I’ve been in an exercise black hole since January 29th – the day I hurt my elbow shoveling. Since I had tennis elbow surgery 10 years ago, I knew this time to immediately stop playing tennis and quit spin to let my elbow heal. Suddenly it was 4 months later and I’ve gained weight and am out of the regular exercise habit.
YES, I could have done some other exercise. YES, I have both a treadmill and an elliptical in my home. NO, I didn’t use them and instead wallowed in my sadness that I’d reinjured my elbow.
So I finally bucked up and got my cholesterol tested in November and the results were surprising. First of all, my cholesterol – after a year of reasonably careful eating and a lot more exercise, but no Metamucil or Fish Oil pills – actually moved in the right direction.
Details in a second.
Not only that, my new cardiologist (again, more in a sec on why I needed to finally see a cardiologist) actually called my cholesterol results “enviable.”
This shocked me. Especially because I gave up on the fish oil pills which apparently now,
It’s been rather a long while since I wrote about the importance of finding reputable online resources for learning about cholesterol. You can permanently locate links to educational resources on my Resources/Info Links page, but I thought it might be helpful to discuss in a post.
Well, quite frankly it’s because when discussing high cholesterol and heart disease risk, many doctors – who speak daily, probably, about cholesterol – rush through the conversation and use unfamiliar terms. On the receiving end it can feel like a tornado rather than a give and take discussion of personal cholesterol results and the resulting medical goals.
A standard cholesterol lipid panel provides four measures: Total Cholesterol, LDL Cholesterol, HDL Cholesterol and Triglycerides. But did you know that there are two other blood tests — and one ratio that’s easy to calculate — that can better predict your risk of heart disease? Which means that even with high cholesterol, you might not need a statin medication if these tests show low cardiac disease risk.
Or you might think you don’t need a statin … and in fact do.
And yet, your doctor probably has not told you about these tests. So let me.
In all the ‘bazillion ways to lower cholesterol’ lists I’ve read, not once did I see grapefruit listed. Well, it may have been listed (I don’t like grapefruit so it’s entirely possible likely I, um, skipped by it) but grapefruit is certainly not prominent on any list of foods that can help lower cholesterol.
And yet, apparently, it should be.
At least according to a 2006 (small) Israeli study posted online in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry. While the study is a few years old and included just 57 people, these were a pretty motivated group IMHO: they’d been unsuccessful lowering cholesterol with Rx statins,