Cholesterol rising after losing 2 stone! - Cholesterol Support

Cholesterol Support

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Cholesterol rising after losing 2 stone!


Hi All - newbie here...

I'm just 64, female, just lost two stone (dress she 12) exercise every day. Nn smoker, light drinker and consider that I eat well, but my recent blood test has reported that my cholesterol has risen from 6.5 in 2019 to 7.2 now. GP ha suggested 20 mg statin but not taken my BP....Feeling deflated as thought weight loss plus exercise would have cracked this...Any ideas please - thinking of giving up red meat and some processed floods, milk butter etc - would it make a difference to avoid the statins does anyone think. My dad had heart attack and eventually a stroke, died at 85...

Thanks everso in advance -

24 Replies

I care little for my TC reading because it is a very poor indicator for heart disease. Something like half the people who die from heart attacks have cholesterol levels considered normal.

That said, the two numbers that are actually measured (rather than calculated/estimated) are important, HDL and triglycerides. A good diet and exercise will increase HDL and lower triglycerides. If you are losing a lot of weight rapidly it can cause a temporary rise in triglycerides, but typically they will move in the opposite direction of HDL.

The higher your HDL is, the less small dense LDL particles you will have. These are the ones that do harm, but you don't know how many you have because they don't measure it.

I have shunned statins and am focused on raising my HDL. It may also be worth researching what statins actually do and that might help with your decision.

It can be hard to go against your doctor's advice, but when it comes to this subject I fear many are years behind the latest research.

ElizH123 in reply to Supafil

Good morning - Thank you for your helpful comments; I am getting another test done with a physician in London - My GP did not take my blood pressure when I went for the blood test; yet prescribed the statins then has subsequently phoned and told me not to take them as they do not have up to date BP reading... I guess this type of thing is due to telephone appointments and not seeing a doc at the surgery during this epidemic.

They have also not shared the full range of the results which I will ask them for. My bp is normally low 110/65-70 - I am losing weight steadily and have a peloton bike plus two dogs that I power walk with, so I think for the next three months, I will focus on diet more and cut down the red meat and processed foods such as bacon and sausages. I m already on skimmed milk but will give the plant stuff a go too and see if that makes a difference. Hey ho...happy Sunday:) But my renewed thanks to you again and for sharing your thoughts etc. I will start to read all the papers related to statins that I can find...

Please provide all lipid numbers for members to comment. Thanks.

ElizH123 in reply to sandybrown

Morning Sandy - Thank you and I need to get the full range which they did not share with me - as above didn't take my BP either, so have told me not to take the Statins as yet 'till that reading is done, But as I am stuck at home at the mo; I won't be able to get out for another 10 days (due to friend who has +test for this virus). I'll call the surgery again tomorrow and ask for all the numbers. Have a good day ahead. Liz:)

ElizH123 in reply to sandybrown

Morning Sandy

I now have my full blood count - My bp is 110/70

Serum Lipids - which states "Abnormal"

Serum cholesterol 7.2 from 6.5 one year ago (range less than 5)

Tryglycerides 1.1 mol/l. (range less than 2)

Serum HDL cholesterol level 2.22

! LDL. 4.5 (0.00 - 3.00 mol) - this seems to be the villain here..

Cholesterol/HDL ratio 3.24

I've cut out all processed meats; on porridge, fish veg; nothing in the way of sweets biscuits cakes etc - on brown bread/rice...

Exercise ++

Many thanks in advance


sandybrown in reply to ElizH123

Thank you for your reply.

Your blood press is good. Cholesterol numbers are man made, once a doctor commented "When I was in medical school cholesterol test numbers were higher than today."

Human body produces 80 % of total cholesterol on demand as the body needs it.

20 % of cholesterol is from food intake.

As we age our blood numbers increase.

Man made formula, TC= HDL + LDL + Trig.

Therefore LDL = TC - HDL - Trig.

