Dieting with Obstacles - Cholesterol & Weightloss?

View Full Version : Cholesterol & Weightloss?

10-09-2009, 12:27 AM
My doctor just ran blood tests and says my cholesterol levels are too high at 263 (LDL, I think); I did research on the net and ideally they should be 200 or less. He wants me to take pills for them; and he gave me a prescrip for CRESTOR. Anyone else been on this while dieting? Anyone else been on this brand? Did it help? Did your levels go down, and how long did it take?

I am also on Metformin and they make me feel sick sometimes if I don't eat enuff, and hope to get off them soon. I understand that these Cholesterol pills stop your liver from producing too much of a kind of fat called -- tada ... "Cholesterol". I hate taking meds, and some of my friends say that they won't take them becuz some of them aren't safe from what they have heard. Anyone else heard that??? :?:

BUT... if they are safe and will help me, maybe I should take them just until my levels are better. I am also going to try and get info how to eat better too, so I can get the levels down through diet, so I don't have to take the meds. Funny, my doctor never even suggested that; just got out the prescription pad ...

Thanks ... :hug:ROSEBUD:hug:

10-09-2009, 07:29 AM
My DBF was told by a Dr that his cholesterol was high. Neither diet nor exercise was ever discussed. Dr. wrote a prescription for Lipitor and told DBF to fill it. This decision was based on DBF's "family history" (Mom, 3 brother's & 1 sister all on statin drugs for cholesterol). I told DBF NO WAY! He began eating low carb and taking supplements. These are his before & after numbers:

Total Cholesterol - 275
LDL - 191
HDL - 47
Triglycerides - 184

Total Cholesterol - 195
LDL - 123
HDL - 50
Triglycerides - 114

You may also be interested in this article:

10-09-2009, 06:14 PM
THANKS JERSEYGIRL ~ I think I made a mistake about the #'s ... they are supposed to read that I had a level of 2.63 LDL and it should be 2.0 or less. I don't know if that matters, but I have heard others say the same thing as you, so I was very concerned ...

I will definintely check out that article and I want to try and see if I can get my numbers down on my own (and my weight too). As much as I appreciate that this new doctor is more aggressive in his care, I am concerned that he is too aggressive for me -- wanting me to take a bunch of meds and have WLS, which I don't want to have. I am having to really push my heels down with this guy ... :lol:

Thanks again ... I appreciate that you answered my post :hug:

PSP Orange
10-12-2009, 08:04 AM

OMG !!! Everyone should read this article....
Awesome link !!!!!

The Orange One

10-12-2009, 12:19 PM
Hi, Rosebud,

My DH was on crestor for a couple years, but had to have blood tests every 6 months to check liver function. We wondered when it was prescribed why he wasn't given a "lower the numbers by changing your diet" option, but never got an answer. Now that we've changed many of our eating habits and also changed doctors, he's off the crestor (which our insurance quit paying for, also) and trying a year of no med to see what happens to the cholesterol levels. He still has to take his blood pressure meds, though.

When I started my weight loss journey a little over a year ago, my cholesterol levels were slightly elevated, but after only a month of eating more healthily, they were back in the normal range, so I highly recommend trying diet modification first, but only you know your complete medical history to really make the best decision.

Whatever you decide, I'm pulling for you!!

10-12-2009, 01:31 PM
I am on blood pressure medication and a statin for high cholesterol. To my doctors credit she did try to get me to lose wt but when I didn't she put me on these meds. She told me if my numbers go down she would take me off the meds--be happy to she said. When she told me I was prediabetic this summer that's when I got serious about losing wt. I have a appt later this month and I'm hoping that with a 35# wt loss my blood work will look better and she will take me off the meds. I'll be sure to let everyone know if she does!

I think the key here is having an open discussion with your doctor. So many doctors get tired of telling their patients what they need to do only to be ignored. I'm not saying that's what you did but I think that's why they often just prescribe meds.

Like someone else mentioned this is your decision. Discuss it with your doctor. Make him inform you of all risks and benefits. If he won't,then find someone new (I know with insurance it can be difficult at times).

