Had cholesterol under 5 lost 4 stone i... - Cholesterol Support

Cholesterol Support

9,030 members2,556 posts

Had cholesterol under 5 lost 4 stone in weight changed life style now it has gone up to 5.8.

Jostan profile image

Do approx 12 hours of exercise a week and follow a very healthy eating plan. Any suggestions to lower cholesterol.

22 Replies

Whow! Well done on that weight loss. It must be so disappointing that your cholesterol levels have risen again.

Your GP will probably recommend statins.

A member of this forum recently reported that Soya Lecithin tablets worked for him/her. (I've just started an experiment to see if they work for me.)

For over twenty-five years, I have relied on Kyolic Garlic Tablets (from my local health food store to keep my levels down. As I have F.H. I have had to up the dose over the years.

The medical experts have always told me that these tablets cannot work so I have tested them. When I come off the tablets my cholesterol levels go up and when I start again, they reduce. So, they work for me - and with no side effects.

All I would say is that it is your body, your problem and your life. The consultants are there to advise you but, at the end of the day it is your decision as to what choices you make.

Good luck and please let this forum know how you get on.

Jostan profile image
Jostan in reply to YvonneD

Thanks for info have a family history of heart problems and strokes and diabetics

so,naturally concerned. Seeing gp next week so want to be prepared, don't particularly want to go on medication. Will check out soya lecithin tablets.

Concerned profile image
Concerned in reply to Jostan

In that case, definitely manage your carbohydrate intake to 3 meals x 40g carbohydrate per day. Choose low GI natural carbs. Complement this with natural fat and protein foods.

YvonneD profile image
YvonneD in reply to Jostan

If you think your problem may be inherited, why not contact HEART UK - the cholesterol charity - as they can give you free, expert advice on all aspects of your condition ?

sandybrown profile image
sandybrown in reply to Jostan


Please ask your GP for a graph fo all your blood test,seeing it in a graph is a better way of understanding. I gave into medication after 20 months of trying to reducing choleterol. I am on 20mg "Lipitor", Atorvastain, on my third week. Only time will tell. My next blood test is in June.

You could try foods fortified with plant sterols which do work for some people. Your difference in levels could also be a seasonal variation, but not sure how much they alter from season to season.

Also did you have the blood test at the same hospital, it's been my experience that different labs do give different results. Yes, congratulations on your weight loss too!

Jostan profile image
Jostan in reply to Aliwally

Had bloods done at same place. I think with healthy eating am covering all foods I need but will check to see if there is any more foods I can have.

Well done on the weight loss.

Cholesterol levels naturally go up after the menopause. Don't know if this applies to you. My GP is happy with levels under 6, if you have no other problems.

Do your research on plant sterols before you try them. The margarines contain trans fat, which is really bad for the body.

Concerned profile image
Concerned in reply to Penel

Ditto. Real food doesn't need fortifying, or additives. Reduce VLDL by reducing refined carbs.

I have just had my lipids test. My total cholesterol is 4.3, LDL 2.12 and HDL 1.7. I am not quite satisfied because according to the European Heart Association for patients in risk LDL should be no more than 1.8. I am on 20 mg Crestor, dieting and exercising.


What are your numbers for total cholesterol, LDL, HDL and triglyceride before and after weight loss?

Would like to understand what causes cholesterol to go up when one do all the hard work and there is no return? Eating food, 100g? Or 40? Cooked, uncooked. I am not sure how I can measure this in my kitchen?

Beetroot and garlic are good food for reducing cholesterol.

Jostan - well done on your weight loss. I would echo 'Concerned's comments - if you have included a lot of low-fat or fat-free products in your diet to help you lose weight, these products can be high in sugar. You could try to calculate how much carbs/sugar you are consuming each day and possibly lower to see if that has any effect. You will, of course, still need carbs to fuel all that exercise, which is great amount of exercise. Try not to be too down on yourself or disappointed – four stone of weight loss and 12 hours of exercise a week is amazing!

Concerned: I've noted you posting before about a 40g limit for carbs in each meal and am very interested in this concept - if you have any other information or links, please post them. Lowering my carb intake is the only thing that has reduced my cholesterol in the past and I am currently trying to find the right balance.

YvonneD: Thanks for the tip on Kyolic Garlic, which I have recently started taking. Out of interest, can I ask what dosage you take? I've also been taking Flaxseed oil for the last couple of years, which I believe helps, and have also started taking soya lecithin.