In your case LDL = 7.2 -2.2 -1.2

= 7.2 - 3.4

= 3.86

I do not know how the 4.5 came about.

If you GP practice understand this they can offer you an explanation.

For me at the age of 74, my blood numbers are above normal, I am not taking any medication. When my doctor changed, new doctor wanted me on statin to lower cholesterol and the total cholesterol came down to 2.8.

After three weeks, (my doctor wanted me to wait for three months for blood test). Because I was not 100%, I did a cholesterol check at a local chemist at me cost and stopped statin.

You could ask you GP for a risk analysis and offer full explanation and life style change suggestions. also ask the question why is my body making more cholesterol?

80% of 7.2 = 5.76.

20% of 7.2 = 1.44

As your BP is 110/70, the blood is flowing without any difficulties with the heart pumping it.

Please do not stress, enjoy life and with your hard work of food control and exercise you can enjoy healthy life.

Take care.

ElizH123 in reply to sandybrown

Thank you very much indeed - I appreciate the time you have taken to explain this to me. I think with the current situation and only telephone consultations; it is difficult to get more of an in-depth analysis of what and why (when something comes out of the blue) and one has 5 mins with a doctor at my practice that I have never met.

So in time, I am going to look at this in more detail and raise the questions.

I know we've all got enough going on at the moment in the grand scheme of things; but I am very appreciate of all the responses here which have helped me to try and understand this and to try different diet methods and helpful reading materials. I'm sure my weight will drop even more when I've gone down the more green route and looking at food labels will certainly be a priority.

No point in stressing over it, as you say...and I hope you too have a good as Autumn and Winter as you can in the current climate.

Good weekend too.

Liz :)


Your story sounds similar to mine. I was warned my cholesterol was high in 2006 and told to try and bring it down with diet. When I went back a few months later, I was very demoralized that the figures had gone up slightly!

As others have pointed out, do keep a record of your full results - HDL, LDL, triglycerides – and become familiar with what’s considered ideal for these figures, rather than just the overall cholesterol.

My doctor put my on 20mg statins and they reduced my overall cholesterol from around 6.8 to 5.3 (still elevated). It stayed around this level for the next few years. However, following advice from others on these forums, I decided to then try going vegan for two days a week in 2014 (mainly because I just can’t face being vegan all the time). I thought going vegan just part of the week might help. To my surprise and delight, when I next got my cholesterol checked (just a couple of months later), all my cholesterol results were at ‘optimal’ levels. I’ve stuck with the part-time vegan diet and statins since then and my cholesterol levels always returns as ‘optimal/good’.

I think different things impact different people in different ways because of their genetics, but for me, I think dairy and animal products really contributed to my elevated cholesterol levels. Going part-time vegan was not as hard as I first imagined - there’s lots of vegan alternatives out there now (even cakes - I do have a sweet tooth!). I don’t drink milk (switched to black coffee years ago), and have built up a good range of favourite easy, vegan recipes. I aim for three, full vegan days a week now, and have porridge (with water) with some fruit and granola for breakfast each day. I still eat some of my favourite meat and fish dishes the rest of the time, but keep processed meat (i.e. sausages, etc) as a once-a-week treat. Something for you to consider if you really want to try and avoid statins (although as I say, I do also take 20mg statin). Good luck!

ElizH123 in reply to westbury18

Hello and good morning...

Thank you for your response and your experience of this. The diet is my next big play in an effort to try and mitigate this on my own - as my father had two heart attacks and eventually a stroke, I am mindful of my family history. You are right, there are many good diet options out there as well as helping our planet. The bacon sarnie/sausage butty is going west for a bit and I will consider totally free days of red meat and processed food - like you; I like my puds but the start was porridge for breakfast this am with strawberries and blueberries and I've just lobbed a flaxseed packet on the Sainsburys delivery, Thank you so much for sharing your experience with me. I was feeling so hacked off when I got this result, but already beginning to feel better sharing my kerfuffle with all of you are experiencing the same. Problem shared etc., is making me feel a bit better about it all thanks to all who have responded to me and I agree with you entirely - our genetics are all different and things affect people in different ways but I am on a mission now to change my diet completely and read as many articles as I can and listen to the advice and help of all here...So thank you for your input into my post and for your good wishes

Good health and wishes toy and stay well this autumn.