Best wishes to you!

10-12-2009, 01:42 PM
Diet can certainly influence your cholesterol. I didn't have high cholesterol but my cholesterol has certainly gone down.

The Engine 2 diet is an interesting book to read as it is about a firehouse in Texas that lowered their cholesterol (and weight) through a healthy diet.

10-12-2009, 03:02 PM
THANKS FOR YOUR INPUT LADIES ~ I really appreciate it! This is my new doctor that I just starting seeing (as my previous family physician moved away), so we really don't know each other that well yet. To be fair, it was kinda a rushed thing, as I was on my way out of the office, and they were way behind (over 2 hours); and his staff had forgotten to give him the results from my tests, so he asked me to wait while he quickly looked at the results, so it was off the cuff so2speak. He is a nice man, and a very conscientious doctor from what I can tell ...

I really need more time to talk to him about these things; as I would prefer to try and get my levels down thru diet and exercise first, and if that doesn't work, then I'd be glad to try some meds for a short while. I don't know if there are any other kinds besides these 'STATIN' drugs that work; and that don't have so many serious side effects like liver and muscle damage, esp when my #'s aren't really that high.

He said that they were great considering I wasn't taking any meds, but that they needed to come down just a bit more becuz of my other health issues. Now I could change my diet and omit some more things like pork products even more and cut back on my dairy fat and so forth for a while to see if that helps. I have just increased my walking lately as well; adding another walk after dinner with my DH for 3-4 nights a week.

NELIE ~ thanks for that reminder; yes, I have heard of them and I even visited their site -- where they give you their favorite recipes for free. Some of them are a bit expensive for the ingredients, BUT they can always be modified somewhat, I think.

ANYHOW, thanks again ~ I am very grateful for all your opinions and support ... :hug:

10-12-2009, 03:58 PM
There are a few books you might want to consider reading....Good Calories Bad Calories By Gary Taubes and The Great Cholesterol Con by Dr. Malcolm Kendrick.
I agree, you need to discuss your concerns with your Dr. and tell him if all else fails, you would consider the med's. If he seem's unreasonable where this is concerned, I would find another Dr.
Sugar is the culprit when it comes to high cholesterol. The AHA is finally starting to acknowledge this....they released a statement recently that people should reduce their sugar intake! Do wonders ever cease!!!

10-12-2009, 05:41 PM
THANKS, JERSEY ~ yes, I read that article by that doctor that thinks sugar is the real culprit of high cholesterol; so I'll be more dilegent in that area as well. I'm glad to see that the "powers that B" are now in some agreement, as it is sure confusing for the patients. I do try to eat very lean meats and remove most, if not all the skin off our poultry now, and lately, have been increasing the fish in our diet too. So I will try to get that sugar down a bit more and see what happens.

Since our body produces 80% of the cholesterol that is in our blood; it makes you wonder if it is the food or our bodies -- BUT if it is SUGAR that is really causing the weight-gain, fat, and cholesterol problem, then we need to focus more on that. I know that I need to lose some more weight, so I'll have to work harder on that issue too.

That is really what I was wondering from the start -- if I could lower my levels thru diet, exercise, and weightloss combined? It seems that many people have done it, so that means I should be able to also! PS -- I've cut out most of my sugar; and I'm lowering those grain carbs down bit by bit ...

THANKS AGAIN, for all the references too ... :hug:

10-13-2009, 02:24 PM
I think many doctors know the majority of their patients won't do the diet and exercise thing so have given up recommending it.

10-14-2009, 07:20 AM
I think many doctors know the majority of their patients won't do the diet and exercise thing so have given up recommending it.

Exactly why its up to us as patients to tell our Dr. we are interested in other options rather than to just be put on medication that may be avoidable:)

Suzanne 3FC
10-16-2009, 09:55 PM
The AHA states that excess sugar leads to obesity, and obesity is often accompanied by high triglycerides, high blood pressure, and a lot of other conditions related to heart health. Weight loss alone can cause a drop in cholesterol regardless of the diet chosen, but maintaining it will likely involve more changes.

