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My Fight with High Cholesterol!


I have been fighting with high cholesterol for years.  I am one of the very unlucky types of people that have both things working against me, and that's diet and hereditary problems.  I have been blessed with both factors, meaning that no matter how well I eat, my body continues to produce high levels of cholesterol.


Since the diet and exercise regimen is the first thing all doctors recommend, I won't spend time talking about that except from the standpoint that you need to try that first.  I found for myself, that through tracking my own numbers over many years now, that a diet such as the Atkins and the South Beach Diets, which are low in carbohydrates worked the best for me, but I also admit that I have difficulty staying away from my favorite pasta's and breads which makes sticking to these diets very difficult.  I also can't say that for everyone these will work and you should discuss any diet with your doctor before trying them.


I will however make these suggestions for trying to get your numbers down.  In my case, it requires multiple therapies to keep my numbers near where they should be.  I started out with total cholesterol numbers in the high 300's, LDL, of almost 200, HDL below 30, and triglycerides in the range of 800 - 1000.  These conditions helped lead to my surgeries which were a bypass of the left arm and carotid artery surgery at the ripe old age of 37.  Drastic steps were needed.  Luckily I have a doctor who is very up on the current studies and is willing to experiment as to what works for me.  Another piece of advice I will give is buy life insurance as young as possible and don't give it up no matter what.  Once you have had a severe surgery like I had, "cheap life insurance" and for that matter any "life insurance" is virtually no longer and option, even at high prices.  Buy cheap life insurance and keep it up to date while you're healthy.  Even if you have buy cheap term life insurance, do it.


I currently have a LDL number of 75 - 80 (my goal is 60), and a HDL number of 43 (goal is also 60).My current drug therapy includes Tricor 140 mg., Lipitor 80 mg., Niaspan 2000mg., Toprol 25 mg. (for borderline hypertensive blood pressure levels), and these have so far produced pretty good results.  The only side effects I have so far experienced after 7 years is from the Niaspan, which is a bad case of what I call "crawling skin".  It's like having severe hot flashes with prickly heat.  As long as I take it at night with my aspirin dose, it doesn't seem to be too bad.  Many people won't take it it because of these side effects but the increase of 8 points in my HDL was enough for me to keep going.  I also will be switching to Crestor in about 3 weeks, as their new numbers show it to be outperforming Lipitor at the moment so on with the case study!  Will I be on Crestor, Lipitor, or a lipid the rest of my life?  Probably.  Is that true for everyone?  Not necessarily.  For many people a decent weight loss or other change in diet can make it possible for them to get off the drug.  That simply hasn't worked for me.


Best advice I can give, is "know your numbers".  If you've never been tested, get tested and "know your numbers"!  It's a condition that you can't see or feel (until it's too late and you've had an episode or even a heart attack) like many other illnesses.  And lastly, find a doctor who cares and knows the latest information as that valuable, and it doesn't hurt to do some research on your own as well.  I always joke with my doctor that I am a case study for him and I am to an extent, but what I have is not rare and could happen to you too.  "Know your numbers"!  If you are looking to control all this and loose weight the safe way which is slowly, check out my One Pound Ago blog.



written by: WM8C, April 10th, 2006  Not for use without permission.


Up ] [ My Fight With Cholesterol ] Debt Management ] Panic Disorder ] Breast Cancer Awareness ] Breast Biopsy ] Acne Treatment ] Winsor Pilates ] Michigan Car Insurance ] Satellite Radio ] Computer Recycling ] Weight Loss Exercise ]


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