues. It’s recommended that men have no more than 2 drinks per day and women no more than 1 per day.

Take the next step

While you’re starting those healthy habits, take another important step and ask your prescriber about statins. If they prescribe you a statin, fill it at CenterWell Pharmacy, or another pharmacy in your plan’s network.

This material is provided for informational use only and should not be construed as medical advice or used in place of consulting a licensed medical professional. You should consult with your doctor to determine what is right for you.


  1. Statins,”, last accessed Jan. 16, 2024. 
  2. Statins,” U.S. National Library of Medicine, last accessed Jan. 16, 2024. 
  3. Statins: Are these cholesterol-lowering drugs right for you?” Mayo Clinic, last accessed Jan. 16, 2024. 
  4. Understand Your Risks to Prevent a Heart Attack,” American Heart Association, last accessed Jan. 16, 2024.

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