Enjoy the rest of the weekend...:)


I would recommend reading the book “the big cholesterol con”. It is a very well researched book written by a dr who has debunked the idea that statins are necessary. I myself had a cholesterol reading of nearly 7 and was routinely put on statins. Had a terrible experience with it and after a 3D heartscan it was revealed my arteries were clean as a whistle so the heart specialist told me to come of them and anything else I was put on (after a brief spell in hospital on the heart dept) and discharged me completely. This book is for sale on amazon and I would recommend it. Statins are the biggest moneymakers for big pharma and people are put on them at much lower levels than before, pushed upon GP’s by the drug representatives. Apparently hardly anybody dies of a heart attack due to high cholesterol levels. Anyway I am no medic but have read various books on the subject and know big pharma obviously makes more money by keeping us on drugs.

ElizH123 in reply to Emma2017

Hi Emma

Good morning and thank you for sharing your experience and this book suggestion - I will get on with that.

I remember seeing a lot of media coverage a few years back regarding statins and I think that has stuck in my mind as to the pros and cons and what's what surrounding this family of drugs. I do know of some people who take them and have none of the side effects, but others who have not tolerated them well. Interestingly as well as suggesting the statins, the GP asked me if I wanted time to consider if I wanted to take them so I've found the experience surrounding this (no BP taken for example, then being told not to take them), all a bit vague, although in fairness she did explain what the different types of cholesterols do.

It's left me sitting on the fence, but thank god for this forum and all the help and assistance surrounding me which has taken me out of panic mode. I'm very appreciative to you all.

Enjoy the rest of your weekend and thank you v much for your response.

Stay well this autumn..

Liz :)

Pollypuss in reply to Emma2017

All my levels were normal but I still had furry arteries . Played tennis 3 days a week and eat a really healthy diet but was told it was hereditary. Well I was 77 and had a mild heart attack. I am a stressful type and I think that has a lot to do with heart attacks . I won’t be scared into taking statins because I can’t anyway as they cause havoc

Emma2017 in reply to Pollypuss

They say anxiety and stress are the biggest contributors to heart attacks. Not easy to get away from in today’s stressful world.

Please take a look at this video clip:

Hypothyroidism can also raise cholesterol levels, have you had a complete thyroid panel TSH, FT3, FT4 and T3 (most gps will only test TSH) sigh!

Im thyroid less and my cholesterol levels skyrocketed when Im having issues and weight-loss and changing diet not much help!

ElizH123 in reply to Batty1

Good morning

Thank you for pointing this out; I have not had a thyroid test but will take this up when I speak to the physician. Seems to be all sort of driving factors unfortunately...

Stay well...:)


Reducing triglycerides should be your primary target for CAD risk-reduction. Triglycerides are major factor in determining Apo-B levels. Medical study recently released, shows residual risk to patients taking statins if triglyceride levels are still elevated.

Lowering triglycerides means avoiding all sugars and equivalents, fruit juices, soft-drinks, over-processed packaged foods, and simple carbohydrates such as white flour products, white rice, and white potatoes.


I had bypass surgery in 2015, cut out all simple carbs, exercise daily and as a result, I was able to stop all meds, including statins in 2016. Lab results are all excellent, but most proud of triglyceride level 0.45mmol/l. No adverse coronary events since dietary and lifestyle modifications.

Sugar and processed foods are a scourge of the 20th and 21st century and were not easily accessible in human history. You don't need these things to live; focus on eating real food and preparing your own meals from scratch. Sugar and simple carbs are addictive and once you break the addiction after 2-3 weeks, you no longer miss them.

