Otherwise fit but high cholestrol

Hello new community! Some of you may know me already, I am a follower on HealthUnlocked Weightloss site and a succesful "loser". and have since been a "maintainer " since 2015.

I am female, age 64 and 9st 9lbs, BMI 22.5 . I eat a balanced diet within my TDEE , but have not totally banned any foods. I exercise by walking most days 40-60 minutes. I have so far been in good health although I do take medication to control blood pressure. Recently a multi blood test showed my overall cholesterol was 7.5 but with good HDL . I was very shocked as I'm not overweight, don't smoke etc. With family history my doctor says its most likely hereditary and says I need statins. I'm reluctant . Anyone else in this position?

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  • Follow my post 'getting off statins'.

    I had a triple bypass in March of 2015 and was told I had familial hypercholesterolemia - a genetic predisposition to excess cholesterol production by my liver.

    I changed my lifestyle to low fat (low animal fat), low sugar diet. I still have dairy but it is goat dairy which does not clog arteries like cow dairy. I'm a vegetarian but still have fish 3 days per week - the cold water type that helps reduce cholesterol - salmon, trout, artic char etc...

    I exercise vigorously every other day for 1 hour, and in between those days I walk one hour. Vigorously means 30 minutes with weights and 30 minutes of high-intensity interval training done on a treadmill.

    Arugula and spinach are both important as they are vasodilators - allows your arteries to dilate and reduce blood pressure and help clear plaque from your arteries. I eat a salad of either of these greens at least once or twice each day.

    You should also consider some stress-reduction techniques like meditation as stress can increase cholesterol production.

    Good luck.

  • Thank you, I will definitely read your other post.

  • You could ask your GP fro a JBS2 risk calculation analysis. Also for full explanation.

    Watch out for hidden sugar and free sugar in food and drinks.

  • Yes Ive already tried to be fairly "sugar-aware" as a result of my weight loss journey, but I will ask my GP about the risk test.

  • Hi , I gotta say that statins do work . I've taken them for over ten years but when I was diagnosed with T2 diabetes my dose was increased to 60 mg a day and caused excessive pain in my lower limbs both joints and muscles. I stopped statins altogether two weeks ago and the pains receded but not totally gone. I now strictly restrict my saturated fats and mainly eat fish instead of meat and use products with plant stops to try and reduce my cholesterol. Currently at 5 but am told need to reduce to 4 . Reckon you should use stations but keep an eye out for side effects and seek advice if any problems. Good luck. 😇

  • Thank you, Id heard about aches and pains as a side effect but hopefully I wouldn't need too high a dose. Bloods been tested and showed no other health issues, however I am being checked for possible pulmonary condition following two asthma type attacks. Heart is fine. Hey ho, the joys of getting older!!

  • I am not a doctor and this is not medical advice. But I am a 72 year old woman who has had high cholesterol for years. I've done a lot of research, and what I've found has convinced me that elderly women should not take statins. There are some good books on Amazon about this. I think The Cholesterol Myth is one of them--there are several. Good luck to you.

  • Thank you, that's interesting!!

  • I am a white 70YO male - who has had very high cholesterol for over 30 years. For many of those years my Doctors have wanted me to take Statins and I have refused - because I had no other "risk factors" - no high blood pressure, no smoking, no overweight , good diet, high level of physical fitness, etc.

    BUT - recently I decided to have a Calcium Score test done and have discovered some bad news. This score test does away with all the theories - and shows you a picture of of your heart arteries as they actually are right now!!!! It is an excellent test for two reasons - if it finds that you have no (or low levels) of calcification in your arteries then you do not need to take medications regardless of the high levels of your cholesterol , or alternatively, if it finds that you have high levels of calcification ( for your individual age) then you will realise that you really do need to take Statins regardless of your low level of Cholesterol!!!!

    At age 70, it forced me to realise that, if I want to see 80, then I have to stop the progression of this calcification in my heart arteries. My ONLY risk factor is my high cholesterol - most probably being produced by my liver!!! - and , seeing as how most things in my life are fairly good (fitness, weight, BP,etc - which can also of course still be "improved" a little ) , I really needed to reconsider my negative attitude towards Statins and have now started a course of treatment - only 5 gms of Crestor at this time but I need to reduce my LDL from 8 mmols to 2 mmols ( a 75% reduction) so depending on future cholesterol tests ( first one in December) , I may need to increase the dosage to achieve the desired levels.

  • Thank you for sharing , your case is very interesting. I hope you're pleased with your December result 😊

  • I am on statins and have been since I was 22 now 27 as mine was 9.8 and is hereditary. I spoke with a doctor I worked with and they said it was better to start now then let everything clog up. My consultant also said that he's seen people who eat really really healthy and their cholesterol has been higher than someone who eats rubbish. It's all to do with the genetic side. I'm on 60mg and I feel fine so I would rather just take a tablet then regret it some years down the line x

  • That's a good point . I think you were wise to follow his advice in your circumstances

  • For you , I would definitely recommend a calcium score CT test. You are still very young and should not have yet have built up much artery plaque - but only this test will show you where you are right now - and it will place you in a percentile of your age group. Depending on what percentile you are in will determine what you will have to do. Knowledge is power - even if it is a little scary!!!

  • Bazza1234 thanks again, I've looked at some of your previous comments to other people on this subject - all very helpful thank you!.Hope you're having a great time in the South Pacific far away from the american madness!

  • Hi Ellie, Have you read the research on Statins for people and in particular women over the age of 50. There is clear evidence that they offer zero benefits and this evidence is strongest in women. this is well documented in the scientific literature. My suggestion would be to find out what kind of LDL cholesterol you have and most important what levels of inflamation you have. If your APOA to APOB ratio is good and if your Lp(a) is low and your CRP (inflamation) levels are low you are more likely to have nothing to worry about.

  • Thanks Markl60. Considering your's and others' points raised on here, I am going to look into this further. Very helpful thankyou.

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