Choleserol management

After reading entries on here thought all the blogs/questions were helpful so thought I would join!

The thing is I have just been diagnosed with high cholesterol 7.7 (the highest on the list the others being 5.1 - 5.5. It has increased by 1 point in 2 years. Anyway what I can't understand is that though I still have about 2 stone to loose (if I can!) I have lost 1.5 stone in 10 months through weight watchers. The loss is slow - as hence i have a life and a social life! But in general all my eating options are low fat. I have porridge oats made with water and sweetener. Use skimmed milk. Have a lot of salad. If any cake - it's a weight watchers one and usually boring rich tea biscuits. Yes occasional lapses but at least 5 days a week these are my options. Do not eat pies as don't like pastry and know how bad they are for you. Unfortunately due to full time work commitments, looking after kids and home, excercise is limited to walking the dog at night for about 20 mins - half an hour. I can only think the excercise is my downfall but wonder if anyone can throw any light on the matter as I don't really understand it?

10 Replies

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  • Thank you for this Traci :)

    My gp did suggest statins but I'm reluctant to go on medication if it can be avoided so I did say I would rather try the diet and excerse. Hence looking to increase the exercise and tweak the diet!

    Will keep a look out for more info.

  • Eating any oat based food is good for you. The argument about fat is an ongoing one and one that I won't go into here. The main thing that seems to be without argument is to decrease the carbohydrate and increase the protein. (no, that doesn't mean you can eat more cheese!!) Instead of bread, try Ryvita, salads instead of sandwiches, cut the portions of rice, pasta and potatoes and increase the meat and fish content of dishes you cook. Watch your sauces and gravies (high in carbs) Wheat and barley are not as good as rye and oats

    Start to increase the time you walk the dog! Five minutes extra each day until you reach 1 hour. Can you do perhaps 10 to 15 minutes in the morning, before work? Can you walk to work? Take 10 minutes or so to walk at lunchtime? It's amazing how it all mounts up over the week. Have you got a pedometer. You can get them even in Supermarkets these days. 10,000 steps per day is the goal. You'd be amazed at how much you actually walk in a day. Even going around the house and up and down the stairs all counts!!!!

    Keep off the statins. You are right. You don't need to go down that route until YOU feel you need them.

    WELL DONE by the way on losing the weight you have. Look back to where you were and where you are now!! Keep up the good work, and let us know how you get on.

  • Ryvita has a GI rating almost as high as sucrose Patch14.

    In what respect are rye and oats better than wheat and barley? All of them restrict the absorption of minerals in the body (not good). Pearl barley has a low GI of 25.

    Eating natural foods is the way to go.

  • Thank you very much for this response. i'm not a big carb eater anyway and I do have salads over sandwiches and ryevita over bread. I'm not actually a bread fan. Of course there are some lovely uncut wholemeal and seeded ones but if I bought them I would eat more and my kids may not eat any! so if any bread it is usually a weight watchers or similar wholemeal, though i prefer ryevitas and water biscuits. If I do end up resorting to buying a sandwich I usually end up picking off most of the bread as I don't like it. My portions are generally small with carbs as I'm not so keen unless there is plenty taste from other sources. Crumbs I'm starting to sound like a saint???

    As for the exercise, work and family and home management dictate. I do what I can when I can. Mind you presently doing lots of jobs around the house so no time to move. I have a big birthday coming up and having a party so it all has to be right. However once all done I can relax and spend more time being organised and have more leisure time. At which point i plan to join the gym - well that's the plan!

    By the way I am a really slow eater, No matter which party I am with always the last to finish (which frustrate family!) and often leave food on my plate. Anyway think best to carry on but keep tweaking it and definitely increase the exercise asap.

    Thanks again :)

  • Like you, when diagnosed (29 years ago) I was reluctant to take drugs.

    I was recommended, by my local health food shop, an age-dried garlic pill called "Kyolic" and, in the intervening years, every time I have taken these pills I have reduced my LDL cholesterol levels and, each time I have come off them (because the medical experts say they cannot work) my levels have gone up again.

    Once I got past the menopause, (because I have F.H.) I had to start on statins but still the kyolic work in conjunction with those.

    Maybe they don't work for everyone but I KNOW they work for me (in addition to a healthy diet and exercise).

  • It wouldn’t matter how active you were, if you continued to take in more usable energy than you expend, you will find it difficult to lose weight.

    Activity is important in that it improves functional capacity, such as heart and lung function.

    It is far easier to consume energy than it is to expend it.

    A study using the hypothesis that ‘a calorie is a calorie would violate the second law of thermodynamics’ found that the amount of available energy from each of the macronutrients was different to that obtained in a calorimeter, with carbohydrates yielding the most efficiently at 94%.

    It has also been consistently shown that low carb diets yield more weight-loss than low fat diets, at least in the early stages. It has been argued that this is because low carbers eat fewer calories; even then, not being hungry and controlling the appetite is the Holy Grail for some. Whether this way of eating is healthy long-term is the source of much debate. Certainly, healthy eating guidelines that state that eliminating any food group is dangerous are misleading. It is obvious that our distant ancestors thrived without eating much food from bread, pasta, rice and cereals group for instance, because most weren’t available pre-agriculturally. It is argued that these foods are contributing to the obesity crisis. Before low fat became the mainstream, cutting back on starchy foods had been popular for weight loss since William Banting’s time.

    I could go on, but I would say try a natural food diet for yourself. The food industry will tell you to eat wheat, soy, and processed oil products because that’s what they produce and makes them money.

  • I and alot of my family have high cholesterol, my highest reading was 12, my lowesr reading is 5.3 I have had verious statins, some with bad side affects. January I had an operation to unblock my corotic artery, as I was having a few mini strokes. My weight was 13 stone, I now weigh 11st 7lb and still have 2 stone to loose, I am taking my statins, eating a good diet, fruit vedg, chicken, wholemeal bread, poridge and oat bran in my poridge, walk as much as you can. Good luck.

  • Hi Concerned, I would like you to tell me where you got the info on Ryvita. According to the ingredients there shouldn't be anything in them to have such a high sugar recording. I have Ryvita because I can't tolerate bread or bread products or even home cooked soda bread because of the yeast and high gluten content of wheat products (although I am not celiac) Have you eaten rice cakes? They're like dust and God knows what are in them!!!! I try to each as natural a diet as possible but unless you grow and harvest your own grains you have to rely on what you can get in the shops.

    The difference between rye and oats and wheat and barley is to do with soluble and insoluble fibre. I cannot tolerate insoluble fibre, despite its goodness in the activity of the bowel, my innards can't cope!! I have to stick to rye and oats and maybe those people who have gastric trouble may find sticking to soluble fibre could help them. That is all I am saying. Wheat and barley also, unless organic, does get deluged with chemicals and can be GM so it is a good thing to check where your grains, of all sorts, come from.

    All the best

  • The University of Sydney provide information pertaining to GI (I have no affiliation, and only gave this because you asked the source).

    I don't persist with advocating moderating carbohydrate intake because I like the sound of my own voice; it's very important! People at risk of pre-diabetes and heart disease for instance (and many others) would benefit from keeping their carb intake below 150 grammes per day, and lowering the GI of their diet prevents blood glucose peaks and troughs.

    Please realise that all digestible carbohydrate turns to blood glucose in the body, and many complex carbohydrates (starches) do so faster than simple sugars.

  • Thank you all for your comments.

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