Concerned profile image
Concerned in reply to westbury18

The guidelines were from pre-diabetes training from Novo Nordisk. As you say, you adjust for activity too. Some low carbers highlight that your body can become adapted to ketones, negating the need for carbs entirely. However this takes a couple of weeks in some instances, and if you increase your carb intake sufficient not to be ketogenic, you are restarting that adaptation clock again. It's logical therefore to have sufficient carbs to fuel activities, though no more, having natural, low GI foods.

I think sometimes people see this as a tangent. They don't see the big picture that diabetes is just one arm of metabolic disorders due to a processed food diet, as are heart disease, cancer, stroke and obesity. They are almost unheard of in 'primitive' cultures, and that is not because of the lower life expectancy of those cultures. Where you combine the wisdom of 'primitives' with the medical advancements of today, you get long living healthy people, such as the Okinawans.

Any advice is good but my wife is 67yrs 5ft 3" and weighs 44 kg and has cholesterol.Her diet is exemplory.her Doctor says its that only Statins can help with.Her ldl/hdl/tryglicerides are normal but its the Total within the body that are the problem.Dont give up the weight loss because you must feel great. !!

HI All.

I posted a question on 24th March about high cholesterol and plant sterols. I had to go and see my G.P yesterday, and thought that some of you may be interested in what was said.

I am 51, female, and my cholesterol is 6.6. I am about 2 stone overweight at present, but have joined Weight Watchers this week to lose it. My father had his first heart attack at 46 and died at 62 from his 3rd heart attack My mother had a massive stroke 8 years ago and almost died. As they do these days, all this info was keyed into the computer, and I was told that my risks of suffering similar problems are at present low. This is because I have excellent blood pressure-I eat virtually no salt, and I have never smoked. Although overweight, my HDL levels are above average, which as we know has a protective effect. He gave me a sheet published by the British Hypertension Society, which lists foods to eat lots of, a little of or, to avoid. Some foods although low calorie are actually high in cholesterol-prawns being just one example. I eat a lot of fruit and veg, but am upping my fibre intake.

I have ordered some plant sterols in tablet form from Healthspan-no problems with additional fat intake as with spreads and drinks etc. He thought this, along with my expected weight loss was a very good plan, and as things stand, I do not have to go back for a further check for 5 years.

Jostan-are all you low calorie foods low in cholesterol-it may be worth investigating. Also ask your G.P. about the relative levels of HDL to LDL.

If you look up cholesterol containing foods on the NHS choices website you'll see confirmation that they have little impact on your blood cholesterol. Basically, if you restrict cholesterol in your diet your liver responds by making more. Even Ancel Keys acknowledged that cholesterol doesn't affect blood cholesterol, saying "we've know that all along".

The debate still goes on with regard to saturated fat, due to several issues. Firstly, where implicated with increased incidence of heart disease, studies usually classified man-made partially hydrogenated vegetable oils and saturated fat together. It is now known that hydrogenated oils are toxic to the body.

Another consideration is that countries such as France, Switzerland, and Spain have high levels of saturated fat in the diet, with low incidences of heart disease. Some would argue that other factors in the diet are being protective, however, Weston Price found with 'primitive' cultures that it was the introduction of refined foods that led to poor chronic health conditions.

Monounsaturated fat is known to be beneficial in preventing CHD, yet current DoH guidelines recommend cutting the fat away from meat. Meat fat usually has more monounsaturated fat than saturated fat.

One of the highest risks for CHD is how far from the equator you live, and it has been hypothesised that this is due the corresponding decrease in vitamin D. Vitamin D is a fat soluble vitamin; the last thing you want to do is restrict its sources unnecessarily.

Concerned profile image
Concerned in reply to Concerned

One last thing, polyunsaturated oils are needed in small amounts by the body. Too much, and you risk the integrity of body cells; they go rancid very easily. Getting a balance of fats is desirable, with the small amounts of omega-3 from grass-fed animals for example being complemented by the accompanying fats.

Lean meat is not recommended (though the Eatwell Plate does) because eating lean protein necessitates obtaining vitamin A from the liver, potentially depleting stores.

Last century, much of the UK used cod liver oil as a supplement to provide these invaluable vitamins. Now the foods are available to provide them naturally, we're deterred from eating them. We get recurrences of vitamin deficiency diseases, noted in pockets such as south Wales as a result. bbc.co.uk/news/uk-wales-142...

bigleg-the sheet that I have is courtesy of Pfizer. Perhaps it is a revamped version, or a different sheet entirely. It is certainly not focusing on processed products etc. It talks of foods to eat daily from all food groups and there is a definite emphasis on healthy foods. It lists foods to avoid which are clearly based on high fat, high salt and high sugar.

