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  • Six months to shape up or Dr. is threatening meds

    OK, so I went to my yearly physical yesterday (I'm 43 yrs. old) and my cholesterol is creeping up (226 total, 36 HDL, 159.2 LDL) and my Glucose, his main concern, is also creeping up (108, which he calls pre-diabetic).
    I just finished the Primal Blueprint last night and have read many articles on this site, so I know what the answer is going to be...but I guess I'm just looking for comfort in my specific case, so that's why I'm on the forum.
    I have six months to 'shape up' or the Dr. is threatening meds, due to my family history of high BP and cholesterol. If I do the Primal lifestyle, which I intend to do, is six months enough time to get my bloodwork in line? I know health is more than bloodwork but I don't want to get into a scrap in my Dr.s office because my glucose is still over 100.
    I intend to be one of the Success Stories on this forum one day.
    thanks!

  • #2
    For the diabetes side, study: Blood Sugar 101
    __________________________
    age 56, type 2 diabetes, swimmer
    low carb since 2006 thanks to Jenny, primal since Jan. 2012

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    • #3
      Depends how strict you are in large part I would think. Robb Wolff book has a sample improvement section (pretend person who changes lifestyle) which has some specific numbers he said are fairly typical--sorry don't have pages etc. as I am at work.

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      • #4
        All these studies showed statistically significant benefits in less than 3 months. One even shows substantial benefits in 10 days.

        Frassetto LA, Schloetter M, Mietus-Synder M, Morris RC, Jr., Sebastian A: Metabolic and physiologic improvements from consuming a paleolithic, hunter-gatherer type diet. Eur J Clin Nutr 2009.

        Jönsson T, Granfeldt Y, Ahrén B, Branell UC, Pålsson G, Hansson A, Söderström M, Lindeberg S. Beneficial effects of a Paleolithic diet on cardiovascular risk factors in type 2 diabetes: a randomized cross-over pilot study. Cardiovasc Diabetol. 2009;8:35

        Lindeberg S, Jonsson T, Granfeldt Y, Borgstrand E, Soffman J, Sjostrom K, Ahren B: A Palaeolithic diet improves glucose tolerance more than a Mediterranean-like diet in individuals with ischaemic heart disease. Diabetologia 2007, 50(9):1795-1807.

        Osterdahl M, Kocturk T, Koochek A, Wandell PE: Effects of a short-term intervention with a paleolithic diet in healthy volunteers. Eur J Clin Nutr 2008, 62(5):682-685.

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        • #5
          Try intermittent fasting. But first you might try the 6 week leptin reset- high protein and no snacks for 6 weeks.

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          • #6
            Did you read this article yet? And more importantly, has your Dr. seen it?
            Sandra
            *My obligatory intro

            There are no cheat days. There are days when you eat primal and days you don't. As soon as you label a day a cheat day, you're on a diet. Don't be on a diet. ~~ Fernaldo

            DAINTY CAN KISS MY PRIMAL BACKSIDE. ~~ Crabcakes

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            • #7
              Yes, if you stick to it pretty strictly 6 months is more than enough time to get your numbers better. They aren't that bad to start with. I was 44 when I started and went from 274 lbs to 232 lbs in six months, Sept to March. Even had Thanksgiving in there. I'm not due to get new blood work numbers until April. But, my wife's cholesterol went from 150 to 110 in about 4 months. and my BP has dropped about 20 points each number.

              I would go for a couple of months before starting Intermittent Fasting.

              Say NO to drugs!!! Good luck on your journey.

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              • #8
                Sure six months is enough time! At the very least positive health trends in that time should give you enough peace of mind that your new life style choices are working for you. Just get started and you will do just fine!

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                • #9
                  A total Cholesterol of 226 would make me really happy. Mine was 268 last time they looked and I haven't had another test yet. Anyway, the common occurrence on an eating plan like this, or on a carbohydrate restricted whole food diet, is that your triglycerides drop quickly, your HDL improves and your LDL usually looks worse than it is due to the low triglycerides and the miscalculation that occurs (because LDL is never directly measured.) Usually the LDL particle size increases and most doctors are not even aware that there are different particle sizes. Larger particles are a sign of health. Since most doctors are a little ignorant and don't appreciate receiving information from their patients, especially ones who get info from the Internet, it may not be possible to make your doctor happy and you may have to ignore him or find a smarter doctor. Good luck.
                  Female, 5'3", 50, Max squat: 202.5lbs. Max deadlift: 225 x 3.

