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Low Cholesterol?

Discussion in 'Diagnostic Guidelines and Laboratory Testing' started by Ema, Sep 19, 2012.

  1. Ema

    Ema Senior Member

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    Midwest USA
    I had my cholesterol tested recently and I'm not sure if my results are good or too low. I've read that the level should be between 150-200 optimally to stabilize the cell membrane well enough to create good levels of ATP. Apparently good cholesterol levels are also needed for proper cell division and low levels may be a risk factor for cancer.

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/dr-mercola/the-cholesterol-myth-that_b_676817.html

    My results are:

    118 mg/dL (100-199)
    Triglycerides 59 (0-149)
    HDL cholesterol 56 (>39)
    VLDL 12 (5-40)
    LDL 50 (0-99)

    The HDL result says that greater than 59 is considered a negative risk factor for CHF. So I assume that my level is a risk factor for CHF?

    Is my LDL too low? The article seems to indicate than under 130 is too low - but again how to raise?

    Does anyone know about the important ratios and what they are meant to be?

    How do you raise total cholesterol - diet? Are there any other ways?

    Does low cholesterol indicate a liver problem since most cholesterol is made in the liver?

    Help!
  2. aprilk1869

    aprilk1869 Senior Member

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    Scotland, UK
    Sherlock likes this.
  3. frenchmoxie

    frenchmoxie

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    Hi Ema,

    Sorry I don't have any insight into this topic but just wanted to chime in and say that I'm in the same "low cholesterol" situation as you it seems. Last time I was tested my total cholesterol was at 129 mg/dL, and I also think that having it this low is definitely not a good thing. I read somewhere that low cholesterol can be a sign of adrenal fatigue/exhaustion. Can't remember where I read it, though. Would be interesting to see if any other people on the forum have low cholesterol levels as well.
  4. Valentijn

    Valentijn Activity Level: 3

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    Amersfoort, Netherlands
    Cholesterol is needed to make aldosterone, DHEA, and cortisol. So it could even be a cause for adrenal fatigue, I think?
  5. Chris

    Chris Senior Member

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    Ema, there are lots of people with cardiac problems who would kill to get your cholesterol figures! My own are pretty close, but that is on a very low fat vegan diet plus a very low dose ( 7 mg Lipitor every two days) of a statin. If your figures are the result of your diet, and you are not on cholesterol lowering drugs, I think I would not worry--but of course, symptoms and tests might show problems somewhere. It is often said that cholesterol figures are not responsive to diet--that is certainly quite untrue of my own case. If I did not have diagnosed atherosclerosis and had your figures, I would certainly feel free to eat more wild salmon and avocado. Chris
  6. Ema

    Ema Senior Member

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    Except that they've pretty well de-bunked the whole cholesterol/heart disease connection myth...and shown that it is actually inflammation caused in part by the very diets recommended (high in Omega-6s and sugar and low in fat) that are contributing to the problems. Don't get me started on statins...hope you are taking Co-Q-10 as well.

    http://chriskresser.com/heartdisease

    Cholesterol is the building block for all the hormones. It just stands to reason that at least one reason I'm having trouble with my endocrine system has to go back to a lack of raw materials due to a low cholesterol level.

    I asked my doctor about this last week and she said that really only niacin and fish oil had been shown to have any effect on raising the HDL. It was not a very productive conversation!
  7. Ema

    Ema Senior Member

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    I would think so Valentijn...I just don't know how to raise it, especially while keeping the HDL up and the LDL down. I already eat a ton of organic butter!

    I tried pregnenolone to try to pick up the steroid pathway one step down from cholesterol but it gave me a terrible headache and made me feel puffy. I may try again though with a different form at a lower dose. It's really the only thing I can think to try.
  8. Tammy

    Tammy Senior Member

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    when I was first diagnosed with CFS by a CFS specialist.......back in 96.......my cholesterol was extremely low. He was just as concerned about the low cholesterol as he was the low nk count. It was so long ago.......I will look to see if I still have some of those notes...........to see what he recommended.
  9. Chris

    Chris Senior Member

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    Ema, sorry, but the people recommending low fat basically vegan diets for heart disease are in no way recommending high Omega 6 or sugar or refined grains--quite the contrary. If the subject interests you, read Caldwell Esselstyn and Dean Ornish, and maybe look at the movie/DVD "Forks over Knives." These guys are not stupid, and they have documented successes. They may not have the whole truth, but noone yet does. And it seems to remain true that though the connection between cholesterol levels and heart disease is complex and not fully understood, but also that noone with a total cholesterol of under 150 has ever had a heart attack. Heart disease is still the biggest killer in the western world. Best, Chris
  10. Ema

    Ema Senior Member

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    Thanks for the links. I've read Ornish and watched the movie you mention...and I just don't agree. I don't personally believe that a vegan/vegetarian diet is healthful for anyone though I respect it as a moral choice.

    That said, I think most all could stand to be a little less meat-centric and eat a few more vegetables. Not every meal needs to have a preponderance of meat in my opinion, but we are evolved as omnivores for a reason and one of those reasons is our need for healthy cholesterol levels.
  11. jimells

    jimells Senior Member

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    A year ago a doctor wanted to test my lipids. I told her to test away, but I'm not taking statins, period. She didn't order the tests.

    thennt.com says:

    In Summary, for those who took the statin for 5 years (known heart disease):
    • 96% saw no benefit
    • 1.2% were helped by being saved from death
    • 2.6% were helped by preventing a repeat heart attack
    • 0.8% were helped by preventing a stroke
    • 0.6% were harmed by developing diabetes*
    • 10% were harmed by muscle damage
    for those who took the statin for 5 years (no prior heart disease):
    • 98% saw no benefit
    • 0% were helped by being saved from death
    • 1.6% were helped by preventing a heart attack
    • 0.4% were helped by preventing a stroke
    • 1.5% were harmed by developing diabetes*
    • 10% were harmed by muscle damage
    In Other Words:
    • None were helped (life saved)
    • 1 in 60 were helped (preventing heart attack)
    • 1 in 268 were helped (preventing stroke)
    • 1 in 67 were harmed (develop diabetes*)
    • 1 in 10 were harmed (muscle damage)
    The studies used to reach these conclusions are listed on the website. It's hard to believe they are still pushing these useless dangerous drugs. When it comes to statins, facts don't matter, research doesn't matter, adverse effects don't matter. Only Profit matters.
    dannybex and Valentijn like this.
  12. Tammy

    Tammy Senior Member

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    Good for you jimells............I wouldn't touch the statins with a ten ft. pole. i'm with yu.............I too......can't believe they are still pushing them. I saw a commercial the other day that recommended taking C0Q10 if you are taking statins. FINALLY.............it has been known for years now that the statins can deplete COQ10 which is very much needed! Years ago I remember watching a story on TV about a man who had just retired and was looking forward to fishing he said. His Dr. had put him on statins and the man noticed he was getting muscle weakness and mentioned it to his Dr. who basically told him not to worry. Long story short the man has irreversible muscle damage. He said it's hard to do anything that requires any amount of strength.............even fishing.

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