I took a blood test in late October, 2010 and then again at the end of March. I lowered my triglycerides by 99 points!!!!! but my total cholesterol and ldl levels went up between 40-60 points and my hdl went down 4 points. I have been trying to eat better and exercise too. I see that what I was doing helped the triglycerides A LOT, because 99 points in 5 months I think is pretty darn awesome, but I just can't understand how the "really bad guys" got lowered sooo much, and the other got worse?!?! Please help me...I am lost, and I don't have insurance, so I don't really have the option of seeing a doc because of lack of money. I want to get this down and I thought I was doing good, but made it mostly worse. ....????
Hello and thank you for your post on e health forum.
Making gradual and permanent changes in your diet and lifestyle can help you lower your cholesterol levels.
The main lifestyle changes to help you lower your cholesterol levels are:
1. Reduce fat and cholesterol in your diet.
2. Increase your level of physical activity.
3. Maintain a healthy body weight.
4. Stop smoking or moderating your sodium intake ( to control hypertension)
Here are a few tips for a diet to lower cholesterol levels.
A low cholesterol diet is not hard to follow. When you are shopping for such foods, be sure to look at the labels and choose those with low cholesterol content. Keep the following in mind:
1. Always eat plenty of fruits and vegetables--they are low in calories and fat. Additionally, these delicious foods will not raise your cholesterol levels.
2. FATS AND OILS: Try to lower your intake of saturated fats, since consuming foods with these fats could raise your cholesterol levels and place you at a higher risk of acquiring heart disease.
When cooking with oils, you should use olive and canola oils, which are particularly high in monounsaturated fats or vegetable oil, which is high in polyunsaturated fats. Unlike saturated and trans fats, unsaturated fats can help lower your cholesterol and keep your heart healthy.
3. Breads and Grains: Use whole grain foods instead of foods containing white flour. Recent studies have indicated that ingesting high amounts of carbohydrates can also raise cholesterol levels and increase your risk of heart disease - especially if you have diabetes.
4. Dairy : Use low fat or skim dairy products instead of regular, full-fat ones. You'll find that not only does this decrease your risk for heart disease, but it is also friendly to your waistline as well!
5. Meats: Cook with lean meats, such as chicken, fish or turkey, instead of red meat. Leaner meats will not raise your cholesterol levels as much as red meat. On fattier cuts of meat, make sure that you trim the fat off before consuming it.
EXERCISE: The best activities for reducing cholesterol are those that use the large muscles of your body, particularly those in your legs, making them demand more oxygen to do their work.
Examples of such "aerobic" activities include: Walking, Running, Rowing, Bicycling, Swimming, Skating, Cross-country skiing
In addition to these deliberate forms of exercise, try to include more activity throughout your day:
1. Park farther from work and walk the extra distance, or better yet, walk to work if possible.
2. When shopping, park farther away and walk more between stores.
3. Take walking breaks at work.
4. Take the stairs instead of the elevator.
5. Clean your own house.
6. Mow the lawn yourself.
7. Choose leisure-time activities that get you moving. Golfing, skiing, bowling, dancing, or playing tennis or basketball can all add to your overall activity level.
Following the above tips and suggestions will be helpful to improve your cholesterol levels.
"Ask a Doctor" questions are answered by certified physicians and other medical professionals.
For more information about experts participating in the "Ask a Doctor" Network, please visit our
medical experts page.
You may also visit our Cholesterol , for moderated patient to patient support and information.
The information provided on eHealth Forum is designed to improve, not replace, the relationship between a patient and his/her own physician.
Personal consultation(s) with a qualified medical professional is the proper means for diagnosing any medical condition.