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Old 03-17-2017, 07:43 AM   #1
Sajowski
Junior LCF Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2017
Location: Johnstown, OH
Posts: 2
Gallery: Sajowski
Stats: 200/180/175
WOE: LCHF...for now
Newbie concerned about latest cholesterol results

Hello, new to the forum, and relatively new to LCHF. A quick bit about myself...

I am a 44 year old male, cholesterol has always seemed to be a bit high. I started dabbling with LCHF about a year and a half ago, and went from 203lbs to 180lbs relatively quickly. I got back into lifting weights and gained a few lbs but my waist has consistently decreased. Happy with those results, I was hoping to see some improvements in my cholesterol numbers, so I got more strict with the diet in Sept 2016. For reference, here are my numbers from the period of time were I was dabbling, and lost the weight:

STANDARD LIPID PANEL SEPT 2015
Cholesterol 269mg/dl
Triglycerides 131mg/dl
HDL Cholesterol 43mg/dl
LDL Cholesterol, Calculated 200mg/dl
Cholesterol, Total/HDL 6.3
Non-HDL Cholesterol 226mg/dl

STANDARD LIPID PANEL SEPT 2016
Cholesterol 250mg/dl
Triglycerides 84mg/dl
HDL Cholesterol 47mg/dl
LDL Cholesterol, Calculated 186mg/dl
Cholesterol, Total/HDL 5.3
Non-HDL Cholesterol 203mg/dl

I was happy with those results, it seemed as though things were trending in the right direction, and my Triglycerides/HDL ration was good, according to what i was reading. My doctor was still talking about statins, which I am resistant to, so in Sept 2016 I started getting more strict on the diet, cutting more sugar, less cheating, etc. I also requested we do the particle size test for the follow up, which was just last week. Here are those results:

NMR LIPOPROFILE MARCH 2017
Total HDL Particle Concentration 31.7 umol/L
Small LDL Particle Concentration 480 nmol/L
LDL Particle Size 21.4 nm
Large VLDL-P 1.3 nmol/L
Small LDL Particle Concentration 480 nmol/L
Large HDL Particle Concentration 6.1 umol/L
VLDL Size 32.7 nm
LDL Size 21.4 nm
HDL Size 9.0 nm
LP-IR Score (0-100) 26
Total LDL Particle Concentration 2326 nmol/L
LDL-C 247 mg/dL
HDL-C 54 mg/dL
Triglycerides 101 mg/dL
Total Cholesterol 321 mg/dL

I don't completely understand all of these measurements, but the top section looked okay. I am concerned with the total LDL number being so high, my LDL-C going up, and most of all my triglycerides going up. I was sure my triglycerides would go down, as I was more strict than ever with sugar. On a possibly related note, my fasting blood glucose went up a bit too, to 116, although it's been a little high as long as I can remember. They ran an A1c and it was 4.9%, so my doctor was not concerned with my glucose when taking that into account.

Sorry for the super long post, but I am struggling with this and wondering if I shouldn't rethink my diet. I am still waiting to hear from my doctor regarding the results, but wanted to get some additional input as well. I appreciate any advice.

Thanks,
Andy

Last edited by Sajowski; 03-17-2017 at 07:51 AM.. Reason: Formatting
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Old 03-17-2017, 11:10 AM   #2
Leo41
Senior LCF member
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Posts: 4,983
Gallery: Leo41
Stats: 340 then/145 now
WOE: Low carb/calorie cycling
Andy-
Only a small portion of our cholesterol is responsive to diet--most is produced by the body as it deems necessary and is genetically determined. There are many who have familial high cholesterol--these are the men who died of heart attacks in their early 30s in the 50s. They are the ones who benefit most from statins. For example, I have a friend (now retired) whose father died of a heart attack at age 38, and when my friend (slim and fit) was tested at age 30, his cholesterol was through the roof--and he's been on statins ever since.

If your LDL particle size is small, that's not good. As you point out, that LDL-C going up isn't good. And your low HDL is worrisome because it's near the bottom of the range, and it's best to be much higher. So it's possible that you are a good candidate for Rx assistance with cholesterol, but I'm not a physician, and this is a decision to make with your doctor.

It might not be your diet but specific items. For example, do you use Coconut Oil? I discovered that it caused my LDL to rise rapidly (which went down as soon as I stopped using it).

I've also read that although saturated fat is not bad, some people have a gene that makes it bad for them (they don't process it well). So it's tough to know
how to proceed.

Certainly talk to your doctor about this, but I know that many doctors have a knee jerk response to high cholesterol and immediately recommend statins. You might want to do a little research first on some other options to suggest.

Also keep in mind that many doctors know that they can get in 'trouble' for not following 'standard practice.' For example, I was having a conversation with my cardiologist about my own cholesterol (elevated LDL, but very high HDL, and very low trigs). All he wanted to do is focus on the LDL, and I'd brought an article that showed my numbers to actually be excellent. He smiled and said, "I know this, but I have to follow the guidelines of the American Heart Association in the advice I give patients." In other words, he knew I was correct, but he was unable to openly agree with me because of those 'guidelines.'

I'm 75, and experiences with physicians have made me very pro-active in my own health care, and I think that's kept me healthy
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Old 03-17-2017, 11:43 AM   #3
Sajowski
Junior LCF Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2017
Location: Johnstown, OH
Posts: 2
Gallery: Sajowski
Stats: 200/180/175
WOE: LCHF...for now
Thanks for the reply Leo, you make some good points. I've definitely been researching this stuff, but a lot of the information regarding cholesterol and LCHF seems to still be up for review.

My HDL has been low for a really long time, I remember it being in the 20s...and my doctor has been impressed that it has increased as much as it has. My triglycerides used to be extremely high as well, and they have come down. I just can't seem to get a handle on the LDL though. There is no history of heart disease in my family, and my doctor has said they I will start getting heart scans at 45, so hopefully that will give me peace of mind.

I also tend to go full bore when I try something, and I am wondering if maybe letting the pendulum swing back the other way a bit would be worth a shot. I am just struggling with adding back some of the "healthy" carbs and reducing the fat a little...but looking back, my numbers seemed better on paper when I was taking that approach.
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Old 03-17-2017, 12:51 PM   #4
Leo41
Senior LCF member
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Posts: 4,983
Gallery: Leo41
Stats: 340 then/145 now
WOE: Low carb/calorie cycling
Yes, the trigs should come down with low carb.

But in your situation, I'd probably do what you plan--i.e., moderate your diet a little to when your numbers were better.

Good luck!
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