I have an LDL of 185 and an HDL of 46 with Triglycerides of 109. I have always had an LDL that seemed abnormal for my age, size and lifestyle, even when I was in my twenties. But recently, the numbers have moved significantly into the high category. I have read that this can happen with hormone shifts and also with thyroid issues.
I have hypothyroidism and am on medication for that. My blood pressure and heartrate are considered low. I am at a normal weight, exercise regularly (teach fitness classes), do not smoke, sleep 9 hours each night and eat healthily (try to follow the Mediterranean diet), etc. My doctor wants to put my on a statin but I do not wish to take medication, I am already taking medication for hypothyroidism and bio-identical hormones for perimenopausal symptoms.
I would appreciate any insight.
Here are two options to lower LDL cholesterol:
Increase dietary fiber, especially soluble fiber. Eat 25-35 grams of fiber daily and of this at least 15 grams should be soluble fiber. Research has shown that for every 1-2 grams of daily soluble fiber intake, LDL (bad) cholesterol is lowered 1%. Learn more here: Dietary Fiber: 4 Tips to Lower Cholesterol with Fiber
Eat plant sterols everyday. Eating 2 grams of plant sterols each day will on average reduce your LDL cholesterol 10%.
Plant sterols occur naturally in foods at low levels, so some foods have been fortified. Here is the amount of plant sterols in some foods:Avocados, 1 small 0.13 gramsCorn Oil, 1 tablespoon 0.13 gramsSunflower Seeds, 1/4 cup 0.19 gramsOat Bar with plant sterols, 1 bar 0.4 gramsOrange Juice with plant sterols 1.0 gramVegetable oil spread with plant sterols, 1 tablespoon 1.0 gram
You're doing a great job following a well-balance heart healthy lifestyle! The Mediterranean is a great diet to model as you strive for heart health.
All the best,
Lisa Nelson, RD
Lower Cholesterol Naturally