Dr. Robert Lustig:

Hi Liz, Do be aware that for a Cholesterol Support forum, there are a lot of anti-statin people on here! 20mg is a low dose and it may be that you experience no side-effects - most people don't, but of course, the adverse aspects are what receives publicity. The jury is out on how much a change of diet helps reduce cholesterol, unless your diet is really unhealthy to start with, but the processed foods definitely have to go and on the BHF forum (a sister site to this one), lots of people say that a vegan diet has helped them. Unprocessed fruit, veg, grains, beans, oats, nuts etc. are great for keeping cholesterol under control, but be a bit careful if you try vegan 'substitutes' for animal products to make sure that they aren't actually more harmful than the real thing. A vegan friend recommended her favourite brand of vegan cheese to me, but when I looked at the label, it contained far more saturated fats, (which is what we should be avoiding) than Cheddar, and I've found the same thing with products like 'vegan burgers'. Just because the label says 'vegan' doesn't mean it's healthy! Good luck!

ElizH123 in reply to valeriep

Hi there, thank you very much for responding to me and for your comments which are really appreciated and relevant. I consider at the moment that I do have a good fairly clean diet but will boost up on the oats, nuts, grains and beans etc., and as you say, the processed stuff has to go but will try to do a day or two as without meat etc., to see if it has any impact. I'll grad do some switching over the next couple of months but will be careful to ensure that I do eat enough of the right stuff and I will need to get my head around labelling and saturated fats in particular. Guess this will be a whole new journey, but worth a try. I get entirely what you say about healthy foods whatever the diet!

My renewed thanks again for responding.

Stay well this Autumn...

Liz :)

Speakeazi in reply to ElizH123

A small tip I find helpful- I check all the labels and if there is anything red in it- I just don’t buy it. I try to keep to all green especially in the sat fat department.

I am on Statins and ezetimibe and have no problems.

One thing to consider is what your access to blood tests are like. Where I live it is impossible to get anything other than a private one- and that included one for my husband’s PSA check following prostate cancer 2 years ago.

Take care.

Thank you for responding to me; we are on limited GP services too (as everywhere is at the moment). I am going to have a private consultation for comparison's sake and a repeat of this test - I think in 2 months time - lockdowns permitting etc. and raise the questions.

I will be looking at labels as you suggest and have been looking at all the cooking alternatives and nutrition. Going to give it another go with avoiding all the processed stuff to see if that makes a valid contribution too.

Take care too and have as good an Autumn and Winter as you can...



I read about " Edamame Beans" helping to lower cholesterol, eating small quantity on daily basis with meal or as a snack. This information as in the papers again yesterday.

I but frozen " Edamame Beans" from supper market, 480g packet, boil the 480g packet to have for some of it for evening meal, the rest I keep it in the fridge and eat a small quantity.

My belief is it is helping me to control cholesterol.

ElizH123 in reply to sandybrown

Hi there Sandy; and thank you.

Edamame Beans are something that I need to get in stock as I have scooted around these for some time. I found some good lentil recipes and I have made a very conscious start with the diet, have ditched all the usual for the Benecol type of product and now as the winter draws in vegetable soups etc will come more into play.

I will repeat the test at the beginning of December to see if it has altered at all.

Many thanks once again and have a good weekend ahead:)



You may find the article in the link below very interesting.:

"To summarize the relationship between food cholesterol and blood cholesterol:

Most cholesterol from food does not get absorbed unless body levels are low.

The amount of cholesterol you eat has almost no effect on your cholesterol levels.

The vast majority of cholesterol in your body is made by your body’s own cells. Remember that creepy line from the movie When a Stranger Calls? “The call is coming from inside the house.” The excess cholesterol is coming from inside your body, not from the food you eat."

Take care.

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