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 Post subject: high cholesterol foods
PostPosted: Mon Oct 14, 2013 10:19 am 
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Tofu Pup

Joined: Mon Oct 14, 2013 6:29 am
Posts: 6
Hi all.
What is your opinion on consuming foods that have high cholesterol values? Can high cholesterol foods impact my cholesterol levels significantly?
The reason why I'm asking this is that my mother has increased cholesterol levels, but her diet does not include cholesterol rich foods. So she has high cholesterol levels due to genetic reasons, right?
I'm going to the docs office tomorrow and I will get my cholesterol levels checked.
Are there any super foods out there that can lower cholesterol levels significantly and are cheap and easily accessible (in local super market perhaps?)?

Tnx for replying!!


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 Post subject: Re: high cholesterol foods
PostPosted: Mon Oct 14, 2013 10:39 am 
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Are you vegan? Is your mother vegan?

Vegan food is cholesterol free so vegans don't get cholesterol from their diet. There is definitely a genetic component to high cholesterol though but cutting out dietary cholesterol can sometimes help. Things like exercise increase good cholesterol and soluble fiber helps clear out bad cholesterol. Oatmeal is a pretty cheap source of soluble fiber.

My cholesterol levels dropped pretty dramatically after becoming vegan but 6 years later, my cholesterol levels are at my pre-vegan levels.

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 Post subject: Re: high cholesterol foods
PostPosted: Mon Oct 14, 2013 12:04 pm 
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My husband is also genetically predisposed to high cholesterol. His doctor tried him on Lipitor but they didn't like the side affects. So she switched him to red yeast rice supplements that he can get at Walgreens, Whole Foods, even Walmart carried them. That controls his numbers very well without wacky side affects. I should also note that this is a guy who walks 4 miles daily although he does seem unable to give up the diet soda pop. I really wish he wouldn't drink that crepe.


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 Post subject: Re: high cholesterol foods
PostPosted: Mon Oct 14, 2013 2:55 pm 
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Tofu Pup

Joined: Mon Oct 14, 2013 6:29 am
Posts: 6
Thanks for getting back to me.
See that's the deal. I'm not vegan, but I am thinking of bceoming one. My mother isn't vegan either. I am really worried because I do not want to have any health problems (that happen because of high cholesterol). On the other hand I don't want to look like a hypochonder, but still, better to act sooner than later, right? I looked for cholesterol lowering foods and found this:

Walnuts and hazelnuts Nuts contain a lot of unsaturated fats, vitamin E and magnesium. Nuts also contain omega-3 fatty acids, which also affect the health of blood vessels. Because this food is very rich in calories enjoy it in smaller quantities.

Garlic Garlic has many healing effects and besides all it lowers cholesterol, blood pressure, risk of blood clots and acts as an excellent antioxidant. One clove of garlic per day is advised.

Avocado Among all kinds of fruit the amount of fat is highest in avocados. Three-quarters of fat found in avocado is non saturated fat. Avocados contain oleic acid, which helps lowering cholesterol and is an ideal food for those who cannot consume fat of animal origin.

Blueberries Due to its high content of antioxidants, blueberries will help lower high cholesterol.

Fish Fish are full of omega-3 fatty acids, which lower bad cholesterol (LDL) and increase good cholesterol (HDL). Include fish meat in your diet at least twice a week. Healthiest fish are sardines, salmon, mackerel and trout.

Flaxseed Results of the survey, which was conducted at Iowa State University in USA have shown that a daily intake of three tablespoons of flaxseed (oil) reduces high cholesterol by 10 percent in three months. Flaxseed is a rich source of omega-3 fatty acids and also contains magnesium, manganese, iron, and vitamin E.

Olives and olive oil Olive oil contains just the right combination of antioxidants that reduces bad cholesterol (LDL) and leaves harmless cholesterol (HDL) intact. Doctors advise to eat two tablespoons of olive oil per day.
(taken from this article on cholesterol lowering foods)

Do you include any of these in your diet (excluding fish, of course)?

Although I'm not a fan of fish, I might still give them a try. I already use olive oil for baking, but I mostly use coconut oil (because it's said the be healthier - more stable at high temperatures). I love walnuts, but I guess I eat them too rarely. Avocado was never my favorite fruit (I can't even recall when was the last time I had a piece of avocado). Blueberries are tasty, but usually very expensive - at least in my region.
Anyway, I'm measuring my cholesterol levels tomorrow, so we will see than how to proceed. Oh by the way - I'm a male, 28 years old, with a BMI around 25 (a bit too much).


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 Post subject: Re: high cholesterol foods
PostPosted: Mon Oct 14, 2013 3:46 pm 
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Well, there is the latest news that fish oil may be linked to prostate cancer. There are vegan forms of omega 3s and I'm of the opinion that you shouldn't force yourself to eat things you don't like.

