Obesity causes UK to become statin capital of Europe

It is thought that rising levels of obesity are the cause of Britain being labelled as the statin capital of Europe, after it was discovered that doctors in the UK prescribed the drug more than any other country in the continent.

The Health at a Glance 2013 report also found that around eight million British citizens are now prescribed the drug compared with just five million in 2003, at a cost of about 10p per patient per day.

According to dailymail.co.uk, statins can cause side effects in one in five patients including muscle pain, cataracts, memory disturbance and diabetes.

Some GPs are concerned in light of this news, that some healthcare professionals could be prescribing statins as a quick and easy solution to the problem of high cholesterol, rather than encouraging patients to adopt a healthier lifestyle.

Professor Sir Roger Boyle, Government heart tsar from 2000 to 2011 told telegraph.co.uk that he was worried that doctors were taking a blanket approach with their patients rather than treating the individual cases effectively.

Professor Boyle said: "The question is whether we are effectively targeting the statins accurately. I would like to see a rather more rigorous approach - rather than them being offered to the 'worried well' and giving them to people because they are 50, or 55, without a proper risk assessment."