Living with High Cholesterol?

23rd Jun 2012

Has your Doctor told you that your blood cholesterol readings are too high?

If so, the first weapon that the Doctor will reach for in the fight against high blood cholesterol will probably be a Statin medication.

Statins are one of the most widely prescribed classes of drugs in the world, and include drugs such as Simvastatin, Atorvastatin, Pravastatin, Rosuvastatin.

Naturally occuring Statins called Mevastatin and Lovastatin are also found in Red Yeast Rice. Lovastatin has since been synthesised and marketed by Merck as Mevacor, leading to calls for over the counter sales of Red Yeast Rice (a food product) to be banned in the USA.

All very well and good if you are looking for the "magic bullet" to lower your cholesterol without any input from yourself.

Lets go back to your cholesterol reading. The reading is made up of 3 numbers and 2 ratios

  • LDL - Ideally between 2.4 - 3.83 mmol/L (92 - 148 mg/dL)
  • HDL - Ideally between 1.05 - 2.25 mmol/L (40 - 87 mg/dL)
  • Total Cholesterol - Ideally between 4.34 - 5.91 mmol/L (167 - 228 mg/dL)
  • Ratio between Total & HDL - Ideally LOWER than 4.5
  • Ratio between LDL & HDL - Ideally LOWER than 2.8
LDL - Low Density Lipoprotein - Fluffy, Nebulous, Sticky - The BAD kind of cholesterol which can aggregate & stick to blood vessel walls causing Atherosclerosis
HDL - High Density Lipoprotein - Concentrated, Dense - The GOOD kind of cholesterol that we need to build cells, scavenge & clean up LDL, & is involved in the production of hormones
Total - We NEED cholestrol to survive and function efficiently. But the total amount and how that total is made up is crucial.
Other more specific Blood Cholesterol tests
  • Lp(a) - Lipoprotein a - A marker of heriditary risk of athrosclerosis - Lower the better -Ideally less than 550mg/L
  • Apo B - Apoprotein B - A specific type of LDL - Ideally less than 1.2g/L
  • hsCRP - High Sensivity C-Reactive Protein A measure of inflammation which can indicate an increased risk of atherosclerosis - Ideally less than 5mg/L

However there are a number of things you can do to improve your cholesterol numbers.

  1. Exercise more - Increases HDL & lowers LDL - Click here to watch an amazing video
  2. Reduce daily intake of Saturated Fats (Non-lean Meat & Full-fat Dairy) - Will assist in reducing LDL & increasing HDL
  3. Increase daily intake of Dietary Fibre - Reduces Apo B & LDL
  4. Reduce daily intake of fresh Coffee (Expresso & Plunger) - Coffee can increase LDL
  5. Daily Supplementation (In alphabetical order)
  • Co-enzyme Q10 (Anti-oxidant) - Click here for Clinicians Co-enzyme Q10
  • Garlic
  • Omega 3 Fish Oils - Reduces LDL & hsCRP levels - Click here for Good Health Omega 3
  • Vitamin B3 Nicotinic Acid - Reduces Lp(a)
  • Vitamin C (Anti-oxidant)
  • Red Yeast Rice - Natural Statins which reduce LDL