I had a physical last week & I told my doctor my diet had changed. I've lost weight (now in the "healthy" range), my blood pressure was 120/76, and EKG was "normal". I expected my cholesterol numbers to be up (thanks to reading this forum), but asked her not to panic!
Background: I'm a 55 year old healthy, active female with no health problems. I was on a diet roller coaster for about 30 years, until I finally swore off diets for good about 10 years ago. I focused on eating REAL food (though I was still eating grains, legumes, & low fat). My weight stabilized between 125-130 (I'm only 4'11", so I was technically overweight), but I felt good. It was around this time that my cholesterol was high (I think around 270). I was able to get the numbers down the CW way, but the total number always remained borderline high. My doctor did not suggest statins at that time.
I've been eating Primal style for about 6 months & weigh 118 pounds. Here are the results:
Total cholesterol: 289 (of course doctor wants it below 200)
LDL: 174 (she wants it below 130)
All other tests were normal (Vitamin D levels, blood sugar, etc). I don't have the report, the nurse read the results over the phone. She wants me to cut out saturated fat & come back in 3 months. If the numbers aren't lower she will discuss medication. Of course, this is what I expected she would say.
I'm willing to tweak a few things in my diet during the next 3 months. I can live without bacon (& pork in general), I can leave the cream out of my coffee, I will consider giving up cheese. I will eat more plants (I'm a CSA member & get a box of local, organic vegetables/fruit each week).
I will continue to eat eggs & cook with ghee (I make from Kerrygold butter).
The last time my cholesterol was below 200, I was an underweight, overtrained, vegetarian who felt like shit! If the numbers are still high after 3 months, I will ask about particle size (I feel certain the increase in LDL is the fluffy stuff).
From reading this forum & others, I'd say my numbers look pretty good. I certainly feel good (that's why I don't want to change too much).
I think you are on track. If they tell you it's saturated fat driving LDL up, tell them to get with the times. Taking drugs due to tests results like yours would be tragic.
Wouldn't Omega 3's lower LDL? I do 6 a day. LDL is 66, but there are a lot of variables.
I wouldn't change your diet based on those results. Your LDL is likely pattern A (large, fluffy, benign particles) as opposed to VLDL (smaller, more dense, more prone to oxidation). You can get a VAP or NMR test to determine the percentage of your LDL that falls into each type, but I would bet that it's almost all pattern A.
Also, that LDL number is almost certainly calculated and not measured. The formula for calculating LDL is often inaccurate when triglycerides are also low.
Most importantly, lipoprotein numbers are a poor indicator of cardiovascular risk. I forget the exact number, but I'm pretty sure that one study found that the majority of heart attack victims had "normal" total cholesterol and many were even in the low bracket.
No advice but your numbers and overall health are another nail in the Lipid Hypothesis coffin.
Thanks for your responses. I was just a little disappointed that my doctor (who I like otherwise) isn't looking at the big picture. I believe my risk for heart disease is very low & no way I need to take statins.
I will be prepared with what tests to ask for when I follow up in 3 months.
Your trigs are so low that measuring LDL using an equation is not accurate. You need a VAP to measure LDL direct and figure out if it is Pattern A. Get a VAP then show your Doc the amazing results. Definitely get a CRP too. All good advice and odds are you will outlive your Doc.
ThisYour trigs are so low that measuring LDL using an equation is not accurate. You need a VAP to measure LDL direct and figure out if it is Pattern A. Get a VAP then show your Doc the amazing results. Definitely get a CRP too. All good advice and odds are you will outlive your Doc.
Try to get more copper in your diet. I use cashews and sesame seeds. Sesame seeds are benign and can be put on broccoli and shrimp until the end of days, but don't roast them as that will oxidize the o6 that are in them and mess up your numbers (and your body) even more. Stabby has mentioned in a few threads that those of us who utilize this WOE can get higher LDL numbers due to low copper.
Most CW followers get enough copper in their grains.
People too weak to follow their own dreams will always try to discourage others.
Just a little more data on your likely LDL pattern. Your TRIG:HDL ratio is below the recommendation of 2.0, and well below the 1.0 range. Under 1.0, the LDL pattern is almost guaranteed to be pattern A, and I would simply not worry about it. I wouldn't give up or cut back on bacon. And I wouldn't take a statin. I hope my results are that good when I have my physical later this year.
Like someone else said, perhaps you need a new doctor.