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 Post subject: Re: high cholesterol foods
PostPosted: Mon Oct 14, 2013 4:26 pm 
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Semen Strong
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snarkyvegan wrote:
My husband is also genetically predisposed to high cholesterol. His doctor tried him on Lipitor but they didn't like the side affects. So she switched him to red yeast rice supplements that he can get at Walgreens, Whole Foods, even Walmart carried them. That controls his numbers very well without wacky side affects. I should also note that this is a guy who walks 4 miles daily although he does seem unable to give up the diet soda pop. I really wish he wouldn't drink that crepe.


Thank you for the info on red yeast rice supplements. I have genetic predispositions to high cholesterol as well and would love to try something besides Lipitor.

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 Post subject: Re: high cholesterol foods
PostPosted: Tue Oct 15, 2013 3:17 pm 
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My doc first told me to start taking red yeast rice about 5 years ago, and taking just a quarter strength (1 of the 600 mg capsules) a day keeps my numbers below 180. At first I was buying them at the local GNC but switched to a brand on Amazon (Nature's Way) that was much cheaper and smelled better.

My on-going problem has now been triglycerides, and just last week my doc handed me a prescription for Lovaza, super-refined fish oil capsules. He also recommended the Mediterranean diet instead of Dr. Esselstyn's heart-healthy plan. I came right out and asked "So you want me to drop the whole foods plant based no added sugar-oil-salt food plan and eat beef, pork, fish and chicken and pour oil all over my food and you assume that's going to bring my cholesterol and triglyceride levels *down*?? Are you crazy??" He shook his head, mumbled, wrote something in my chart (probably about me being combative and non-compliant - again). I told him I'll stick with the food plan I'm on and double up on the ground flax seed, a product that has natural Omega 3's and is far safer than fish oil, no matter how refined it is. 2 tablespoons of the flax has the same amount of Omega 3's as those 4 fish pills.

When I got home I looked up the med he wants me on and see it's only for people with super-high triglycerides, over 500. I don't think my trigs at 220 qualify as needing this stuff.

At one point during the exam the student doc working under my doc questioned my comment that excess fruit and whole grain flour products can raise trigs so I'll cut back on those, and she looked down her nose at me and asked what am I, a doctor or dietician or something, who says these things raise trigs? She claimed only fats and oils raise them. I rambled off a few vegan docs' names and told her to pick up any nutrition book and she'll see I'm right. She then whipped out her cell phone and started looking at Dr. Esselstyn's site's FAQ's and said he's got to be wrong. (sigh)

I cringe at the future of medical care!


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 Post subject: Re: high cholesterol foods
PostPosted: Tue Oct 15, 2013 3:33 pm 
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Ugh Veggiesue, what a frustrating experience!

Triglycerides are the bane of my existence as well. I cannot get those numbers down. Do you have any tips?

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 Post subject: Re: high cholesterol foods
PostPosted: Tue Oct 15, 2013 3:34 pm 
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Well I can't find any indication that fruits or whole grains can raise triglycerides but alcohol and refined carbs seem to have an affect. Exercise again lowers triglycerides. I searched PubMed and didn't see any indication that fruits and whole grains increased triglycerides but I did find quite a few recent studies that indicated that whole grains, dried fruit consumption, fruit juice consumption and at regular fruits all decreased triglycerides and other coronary health markers. So if Esseltyn says fruit consumption and whole grains increase triglycerides, I'd like to know which studies he bases those off of.

If all else fails with dietary changes, it seems that exercise and weight loss are biggest contributors to lowering triglycerides.

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 Post subject: Re: high cholesterol foods
PostPosted: Tue Oct 15, 2013 3:44 pm 
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Tofu Pup

Joined: Mon Oct 14, 2013 6:29 am
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Hey everyone! I see you stole my thread already :-)
Anyway I've been to the doctors office today and I had my blood checked for cholesterol levels. He said he will call me when results will be ready.
So right now I am waiting for results. As far as I understand, normal cholesterol levels are something like this:
Normal cholesterol level is anything below 90 mg/dl (5 mmol/l) for men and women, or below 72 mg/dl (4 mmol/l) for patients with cardiovascular disease or diabetes.
Normal HDL cholesterol level is above 19.8 mg/dl (1,1 mmol/l) for men and above 23,4 mg/dl (1,3 mmol/l) for women.
Normal LDL cholesterol level is below 54 mg/dl (3 mmol/l) for men and women, and below 36 mg/dl (2 mmol/l) for patients who suffer from cardiovascular disease or diabetes.
We will see.

