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  • High Cholesterol at 22?!

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    Old 10-19-2004, 06:27 PM   #1
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    Question High Cholesterol at 22?!

    I am really concerned about a recent cholesterol test I took. 2 years ago my cholesterol was pretty good (Total: 173, Tri: 73, HDL:53, LDL:105). However, I just had another test done and my results seem really high for only being 22 (Total: 210, Tri: 118, HDL:56, LDL:130). I'm really scared because the doctor didn't seem concerned, but the numbers seem really high to me. She didn't ask me to fast or anything either. I hadn't eaten anything earlier in the day since the appointment was around lunch time, but I did eat some french fries my mom had leftover about 30 minutes before the blood was taken. Could this have affected my results? Should I be worried or seek a second opinion? I'm female, petite (5,3"), weigh 115, and I exercise so I don't understand this. Please give me some advice. I hope this gives you enough information.

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    Old 10-19-2004, 07:49 PM   #2
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    Re: High Cholesterol at 22?!

    Your doctor's mostly right, you lucky girl.

    Your trigs are great, your HDL is quite good, and only your LDL is out of wack, and that only a bit. I'm not sure, but I think the fries would mostly affect the trigs, and your reading there was great.

    Bottom line, tweak your diet by lowering your saturated fat intake a bit, and cut back drastically on any trans fat and I bet your readings will be better than the ones two years earlier.

    Meanwhile at the ripe old age of 22 you've got about 20-30 years to correct your lipid levels, so relax, you're sitting in tall cotton.

    Old 10-20-2004, 02:27 PM   #3
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    Re: High Cholesterol at 22?!

    Your numbers aren't that bad at all. The desirable level is 200 or below and you're only 10 points over that. However, I can see where your concern is, since it's crept up there a little over the years, so just watch your diet, making sure you don't eat too much fat, and you should be ok

    Old 11-04-2004, 03:31 PM   #4
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    Smile Re: High Cholesterol at 22?!

    Thank you so much for your responses! They made me feel a lot better

    Old 11-05-2004, 04:38 AM   #5
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    Re: High Cholesterol at 22?!

    As far as I know cholesterol test requires 12 hours fasting. I think you shouldn't have eaten anything before the test. My doctor didn't tell me anything about fasting and I found out that only when i called the lab.

    Old 11-05-2004, 04:55 AM   #6
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    Re: High Cholesterol at 22?!

    Total normal levels of cholesterol should be under 200. 200 to 239 is borderline high; and 240 and higher is considered high.

    LDL normal levels of cholesterol, or "bad" cholesterol, should be under 130. If it's between 160 and 189, it's high, and if it's 190 or more, it's very high.

    HDL normal levels of cholesterol, should be over 40, and the higher, the better, because it helps protect against clogging of the arteries. The best would be to have it at about 60.

    Triglycerides, another fatty substance that increase the risk of heart disease and stroke, are too high if they're over 150.

    The most important factor for normal levels of cholesterol is the cholesterol ratio. These numbers help tell us whether more cholesterol is being stored in our cells or else is being broken down and removed from our body. That's why you can see heart attacks in people that have low total cholesterol levels. Their HDL is low as well, and as a result their ratio is high.

    To determine these ratios for yourself, simply divide your total cholesterol and LDL numbers by your HDL number.

    The normal levels of cholesterol ratios for total cholesterol to HDL should be below 4 as a general rule for both men and women. However a very good ratio is 3.5, excellent is 3.0 and fantastic is 2.6.

    If you can get your ratio down between 2.4 and 2.8, you can actually experience a reversal of heart disease.

    Whereas the normal levels of cholesterol ratios of LDL to HDL should be less than 2.5. This is the best indicator of risk of heart disease and stroke.

    Old 11-28-2004, 07:09 AM   #7
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    Re: High Cholesterol at 22?!

    Not much to worry about. I'm at your same levels with statins and I'm only 31! I would however caution you to watch it. Look your not going to get a heart attack (from your current lipid levels) in the next week or so . You are in a sense lucky that you may have discovered a trend early on. I'm not a doctor but would recommend you do the following:

    1. Get another reading (This time Fast!). You should fast for 10 hours each time you get tested in order to be consistent. You may have skewed your results.

    2. Ask your parents and any siblings if they have had any issues. There are two types of individuals with high cholesterol; genetic and poor habits. The Genetic side is by far a bigger population. You probably know people who can eat 20 cheese burgers, and have total cholesterol in the 140's. You are obviously not one of them and deal with it you never will be!

    3. #2 isn't saying diet won't work. In fact it's the second best natural thing you can do. That being said, living on salads and (non shell fish) sushi, is not living, so there is a give and take, the question is how much give and take you want to live with. Since you are at the high end of a normal lipid level (or the low end of the risky levels) eating can make a difference.

    4. #1 way to lower cholesteral is exercise. I find when I start exercising (which unforutnately is a three month spurt because I usually take it to an extreme and hurt myself and end up starting all over again). You will shed cholesterol numbers. All you need to do is get your heart rate pumping for 30 minutes four times a week. I bet this alone will drop you into the 170 total number. Also may shed a few unwanted pounds.

    5. This message board kills the statins - I don't share their view. You shouldn't use statins until you have exhausted all natural remedies. I am currently exploring the idea of using policosonal. If you end up exercising and eating right, trying a few vitamins, etc.. etc... and you cholesterol remains over 200 (total). You may want to explore this. If you are like me, you will find that the total level of cholersterol may end up sticking (no pun intended) as you get older. When I was 25 I had a level of over 300. I brought it down naturally to 186. However that 186 was basically eating nothing for 6 months (except sushi). I also had a massive exercise regiment that could have trained me back into wrestling competition. (I ended up dropping my body fat to under 8%). Offcourse this couldn't last (I'm a CPA not a trainer), and my cholesteral slowly went back up to about 260-270 level. I am convinced without the statins (my 5'8, 165 pound body would be at about 390!).

    6. If you end up on statins don't panic, they are probably not going to hurt you. Once you go on them you should have your liver functions tested every 6 months and no longer than one year. If everything is normal (which is the case for about 99% of patients), congrats medical science and those mean drug companies extended your life. If you have adverse reactions, then you need to visit other options.

    7. In summary don't panic you are probably a tweek away from being fine, if things don't improve as you get older there are many options thanks to medical science. Don't be afraid to try natural things, they can't hurt. I dropped my cholesteral from 286 to 178 about a year ago. Dr. upped my dosage but I told him to hold off for 3 months as I wanted to try some other things (Losing 15 pounds a little exercise and taking every vitamin under the sun along with 20mg of provachol) After I got tested again Dr. said continue what you are doing. (off course I didn't and things got worse). The point here is you can do a lot naturally, if you are more consistent than I am this will be a great asset to you.. There are many options out there to fix this, all I can say is moniter the problem and don't stress out (that also causes cholesteral problems!).

    Good luck for a healthy life!

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