• Jim Murtaugh Jim Murtaugh
    September 18, 2008
    How do I know if I need cholesterol medicine?
    Jim Murtaugh Jim Murtaugh
    September 18, 2008

    My most recent Lab test showed the following results for my blood work.

    Total cholesterol:  228

    Triglyerides: 65

    HDL Cholesterol: 74

    LDL Cholesterol: 141


    My ratios are good to ideal but my doctor recommends a low dose of Zocor to bring LDL below 130.  I really value my doctor's advice but I want to avoid medication if possible. Is there anything else I can do to bring the number down?



  • Neil MD
    Health Pro
    September 19, 2008
    Neil MD
    Health Pro
    September 19, 2008

    I agree with your doctor about lowering your LDL.  Though your ratios are good, evidence still suggests that the lower your LDL the less likely your are to suffer from heart disease.


    A few other things to consider.  


    One, you should stop smoking if you smoke.  Also, you should restrict your daily fat intake to no more than about 25% of your daily calories.  Try eating more green leafy vegetables, increasing soluble fiber, and eat more fish (try for about 2 times per week).


    I absolutely understand people's hesitancy to take medications.  We are constancy alerted to the fact that medications have side effects, and hear so much in the media about "dangerous" drugs.  


    Part of the the reason that medications require a prescription is so that a responsible physician can counsel you to the drug's proper uses, WEIGH THE BENEFITS AND DRAWBACKS of a particular drug, and monitor its side effects. As far as drugs go, the statin class of medications is remarkably safe.  


    If you redouble your efforts to get exercise 4x a week for at least 40 minutes, modify your diet as above and you can't get your cholesterol down, I'd trust your physician and take their advice about medication usage.  That's what you pay them for!


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