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                  • #10
                    Your doctor cannot MAKE you do anything. If you don't want to take drugs, you don't have to.

                    And in 6 months' time, if you are trending in the right direction, even if you are not where your doctor wants you to be yet, you can still tell him, "Look, what I'm doing is helping. I want to keep doing it a while longer and see where it takes me before I resort to prescriptions".

                    Your health is up to YOU. He's there for diagnosis and advice, but decisions are ultimately yours.
                    Today I will: Eat food, not poison. Plan for success, not settle for failure. Live my real life, not a virtual one. Move and grow, not sit and die.

                    My Primal Journal

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                    • #11
                      Yes I've seen and heard all I need to see and hear to know that statin drugs are something I'd NEVER EVER take under any circumstances, PERIOD! Just get your diet in order by eating real food almost always. Do some form of weight training, sprint intervals about once a week and move often. After that who cares what the doctor says?! Your numbers aren't horrible now. Far too many doctors just can't wait to get you on some medication. Instead they should be prescribing a lifestyle that will promote good health and fitness.

                      It is as said above, all up to YOU!

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                      • #12
                        Thanks everyone! I'm weight training already, and I do plan to add sprints and low-level cardio as I get into this, and as I begin the Primal diet (next week, I have to figure out what the heck to put on my shopping list for this weekend). I have no intentions of getting on statins, that's for sure.
                        thanks again

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                        • #13
                          Low level cardio, just start walking 10 minutes at a time. We have a group at work that walks at 10, 2 and 4, about 1/2 mile around the building. We'll often go walk a couple of miles at lunch too.

                          here is a start on your grocery list
                          pasture raised eggs
                          applewood smoked bacon
                          grass fed beef
                          grass fed pork
                          apples
                          beef jerky
                          almonds
                          organic tomatoes
                          organic broccoli

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                          • #14
                            I think what Uncephalized said bears repeating: your doctor cannot force you to start meds, period. And as others have noted, the PB can and should help impact all these various symptoms (BP, glucose, lipids), but how long it takes will vary depending on the individual and the degree to which you really hew to the plan.

                            Just fill your cart (and plate) with meats and veggies. Meats, including eggs and fish. You're removing toxic, industrial foods and replacing them with nutritious, non-stressor foods (both inflammation and insulin response stressors). Every healthful substitution you make will chip away at the health deficit you've built up. Be vary wary of sneaky sources of vegetable oil (like soybean oil in salad dressings) and HFCS and sugar, which can undo a lot of good work very quickly. And be aware that on your 80/20 splurges, eating fried foods can likewise undo a lot of good work very quickly. Not that you need to be neurotic about food choices, but don't let the idea of occasional food cheats get too far out of hand.

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                            • #15
                              In three months eating primal by A1C went from 7.1 to 5.4 (24% drop) and fasting glucose went from 157 to 93 (41% drop) My overall cholesterol held steady, Triglycerides down and HDL up. You can see the full results here...

                              Some advice...
                              1. Don't obsess about your overall cholesterol number. As long as your Triglycerides are going down, and HDL are going up, you will be in good shape.
                              2. As Triglycerides drop, LDL will rise as a result of the calculation used to estimate LDL. After a few months on the diet, if your DR is still worried, have a VAP test to measure LDL particle size, it should be Pattern A (large and fluffy)
                              3. Avoid Statins at all costs. The evidence that is out there on their benefits is marginal at best for most of the population and the side effects are under reported.
                              4. If you are seeing your lipids improve, and weight is coming off, your DR should relax, if he/she does not then find another DR if possible.

                              Good Luck!
                              SW on 10/1/11: 380lbs.
                              CW 12/13/12: 315lbs. (Was under 300#, added some muscle :-) )
                              GW: 10% B.F. 250lbs. - 275lbs. (6' 4" tall)

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