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what's the nitty gritty on cholesterol numbers? is there a paleo consensus on what is optimal?

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created June 28, 2011 at 7:11 PM

I just had bloodwork done after 2 months eating paleo. my PCP says my cholesterol is too high and that I need to change my diet and come back in a few months for another test. however, I know that as for most things, paleo-ers like to go against the conventional wisdom. is there a rule that has been adopted in the community on what to look for in cholesterol numbers? I'm feeling a little nervous and thinking I need to cut back on eggs, etc. help keep me strong because I am otherwise loving paleo!

for reference:

5'3", 115lbs, female.

total: 286 Triglycerides: 67 HDL: 109 VLDL (calc): 13 LDL (calc): 164

Edited to add:

While I am curious to have an evaluation of my specific numbers, I'm looking more for what is generally considered good in the paleo community (like number ranges) for the various measurements.

Af1d286f0fd5c3949f59b4edf4d892f5

(18452)

on June 28, 2011
at 08:03 PM

C Reative Protein. It should be part of the test you already did. don't be scared by the conventional comments from docs. they don't know what to look for.

7b439bc3c2033329fc3c64937825ac6c

(255)

on June 28, 2011
at 07:50 PM

ha, never thought I'd have my cholesterol described as bangin. ;) so what's this CRP, and how would I get it checked out?

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2 Answers

1
Af1d286f0fd5c3949f59b4edf4d892f5

(18452)

on June 28, 2011
at 07:21 PM

If all they were concerned about is your cholesterol being too high, then going ahead and quit the eggs and watch your HDL drop, which will lower your TC. That might make the silly Doc happy.

ok enough with the sarcasm.

Here's the real deal:

Those numbers are bangin! high HDL, low Trigs, low VLDL, middle of the road LDL. Middle of the road TC. If your CRP is low, you've got no reason to be concerned.

If you are looking to make changes based on these numbers only, then I wouldn't feel led to change pretty much anything if I were you.

7b439bc3c2033329fc3c64937825ac6c

(255)

on June 28, 2011
at 07:50 PM

ha, never thought I'd have my cholesterol described as bangin. ;) so what's this CRP, and how would I get it checked out?

Af1d286f0fd5c3949f59b4edf4d892f5

(18452)

on June 28, 2011
at 08:03 PM

C Reative Protein. It should be part of the test you already did. don't be scared by the conventional comments from docs. they don't know what to look for.

0
510bdda8988ed0d4b0ec0b738b4edb73

(20898)

on June 28, 2011
at 07:17 PM

I think that in general, cholesterol is a worthless measurement. The only reason that we care about it is that 1) it's an easy measurement to make - 1930's technology was able to accurately measure it, and 2) Keys wrote a whole paper on how cholesterol is correlated with heart disease.

Now there may be a slight correlation between some forms of VLDL (or something like that) and heart disease, but I still argue that serum cholesterol is a fairly worthless measurement and that we only care about it because of historical reasons.

The measurement that matters is how much of your coronary arteries are blocked or narrowed, that's the actual physical measure that matters. Everything else is just speculation and bad correlations.

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