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Member Comments for the Article:
The Keys to Conquering Cholesterol
Do's and Don'ts for a Healthy Heart
9/18/2010 11:34:11 AM
Each year for over 15, my total cholesterol was high ranging from 225 to most recent 255. All the doc's I've seen have told me my LDL/HDL ratio was excellent and made no firm suggestions other than cut back on dairy and take off a few pounds(I am 10 lbs overweight). I've done treadmill and while not excellent, not bad enough to sound alarms. So I ate lots of cheese. That's it! No red meat, other dairy---until my latest check up with a woman cardiologist who said she doesn't believe in ratios. Good thing! As of last week, I now have a stent implanted after an angioplasty showed a 90% blockage. It took all these years, all the male cardiologists to finally find a woman who specializes in women's heart disease to finally save me from a far scarier fate.
my doctor wanted to put me on a cholestorol med. and I said no, my level is 5.7 and said I will lower mine with diet and that's what I'm doing. tracking my fats, sugar's and losing weight. It's not easy but I have enough medications and refuse to take another one. Will see what my level is in 6 mths then reassess the med question is not coming down.
Huh, I'm rather disappointed with this article. But then, it takes MANY years for the public, let alone doctors, to get with it with recent research.
This article has a lot of good advice, but its stance on cholesterol is grossly out of date. You're chiming the anti-cholesterol bell that has been going on for a few decades now, yet it hasn't reduced heart disease in America and obesity is on the rise and has been for a long time. All it's done is driven people from wholesome real foods into the arms of manufactured, processed low-fat/cholesterol alternatives that contribute to obesity.
Elevated cholesterol levels in a person with heart disease does not mean that cholesterol caused the heart disease. That's association, NOT causation. Cholesterol levels can be high for a number of reasons, including the various stresses on the body with an unhealthy lifestyle that contribute to heart disease: smoking, drinking, obesity, being sedentary, processed foods, stress, lack of sleep. Those issues are easier and more affective to address than trying to force down cholesterol down with various methods. Obsession and worry over blood lipid levels is, in itself, unhealthy.
READ UP on alternative studies, please! There is a whole network of researchers, scientists and DOCTORS who do not believe in the myth that cholesterol and saturated fat cause heart disease: THINCS - The International Network Of Cholesterol Skeptics. www.thincs.org/ Look them up, read.
10/20/2009 12:55:39 PM
Hi, Becky I miss your articles they are very great. I was away for a while I am so sorry. I eat a lot of dry beans and peas mix with bulgar wheat and brown rice. I always Have trouble measuring the salt and oil intake because I cook for 4 people. However I been using the right type of oils that you sugested. By the way you look like a trainer in jym. Thank you much.
Fishing and fish farming are going to cause the death of our oceans. Eating fish is awful for the environment (except perhaps fish you've caught yourself), not to mention a crap shoot in terms of toxins. I get my omegas from flax seeds and other sources. Some say they are not as "readily absorbed" as the omegas in fish, but I put flax in smoothies, oatmeal, pancakes, cookies...basically everything I make...so I know I definitely get enough. No gross fish or supplements needed.
Cholesterol, for me, is a simple thing and something that doesn't require a big laundry list of dos and donts. I do not consume any cholesterol. My cholesterol is low. Wow, what a concept.
My triglycerides were 130, and my total cholesterol was 268. My doctor wanted to put me on statin drugs. I didn't want to have to take an expensive drug for the rest of my life, so I did my own research and discovered that 1500mg of Niacin along with flax and vinegar do the job just as well without the expense or the muscle fatigue and other side affects often associated with statins.
I started at 50mg a day for a week, then added 50mg more each day each week until I reached 1500mg. a day. Yes, the flushes may be unpleasant for some people, but they don't last long and you will eventually get used to them. Within 60 days of reaching 1500 a day, my cholesterol was down to 223 and my triglycerides were down to 78! And I eat what I want. I do have to have blood work done to check my liver, just as I would with statins. I also take two capsules of cinnamon a day to regulate blood sugar as Niacin can "tip" the scale for borderline diabetics. The vinegar also helps regulate the blood sugar as well. I usually have some dill pickles, or I drink a couple of ounces of vinegar or pickled juices. The Niacin costs about $5.00 a bottle a month! Compare that to the cost of statins! My doctor is behind me 100% and has been very pleased with my progress!
10/19/2009 11:40:37 AM
cholesterol does not clog your arteries. Yes it is part of the plaque, but it is not the cuase. what causes the clogging process is inflammation. When the cells that line the blood vessel become inflammed, they allow blood to leak into the muscle of the vessel. When the body senses this every bell and whistle goes off telling the body there is a breach in the wall. The body responds by first brining in fibring which is the mesh of a clot, then puts a cholesterol band-aid on it and then hardens it with calcium. the cholesterol did not cause that. Also recent studies done in Canada show that lowering cholesterol does not obtain the ultimate objective which is reduction fo heart attack. So address the cause and that is inflammation which can be caused by bad diet, and bad digestion.
10/18/2009 5:29:53 PM
Low HDL levels that cannot be raised through good diet and exercise may be the result of moderate to severe obstructive sleep apnea. A study of folks over 65 with sleep apnea also found low HDL levels (see link below). From personal experience I know that even when I was fit, exercised regularly, and ate all the "right" foods my HDL level was 37. Within two years after being diagnosed with severe OSA (apnea) and CPAP treatment my HDL levels reacjed 50. Note that by that time I was also 20 pounds overweight and had stopped regular exercising.
Although the study was performed on folks over 65 my apnea (inherited, not weight-related) began in my 50's but was not actually diagnosed until early 2007.
Low HDL levels are now being seen as another indicator of apnea, in addition to snoring, sleepiness, morning headaches, and general fatigue. So if you have tried all of the ideas in the article on cholesterol and could not change your HDL, consider the possibility of apnea.
My mom's cholesterol is a scary 300+, and that's with statin drugs. She eats a lot of red meat and doesn't care about her cholesterol.
My MD diagnosed me with high cholesterol when I was just 12. At the time, I didn't have control over my diet, because my parents cooked. I just tried to eat less meat and more vegetables and fruits like my doctor wanted me to.
When I got older and still had high cholesterol, I became a vegetarian. Later I learned more about the ethics of meat eating/dairy consumption, and became vegan. However, I first became a vegetarian due to my cholesterol levels.
Being vegan has been the solution. It was the ONLY thing that got my choleseterol under control. Now it's around 150, and I don't eat meat or dairy. That seems high for someone who doesn't consume cholesterol, but apparently, my body just makes a lot of it.
I'd encourage thinking of a well-planned, healthy vegetarian or vegan diet over statins. Not only does it work better most of the time, especially vegan diets, but a diet richer in vegetables, fruits, and whole grains is usually not a bad thing.
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