And, thanks for the information on fish oil. Yes, I generally don't eat things I don't like. But you know, when we were kids, we didn't like anti-cough syrup either, but we had to eat it anyway :-)


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 Post subject: Re: high cholesterol foods
PostPosted: Tue Oct 15, 2013 4:57 pm 
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your number are kind of off, or at least your conversion from mmol to mg are off.

This has both mg/dl and mmol/L

http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/choles ... ls/CL00001

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 Post subject: Re: high cholesterol foods
PostPosted: Tue Oct 15, 2013 5:33 pm 
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when mr. carrot's triglycerides were high, his doc suggested niacin. (must have helped, cause he hasn't had any issue since then, and he didn't use it for all that long, either.)

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 Post subject: Re: high cholesterol foods
PostPosted: Tue Oct 15, 2013 5:47 pm 
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If niacin helps, then I'm guessing nutritional yeast is a good supplement as well?

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 Post subject: Re: high cholesterol foods
PostPosted: Tue Oct 15, 2013 8:28 pm 
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Generally they recommend crazy high doses of niacin, not like the amounts you'd have in nooch. My mother did the niacin thing for awhile before going on statins.

My triglycerides are also really high as of last testing. Hoping the mostly low carb lifestyle will be helpful in dealing with that. Apparently I have a genetic predisposition to very high triglycerides when total cholesterol is high. This makes sense to me because when my cholesterol was low-normal, my triglycerides were great. I didn't really eat so much differently, I just weighed a lot less and exercised a bit more. High triglycerides are supposed to be an independent risk factor for heart disease (so bad even if total cholesterol is normal), so that seems kinda important.

jjb85 - you can see from people's postings that veganism is not a cure-all for high cholesterol because it's a problem with a lot of variables , but it is true that vegans tend to have lower cholesterol levels than typical eaters (see here: http://www.veganhealth.org/articles/dxmarkers). See this for an example of research around using a strict vegetarian diet for cholesterol control (including a list of the mostly cheap and easily accessible "super foods" they used): http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/20 ... 072124.htm


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 Post subject: Re: high cholesterol foods
PostPosted: Thu Oct 17, 2013 11:01 pm 
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Tofu Pup

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I think that high cholesterol food is not good for health. Thanks for sharing such a nice supplement.


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 Post subject: Re: high cholesterol foods
PostPosted: Fri Oct 18, 2013 4:23 am 
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Tofu Pup

Joined: Mon Oct 14, 2013 6:29 am
Posts: 6
Hi everyone!
Got my results on cholesterol today! The doctor said that I have elevated cholesterol levels. He said that for my age (28), the expected cholesterol values are from 4.0 mmol/l to 5.2 mmol/l. My result was 7 mmol/l. I am meeting my doctor tomorrow where we will discuss on what to do to lower cholesterol levels.
Do you have any other suggestion for me regarding lowering cholesterol in a natural way? Has any of you been diagnosed with high cholesterol (except linanil)? What did you do to lower the numbers? Were you successful?
Should I switch to full vegan to drop my cholesterol?

Thanks for your help!!!


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 Post subject: Re: high cholesterol foods
PostPosted: Fri Oct 18, 2013 7:39 am 
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Oh I never said I had high cholesterol, mine was always in normal range but going vegan made me drop to below normal levels (my total cholesterol was 105 at one point) which have slowly risen over the years (now total is around 160-170).

You could try going vegan but also increase your soluble fiber as well including oatmeal.

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You are all a disgrace to vegans. Go f*ck yourselves, especially linanil.


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 Post subject: Re: high cholesterol foods
PostPosted: Fri Oct 18, 2013 9:43 am 
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It's not just cholesterol in food that has an effect on cholesterol in your body. It's also saturated fat (fats that are solid at room temperature), refined carbohydrates (sugar, white flour, and other foods stripped of their fiber), and alcohol. Smoking and being inactive also play a role. So just because you don't eat much cholesterol doesn't mean that the cause of your high cholesterol is solely from genetics.

I think everyone has mentioned the big helpful changes here: exercising more, losing excess weight, eating less saturated fat (which is most concentrated in animal fats), eating more fiber (and fruits, vegetables, and whole grains in general), and cutting down on alcohol. And the really big one is stopping smoking.


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 Post subject: Re: high cholesterol foods
PostPosted: Sat Oct 19, 2013 1:37 pm 
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Tofu Pup

Joined: Mon Oct 14, 2013 6:29 am
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I appreciate all your comments and replies!
Well, I don't smoke and I do some exercising every week (we play tennis with friends). I don't drink either. I only use nonsaturated fat (olive oil, pumpkin oil) when I cook. I don't consume much sugar (I only add it to my coffee). I may be a bit overweight, but my bmi is 25 which is not that high. I could always eat more fiber, that's true... Well, we'll see what the doctor has to say about my cholesterol...
Again, tnx for your input!

/edit: typo


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