Cholesterol values - question for the Doctors

83 posts in this topic

On 23.1.2020, 17:45:46, catjones said:

 

I know old people who smoked their entire adult life and are still alive; therefore if you smoke, keep it up, it won't kill you.  You have absolutely nothing to worry about.

 

Sure it's anectodal, but smoking is actively deciding to take dozens of poisons at once and is proven to be deadly.

 

Living my life with elevated liver levels without worrying that I might be killing myself in the process is something else altogether.

 

Just passing on what my doctor told me: if those levels were five to 10 times the norm, we'd worry.  Don't worry.   

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Spoken to a radiologist just now, here what I learnt:

My levels, 242 total, 161 LDL, 77 HDL, are indeed slightly high, but not so high to justify further investigation, no reason to take any medicine.  I already knew this.

But most interesting: it is a myth that only overweight sedentary people with not so healthy diet can have high cholesterol, fit sporty people with healthy diet can too, a huge fraction of the cholesterol we have is genetic.

Therefore every person SHOULD check his/her cholesterol regularly, saying "I'm skinny and active, so my cholesterol gotta be good, don't need to bother checking it" is just wrong.

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8 minutes ago, Gambatte said:

Spoken to a radiologist just now, here what I learnt:

My levels, 242 total, 161 LDL, 77 HDL, are indeed slightly high, but not so high to justify further investigation, no reason to take any medicine.  I already knew this.

But most interesting: it is a myth that only overweight sedentary people with not so healthy diet can have high cholesterol, fit sporty people with healthy diet can too, a huge fraction of the cholesterol we have is genetic.

Therefore every person SHOULD check his/her cholesterol regularly, saying "I'm skinny and active, so my cholesterol gotta be good, don't need to bother checking it" is just wrong.

 

Is the measurement in mg/DL?

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33 minutes ago, RenegadeFurther said:

Is the measurement in mg/DL?

Yes, the values I wrote are all mg/dl

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1 hour ago, Gambatte said:

Yes, the values I wrote are all mg/dl

 

Your LDL cholesterol is 161/38.67 == 4.163mmol/L which is fairly high.

 

I personally would not ignore those figures.

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3 minutes ago, Gambatte said:

Are you a Dr?

And what would you do?

 

I personally would make efforts to reduce your LDL cholesterol.

 

I would not brush the LDL cholesterol figure under the carpet.

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13 minutes ago, RenegadeFurther said:

I personally would make efforts to reduce your LDL cholesterol.

How would you do that?

I eat huge amount of fruit and veg and fiber and whole grains, no fried, no butter, been doing min 1hr of intense sport every day for 30+ years.

The Dr said "no need to take medicine".

How would you lower the LDL?

 

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33 minutes ago, Gambatte said:

How would you do that?

I eat huge amount of fruit and veg and fiber and whole grains, no fried, no butter, been doing min 1hr of intense sport every day for 30+ years.

The Dr said "no need to take medicine".

How would you lower the LDL?

 

 

What is your BMI?

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9 minutes ago, RenegadeFurther said:

 

What is your BMI?

59 minutes ago, RenegadeFurther said:

 

I'm 177cm and 66kg, this makes BMI = 66/1.77/1.77 = 21

My weight has never been outside the 65-67 kg range since my mid teens 30yr ago.

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30 minutes ago, Gambatte said:

I'm 177cm and 66kg, this makes BMI = 66/1.77/1.77 = 21

My weight has never been outside the 65-67 kg range since my mid teens 30yr ago.

 What have your regular blood test been.

 

You should get checked out for Familial hypercholesteremia.  

 

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4 minutes ago, RenegadeFurther said:

 What have your regular blood test been.

 

You should get checked out for Familial hypercholesteremia.  

 

Renegade,

thanks for participating in this discussion, and fine with what you wrote...

BUT

I asked you two questions and you replied none of them.

1) are you a Dr? 

2) how would you lower the value?

 

Since you have not replied any, I take 1) no, you are not a Dr, and this is absolutely fine and you are still welcome to contribute, just had you answered it would have helped to decide how seriously to take what you wrote, and 2) you have no idea how to lower the value, which is also fine per se, but also makes the reader suspect you did not bother reading what was written before lecturing, and makes what you wrote "I would lower..." a bit silly.

Sorry if I'm harsh, I hope I am not offending you, not my intention.

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His experience with this lies at the end of the scale we would all rather avoid. Hence his suggestion of looking for a cause.

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On 1/22/2020, 4:24:20, AnswerToLife42 said:

I saw an experiment on TV where a man was only allowed to eat eggs for one week. He ate 60!

Result: he lost weight. Cholesterin values were still ok.