The World Health Organization has long recommended limiting added sugar intake to 10% of the diet, with studies showing that the lower added sugars lead to healthier lives. The AHA recommendation is even less, which is a good thing. Keep in mind that this is just in regards to added sugars (just as the AHA recommendation) and does not intend for you to count or limit naturally occurring sugar such as in fruit, vegetables, grains, etc. Those foods are far too valuable sources of fiber, antioxidants, vitamins and micro-nutrients that you won't get from meat or fat groups.

Years of published well documented studies have shown direct connection between saturated animal fats and cholesterol. Cut down on that, and you will be in very good shape. Also, recent studies have shown that animal fats are linked to pancreatic cancer. Exercise also helps reduce cholesterol. I agree that this should be the first course of action instead of drugs. I'm really surprised they are so quickly prescribed :(

I'll second nelie's recommendation of Engine 2. The diet resulted in massive drops in cholesterol for everyone that followed it. It's not for everyone since it's vegan, though, and might take some adjusting. They offer a version of the diet that is not vegan and allows for some lean meats.

Good luck :)

10-16-2009, 10:25 PM
THANKS SUZANNE ~ I appreciate your input and I have some of the recipes from the Engine 2 plan as well; we don't mind having a vegan or vegetarian meal now and then really. I have switched to whole grains and do keep a minimum in my plan; in the past my hair fell out when I went on a too low-carb plan, and I have vitamin deficiencies that I have to take supplements for, so I do have to be careful. I am going to try cutting down a bit of both the meat fats and sugar to see what effect that has on my numbers, as I don't have that far to go to get where my doctor wants me to be (from 2.63 down to 2.00).

Once again, thanks for taking the time to share that great info with us all ... :hug:

10-17-2009, 01:39 PM
My doctor put me on Crestor without recommending a diet. My carotid artery (only one side,) is blocked and no if's and's or but's! Thank goodness I don't have any side effects. Ifd I could lose weight I would. ;)I don't mind eating vegetarian but must cook also for hubby and he won't. I just need to get a backbone? and some willpower?:devil: Need lots of moral support. I will look into the Engine 2 diet but to tell the truth I have so many books on eating healthy already. Am going to pull out my vegetarian life cookbook and do myself a big favor. I see the doc again in 2 weeks. Sure don't want to have a stroke. Funny, but tests done for heart all show arteries there are o k. Help!:carrot:

10-17-2009, 11:22 PM
LIZABETH2 ~ I'm thinking of adding a few vegetarian recipes in my week to see if that helps; varying it each day (one day lunch; one day dinner) -- a little bit at a time so it is easier to adjust. I am already cutting my sugar down, so hopefully by watching both, it will make a difference.

All we can do is keep working at it the best we can, right? I can think of a few ways that I can improve a little more; and we'll see how it goes after that. I really feel for your situation; it can be very confusing and frustrating for the patients ... I mean if it was EZ, none of us would have these issues in the first place, I guess. ^Prayers^ that they will help you find a solution for that valve too ... :hug:

10-19-2009, 01:17 PM
Thanks everyone for good input! Rosebud, I am going to try two nights vegetarian. I have some really good cookbooks and one is low carb. I love veggies and if I get to the farmer's market today I will have more thab rhutabegga and green zucchini in house when I get up hungry at night.
After reading some good web sites on Crestor, I stopped taking it yesterday to see if the hurting stops.:^:So many meds to stop what it was causing. Already I feel a bit of a difference. Chol. wasn't that high in the 1st place and who know if as we get older it is meant to be that way? :carrot: Any way, plans are in the works to get healthy. I will look into exercise, diet and alternative means. I wish us all luck. Thanks!:D

10-27-2009, 09:58 PM
Thanks for the Engine 2 recommendation. My public library claims to have it, but waiting for it to be returned...

10-28-2009, 12:08 AM
I got some of their recipes off their online site; and some of them aren't too bad -- you could check in there until your book is available ...