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High Cholesterol Message Board

High Cholesterol Board Index

Originally posted by LyndaC:


Thanks for your quick reply. Your info was good news for me. The triglyceride/HDL ratio was something I wasn't aware of.

As to my depends on whether my weight is up or down. Basically, I don't eat red meat (although I love it). I eat salmon once a week and skinless chicken breast twice a week. I use only olive oil in cooking. I rarely eat fried foods, once in a while I have buffalo wings. I eat at least five servings of fruit and veggies a day. Lots of water, no caffeine. Sounds great right? Well, my downfalls are Italian bread,chocolate chip cookies, pizza, and vanilla bean ice cream. If I would leave those items alone, I could lose the excess weight.

I might also add that I take 38 capsules of various vitamins, herbs, and minerals a day...BetaCarotene, B6, B12, C, D, E, Zinc, CoEnzyme Q10, Korean Ginseng, Selenium, Alpha Lipoic Acid, Garlic, Soya Lecithin, Magnesium, Calcium, Ginkgo Biloba, Grape-Seed Extract, Green Tea Extract, Glucosamine, Biotin, Folic Acid, Chromium, MSM, Acidolphilus, Soy Isoflavones, Flaxseed Oil, Horse Chestnut, and a low dosage (25 mg.) of Niacin...high dosages cause flushing. Maybe some of these are helpful in keeping the triglycerides low?
Am planning to add 600 mg. Red Yeast Rice.

Alan S,
You are right that there are more than 1 type of LDL. In fact, there are SEVEN. They are classified by diameter size. People that have the smallest and most dense LDL are referred to as having Pattern B LDL, which is the best known predictor of having a heart attack. It is even better than looking at pure LDL numbers (which are only 47% predictive). The people with large, boyant, fluffy LDL are referred to as Pattern A. For these folks, their LDL level doesn't really matter since their LDL is not as harmful. For example, if 2 people have an LDL of 100, the pattern B person has about 30 times higher risk of having a heart attack than the pattern A person.

Regarding niacin, it takes about 1,000mg/day to begin to see effect on lipids. It will raise HDL by about 30%, lower LDL by about 20% and lower Tryglicerides by about 30%. As for flushing, there is a new extended release niacin (NIASPAN)that reduces flushing to about 2 times per month. It is taken once a day, at bedtime, so you will probably be asleep if you flush. This is the only FDA approved niacin for treating lipids. Also, most insurance covers Niaspan so it may cost less than over the counter niacin. The FDA approved it because it will not kill your liver like the "Flushless" niacins.

Lp(a) or "LP little a" (see my screen name) is actually an LDL with a "protein tail" attached to it. Lp(a) levels are the #2 predictor of heart attacks. Lp(A) is independent of LDL levels, so even if your LDL is less than 100, this can still kill you. Niacin is the best medicine for Lp(a), which can reduce it by 30%.

Lp(a) and LDL density are hereditary. If you have a family history of heart attacks with "normal" cholesterol levels or if you have Type 2 Diabetes, you have these genes. Niacin is the only treatment for these conditions.

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