Statin Drugs -- What You Should Know

When and How to Take Statins

Some general considerations to keep in mind regarding statin drugs include the following:
 
  • Statins come in tablet or capsule form. They are taken once or twice a day, depending on the particular statin.
     
  • Short-acting statins must be taken in the evening (near bedtime), while long-acting statins can be taken at any time of the day. Either way, make sure to take your dose at the same time each day.
     
  • Some statins can be taken either with or without food, while others must be taken with food.
     
  • For these medications to work properly, they must be taken as prescribed.
     

Why Take Statins in the Evening?

Many statins (but not all) must be taken in the evening. The liver produces the most cholesterol in the middle of the night (in the early morning hours). Therefore, it is best to take the short-acting statin drugs in the evening, as taking them early in the day would decrease their effectiveness. This advice applies to the following medications:
 
Longer-acting statins can be taken at any time of the day, although you should take them consistently at the same time each day. These longer-acting medications include:
 
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