Help!: Hi, I'm a strict vegetarian... - British Heart Fou...

British Heart Foundation
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Help!

lorrie_g
lorrie_g

Hi, I'm a strict vegetarian, type 2 diabetic with a cholesterol reading of 6.1. Don't smoke, dig my allotment and live a fairly healthy life (no choc or chips!). Anyone have any tips to reduce my cholesterol level, please? Thanks

14 Replies
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MichaelJH
MichaelJHHeart Star

If your diet is low fat then it may be hereditary. Assuming it is low fat something like Benecol will probably not get it down to 5.0. You may need a statin or other drug to get a healthy level.

lorrie_g
lorrie_g in reply to MichaelJH

Thank you for your reply, I guess taking statins is what I need to get my head around

Vegetarian does not automatically mean healthy, despite what everyone one might tell you. But I think its possible that you are one of those people who just produce too much cholesterol (if you have a family history of high cholesterol then that's quite likely). Your biggest single risk factor for high cholesterol is genetic and not diet.

lorrie_g
lorrie_g in reply to stevejb1810

Thank you for your reply, The hereditary/genetic factor is not good news but maybe statins would be the best way forwards for me. Diet and lifestyle changes don't seem to be impacting on my cholesterol levels!

I have been vegetarian most of my life. I put my high cholesterol down to cheese & eggs (don't drink milk - sinusitis). I am now vegan. My cholesterol level has gone down but that is probably a combination of diet and statins.

I read an article yesterday "What Really Causes Heart Disease? ", by an experienced surgeon (Dr. Dwight Lundell), which says that cholesterol is not the cause of heart disease, inflammation is. It then goes on to say what causes the inflammation, mostly processed food which I have never eaten. More confused than ever now.

Looks like you and I fall into the "heredity" quicksand.

MichaelJH
MichaelJHHeart Star in reply to jimmyq

1000 mg SR Vitamin C daily helps reduce irritation (c.f. scurvy). Strangely I have been told to stop it two weeks before any surgery date as they class it as a herbal remedy (and it's no St. John's Wort).

jimmyq
jimmyq in reply to MichaelJH

What does the SR stand for?

MichaelJH
MichaelJHHeart Star in reply to jimmyq

Slow release. Vitamin C is slightly acidic and SR version is far less likely to cause any issues particularly with those on something like omazrapole already.

jimmyq
jimmyq in reply to MichaelJH

Thanks.

MichaelJH
MichaelJHHeart Star in reply to jimmyq

Tests have also shown the SR version is better absorbed and utilised by the body.

what is your chol to hdl ratio ? that is more accurate than absolute cholesterol..

do lp(a) test if high then statin is not soln .. go for oil free diet till test result (search dean ornish , if you are in India plenty of saaol vedio avl)

Firstly, the total cholesterol is less significant than the proportion of it against HDL. Low fat does not equal low cholesterol nor does it mean reduced risk of cardiac episode. Good proportion of mono-unsaturates will help you. If you don't eat fish (oily ones are great), then ensure you use a quality extra-virgin olive oil regularly, ideally not just as a cooking fat (which destroys much of the beneficial properties).

Reduce bad fats especially wen cooking my gran was thoughtful she ate healthy but cooked with bad fat. It didn’t help the whole family.

Have you tried giving up processed sugar? You could continue with fruit, but give up al other forms of sugar, including Honey, Maple Syrup etc, in your diet. You will need to watch processed foods, especially low fat ones which are normally crammed with sugar.

Once you get through the first week (withdrawal headaches) you will feel amazing and should find that your Cholesterol improves.

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