I tried the above link, but it could not be found. I feel I shall give them a try based on the thumbs up from my doctor.

I think you are right about the cholesterol is bad hypothesis. I guess we are all getting a little overwhelmed by conflicting information at every turn, and basically need to follow a healthy eating plan and listen to our bodies a little more.


Yes, it would appear to be the same food list. I am interested in your thoughts.

I looked again at the link-quite thought provoking. I could not see any specific dates on this information as to when the research was conducted, but I did note that all of the references listed below range from 1991-2001, but perhaps research has moved us forward since then, as i could not see anything similar arguments which are current. That is not to say that there was no basis for their findings. I suppose we will always have conflicting opinions among the so called experts.

Lets face it, taking anything can produce some degree of adverse effect in most people. I also feel that a balanced diet including lots of fresh fruit and veg should contain enough anti-oxidants to counteract any any such problems.

Try this link-quite a lot to read and a bit technical, but interesting, i though particularly safety and cancer lowering.


Hello. Sorry for delay, but had connection problems!

I still dispute the fact that the sheet is advertising high carb processed foods. Yes, if you cherry pick some items listed, they are processed and high in carbs. However, there is to my way of viewing it, an emphasis on daily choices from a lot of unprocessed foods for example veg, fruit, fish, lean meats and so on, whilst clearly steering people away from biscuits, fried food, processed meats, cakes and high salt products to name but a few. I suppose it could be argued that many of the foods that we eat are processed to a greater or lesser degree. Short of keeping and butchering our own meat, and being self sufficient in home grown fruit and veg, I think that it is inevitable that we will all eat some processed foods. I feel that it is about striking a balance between a totally boring, miserable existence if we only ate totally unprocessed foods verses healthier choices over all food groups. I eat lots of porridge made with skimmed milk and water. It is a healthy choice, but the oats can still be deemed to be processed.

I think it must also be remembered that not all individuals who are given this type of sheet are able to analyse data and information and then make informed choices as to what constitutes healthy or unhealthy. Realistically, there are people for whom this type of diet sheet is completely and utterly appropriate.

I guess we will have to agree to differ on this one.

I cannot seem to access pages 5 and 6 of the above book, but will look again another day.

Hi bigleg,

Have you read this study or just the cherry picked quotes - an honest question (forum posts always sound condescending). It's interesting for debate but you have to leave the mind a little open and consider a couple of things.

If you've read it I won't bore you with the questions the authors themselves raise as areas for further investigation. But suffice to say...the people conducting the study themselves have said:

"The main limitation of this study is its observational design, which prevents us drawing conclusions about causality."

I dislike the 17% thing - as the people on this forum all know ratio is important, comparing a cholesterol level of 5 with low HDL compared to a level of 5.5 with high HDL would support their findings. I've no idea where the link you give gets the 50 years old thing (all the subjects were over 60 - unless I missed something). Did people with FH squ the results - it is possible for some people to have extremely high levels and to live long lives - that could appear to show a predictive effect of cholesterol?

It definitely is not a definitive answer for me. But...

The results are nonetheless really really very interesting. What I want to know is what we can draw from it? For me it creates loads more questions then it answers...

such as the breakdown/ratio of lipids, protective effect of HDL, effects of diabetes. Are some people (those who will live to older ages) just more durable? Is cholesterol just an indicator of something else?

Thanks for sharing...


Hi bigleg,

did you try here?


"For me the answer is the evidence clearly illustrates that to lower cholesterol appears to be more dangerous to our long term health than high cholesterol." - No, no, no no no!

Please don't use this single study to come to that conclusion. Even the researchers themselves don't try to allude to that - and believe me academics do anything to draw attention to their work.

When I said it was interesting I meant as part of the bigger picture. The study proves nothing but does lead to some questions - like I state above.

The statin nation video is pretty rubbish. Well made, entertaining, but rubbish. Whilst I agree with many of the elements within what they are saying (science is ever evolving and scientists do get things wrong time and time again) - it is a bunch of people trying to prove someone/something wrong rather than bring forward their own proven hypothesis. Very anti-establishment (which I have no problem with) but not actually helpful. I plan on writing a critical review of the video actually for a bit of balance - when I have a minute.