 

IIRC, there was only ever one "big" study that was hyped in the media (in the 90s?) that suggested eggs were the devil (mmmmmm, devilled eggs), but it has been discredited many times over since then. The cholesterol levels in foods themselves do not directly correspond to the levels in your body. Eggs are healthy, so eat all you want!

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1 hour ago, Gambatte said:

Renegade,

thanks for participating in this discussion, and fine with what you wrote...

BUT

I asked you two questions and you replied none of them.

1) are you a Dr? 

2) how would you lower the value?

 

Since you have not replied any, I take 1) no, you are not a Dr, and this is absolutely fine and you are still welcome to contribute, just had you answered it would have helped to decide how seriously to take what you wrote, and 2) you have no idea how to lower the value, which is also fine per se, but also makes the reader suspect you did not bother reading what was written before lecturing, and makes what you wrote "I would lower..." a bit silly.

Sorry if I'm harsh, I hope I am not offending you, not my intention.

 

No, he's not a Dr. If you're not overweight then the high values are likely to be caused by either a poor diet or a family history of high cholesterol or maybe a bit of both. Increased activity and changing your diet can help and there is some good info at https://www.nhs.uk/live-well/healthy-body/lower-your-cholesterol/ or https://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/files/docs/public/heart/chol_tlc.pdf

 

Obviously speak to your Dr if you are worried about the values or see what they think about changing your diet/increasing activity.

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On 1/23/2020, 2:49:47, HH_Sailor said:

Well, I am not surprised that my suggestion to ignore the test results met with derision and disdain from some sides. It took me a while to convince my family members, that I was coming off the statins.

 

This may interest you, article from the Beeb a few weeks ago. It covers statins, among others:

 

https://www.bbc.com/future/article/20200108-the-medications-that-change-who-we-are


 

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1 hour ago, Gambatte said:

Renegade,

thanks for participating in this discussion, and fine with what you wrote...

BUT

I asked you two questions and you replied none of them.

1) are you a Dr? 

2) how would you lower the value?

 

Since you have not replied any, I take 1) no, you are not a Dr, and this is absolutely fine and you are still welcome to contribute, just had you answered it would have helped to decide how seriously to take what you wrote, and 2) you have no idea how to lower the value, which is also fine per se, but also makes the reader suspect you did not bother reading what was written before lecturing, and makes what you wrote "I would lower..." a bit silly.

Sorry if I'm harsh, I hope I am not offending you, not my intention.

 

No I am not a Doctor nor do I claim to be one.

 

But the fact is your LDL cholesterol is extremely high and you might not want to take statins, it in fact might be the only way to lower your cholesterol. 

 

 

 

 

 

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One more link, took me a few minutes to re-check which episode it was... This is from Quirks and Quarks, an excellent weekly science show from the CBC (Canadian Broadcasting Corp.):

https://www.cbc.ca/listen/live-radio/1-51-quirks-and-quarks (It should be also available where ever you download podcasts from, like iTunes, etc. Worth a sub!)


Look for the Dec. 28 Year in Review show. At about 13 minutes in, there's an interesting segment about studies on nutritional science and their academic rigour. It's not just replaying the segment from earlier in the year, the host has a follow-up interview too. At the end of the segment he has a quickfire "healthy or not"list to ask the expert. Worth hearing straight from the horse's mouth.

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6 hours ago, Gambatte said:

Spoken to a radiologist just now, here what I learnt:

My levels, 242 total, 161 LDL, 77 HDL, are indeed slightly high, but not so high to justify further investigation, no reason to take any medicine.  I already knew this.

But most interesting: it is a myth that only overweight sedentary people with not so healthy diet can have high cholesterol, fit sporty people with healthy diet can too, a huge fraction of the cholesterol we have is genetic.

Therefore every person SHOULD check his/her cholesterol regularly, saying "I'm skinny and active, so my cholesterol gotta be good, don't need to bother checking it" is just wrong.

 

You are super fit, your diet is very good etc. So, don't worry. You'll probably live to be 98...or you'll get hit by a bus tomorrow.

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8 hours ago, Gambatte said:

My levels, 242 total, 161 LDL, 77 HDL, are indeed slightly high, but not so high to justify further investigation, no reason to take any medicine. 

Words matter.  "Slightly high" is not what I'd choose to describe your results:

 

240 mg/dL and above   HIGH

160-189 mg/dL     High if there is no coronary artery disease. Very high if there is coronary artery disease.

60 mg/dL and above     BEST

 

Not all doctors are equal.  If I were you, I'd be somewhat concerned since your levels are considered to be high and next year I'd get examined by a different doctor and bring this year's results as a comparison to be discussed.

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