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Dr. Andrew Rynne

Family Physician

Exp 18 years

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Very high cholesterol

I am in my 20 s, slightly underweight. I eat a balanced diet (high in fish and veggies, low in red meats), but have very high cholesterol. I don t know if there is history of heart disease in my family and have no way to find out. Anyone have experience with this or know what could cause this? Everything has checked out okay at the doc, except the high chol. count. I have always been on this same diet, only with even less meat when I was younger. (mother was vegetarian). Thank you for all of your insight! : )
Thu, 17 Dec 2009
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  User's Response
....It sounds as though you're doing all the right things, so keep it up! you may have some hereditary factors causing your elevated cholesterol. Although you haven't seen results yet from eating right, it might encourage you to know that it takes time for the body to adjust to lifestyle changes (and different amounts of time for different people, too). As for how food figures into the equation, recent research shows that by far the major dietary factor affecting blood cholesterol levels is the type of fats eaten. ....Mono- and poly-unsaturated fats lower LDL ("bad") cholesterol levels and raise those of HDL ("good"), while saturated and trans fats raise LDL levels. ....Some foods containing monounsaturated fats are olive oil, nuts, and avocados; foods containing polyunsaturated fats include corn, safflower, and cottonseed oils and fish. So you need to eat more foods with Mono-and poly-unsaturated fats. Also, it's a good idea to watch the kinds of carbohydrates one eats, as carbohydrates can raise your cholesterol. Limit Highly processed carbohydrates such as — think corn-syrupy soda, glazed donuts, and black-and-white cookies. These have been associated with elevated triglyceride blood levels and lowered HDL levels, increasing the risk of heart disease. As carbohydrates go, one's heart will be happier with carbohydrates such as fruit, oats, brown rice and other whole grains:)
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