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Elevated triglycerides in the lipid blood test. Can I control it by change in diet and exercise?

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Posted on Wed, 3 Oct 2012
Question: Hi I just got a lipid blood test and my numbers were good mostly, 185 total cholesterol, 97 ldl, 44 hdl. All liver functions were normal but my triglicerides were 229. I dont get it with all my other numbers being good. . Is this XXXXXXX enough to worry about. Im planning on walking more and being more careful with my diet i hope that is all I need to do.
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Answered by Dr. Anil Grover (35 minutes later)
Hi XXXXXXX,

Thank you for writing in.

Triglyceride as the only component of lipid profile being elevated is not uncommon occurrence. You have value which is one and half times normal. It is common and is proven by the fact that when associated with central obesity (obesity around waist) researchers have recommended a name for this combination "Hypertriglyceridemic Waist Syndrome". It is suggested that this should be recognized as independent risk factor for heart disease.

Yes, you will have to make changes in diet but more on refined carbohydrates which are main precursors of triglycerides. If the diet changes and more walk (brisk walk) does not take care of it, you may have to see the doctor and get a suitable drug prescribed.

In my experience Niacin preparation available on prescription works better. But your doctor may have other ideas depending on your medical history and drug intake. Nevertheless, the aim remains the same that to bring it below or around 150 mg%.

Hope this answers your query. If you have further queries I shall be pleased to answer.

Best wishes
Dr Anil Grover
Cardiologist

Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Prasad
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Follow up: Dr. Anil Grover (8 hours later)
Do you think a high protein diet would be the diet of choice for me, or just cut down on refined flour products and sweets etc. Should I quit drinking thr red wine at night?
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Answered by Dr. Anil Grover (16 minutes later)
Hi XXXXXXX,

To answer your this specific question, total amount of calories intake per day( including Protein, Fats and Carbohydrates) will depend on your weight for height. You have to get to ideal body weight which you can check from charts available. Therefore, intake of high protein shall depend on that and profession you do. Surely, cutting down of refined sugar products to bare minimum and limiting your red wine( ~17% alcohol) intake to one glass per day will help in reducing triglycerides. So will the brisk walking (3.5 miles or 5 KM/hour speed, a minimum of 40 minutes a day). If these do not help much, after trying for say one month, you shall have to consult your doctor for prescription medicine. Good Luck.

Dr Anil Grover
Cardiologist

Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Aparna Kohli
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Follow up: Dr. Anil Grover (12 hours later)
Since it is so hot this time of year, would riding a bike instead of walking do as good for the exercise program. I have a computerized recumbent bike in my house. It gets my pulse up just like a fast walk.
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Answered by Dr. Anil Grover (13 minutes later)
Hello there,

Yes of course. You are right you have to do an activity which increases your pulse rate 20% above the resting. If cycling can be done due to inclement weather it is as good exercise as brisk walking.

Thank you for your very pertinent question

Best Wishes

Dr Anil Grover
Cardiologist
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
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Dr. Anil Grover

Cardiologist

Practicing since :1981

Answered : 922 Questions

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Elevated triglycerides in the lipid blood test. Can I control it by change in diet and exercise?

Hi XXXXXXX,

Thank you for writing in.

Triglyceride as the only component of lipid profile being elevated is not uncommon occurrence. You have value which is one and half times normal. It is common and is proven by the fact that when associated with central obesity (obesity around waist) researchers have recommended a name for this combination "Hypertriglyceridemic Waist Syndrome". It is suggested that this should be recognized as independent risk factor for heart disease.

Yes, you will have to make changes in diet but more on refined carbohydrates which are main precursors of triglycerides. If the diet changes and more walk (brisk walk) does not take care of it, you may have to see the doctor and get a suitable drug prescribed.

In my experience Niacin preparation available on prescription works better. But your doctor may have other ideas depending on your medical history and drug intake. Nevertheless, the aim remains the same that to bring it below or around 150 mg%.

Hope this answers your query. If you have further queries I shall be pleased to answer.

Best wishes
Dr Anil Grover
Cardiologist