High cholesterol : Hi all, I am due to receive... - Thyroid UK

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High cholesterol

HashisKate profile image

Hi all,

I am due to receive cholesterol results over the phone tomorrow and I would like to be prepared. I am a 37 year old female and I know that the familial high cholesterol is in my family, however, I had a cholesterol test about 10 years ago ‘prior to diagnosis’ and it was a healthy 3. However, I’m panicking that this will have changed.

Based on previous blood test results, it would appear I am a poor converter. However, it turned out I was over medicated when I had the blood tests. (the one which showed I was converting poorly). I agreed to a dose reduction and have actually felt well (on the whole) on this dose. I will say though I have continued to gain weight so things are perhaps not perfect. So I’m just worried my cholesterol may be high if my T3 is possibly low. I guess my questions are the following:

*could me being over medicated on Levo have been contributing to my poor conversion in the past? @greygoose, I saw that you had commented on another post saying this can be the case?

*what would you recommend for someone who cannot access T3 but has high cholesterol (and doesn’t want to take statins)

Unfortunately I don’t have blood test results on my current dose to compare, in an ideal world I will get these next month, but a combination of not being able to afford and anxiety due to results seeming to create more questions than answers (sudden high b12 etc)

Would be good to have a bit of info so I can be armed if the GP wants to put me on statins. Maybe my cholesterol isn’t high but I’m just worrying that it is and I was very hypothyroid by the time I was diagnosed.

Thank you

5 Replies

*could me being over medicated on Levo have been contributing to my poor conversion in the past? @greygoose, I saw that you had commented on another post saying this can be the case?

If your FT4 is at the top of the range, it will convert to more rT3 than T3. This will make poor conversion worse. But, very unlikely that it is the only reason for poor conversion. People with FT4 that high are usually poor converters anyway.

*what would you recommend for someone who cannot access T3 but has high cholesterol (and doesn’t want to take statins)

There's really not much you can do. Make sure that your nutrients are all optimal, but it's not very likely that low nutrients would be the only reason for you poor conversion. Do you have Hashi's? Hashi's people are very often poor converters, but there's nothing you can do about that, except take T3.

If you don't want to take statins, don't take them. Even if your doctor says he's going to prescribe them, there's no law that says you have to take them. High cholesterol is not the problem they make it out to be, anyway. (I'm talking about high cholesterol caused by low T3, here, I know nothing about familial high cholesterol.) It is a symptom, not a disease and it won't cause heart attacks or strokes. In fact, it's said that those with higher levels of cholesterol live longer. :)

HashisKate profile image
HashisKate in reply to greygoose

Thank you greygoose for your reply 🙂 in response, yes I do have autoimmune thyroid disease although they didn’t call it Hashimotos because I didn’t have a goitre that they could see (swear it was there though!! Felt I was choking if I lay on my left side!!)

My conversion was crap for want of a better word, but did improve considerably once I got my b12 up (and up and up and up, despite stopping supplementing!!) and also improved my vitamin d. Then I had my Levo reduced and I’m not sure now. Hopefully I’ll get something to compare to soon.

Aside from getting fatter, I feel ok on my current dose and am reluctant to change things. I don’t think I have familial cholesterol problems as my cholesterol test years ago was normal (despite it being in my family!). But is it really true that high cholesterol usually doesn’t cause heart attacks and strokes etc? I really do not want to go on statins from what I have read and agree that I won’t take it just because I am given it.

Thank you 🙂

greygoose profile image
greygoose in reply to HashisKate

I would suggest you check out Dr Malcom Kendrick and his blog, and his book 'The Big Cholesterol Con'. That will answer all your questions. :)

SlowDragon profile image
SlowDragonAdministrator

nhs.uk/conditions/statins/c...If you have an underactive thyroid (hypothyroidism), treatment may be delayed until this problem is treated. This is because having an underactive thyroid can lead to an increased cholesterol level, and treating hypothyroidism may cause your cholesterol level to decrease, without the need for statins. Statins are also more likely to cause muscle damage in people with an underactive thyroid.

If cholesterol is high request GP test full thyroid including Ft3, plus vitamin D, folate, ferritin and B12

All four vitamins need to be OPTIMAL for good conversion of Ft4 to Ft3

Always test thyroid levels early morning, ideally before 9am and last dose levothyroxine 24 hours before test

I will tell you this. Before my diagnosis of Overt Hypothyroidism, my cholesterol levels were very high. I was put on statins which did NOT help bring the bad levels down. In fact, my bad levels went even higher. I had even changed my diet which did nothing. I quit taking statins after a while. My new doctor that actually diagnosed me said statins won't help if the cholesterol numbers were due to untreated hypothyroidism. I believe this would be true basing it on my lab results. I've only been on Levothyroxine going on 2 months now and haven't had my cholesterol checked since. I plan on requesting the test soon, just to see. The statin I was on did not cause any noticible side effects and I would've kept taking them had they helped, but seeing they didn't help, I seen no reason to stay on them. Rosuvastatin was the one I was on that didn't cause me any issues.

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