What the heck is LDL? What Does The Numbers Tell Us?

good-and-bad-cholesterolWhen I was 266lbs I didn’t know a thing about my health other than I needed to loose some weight.  Blood pressure and things like LDL and HDL didn’t mean a thing to me.  B12?  What the heck was that?  Ferritin sounding like some animal you would buy from a pet store.

Over the last year I have learned so much about health and what these markers mean above.

How Is LDL Cholesterol Interpreted?

Definition: Cholesterol is something we hear about regularly – as in, avoiding foods high in cholesterol or exercising in order to lower ‘bad’ cholesterol. But what exactly is it? Cholesterol is actually a waxy substance that is part of the fats in your bloodstream and the cells of your body. We need a certain amount of cholesterol to function, but too much can put you at risk for heart disease.

There are actually two types of cholesterol most of us have heard of: HDL (high-density lipoprotein) and LDL (lod-density lipoprotein).

LDL is considered the ‘bad’ cholesterol because too much of it can build up in the arteries, which can lead to heart problems. HDL is considered the ‘good’ cholesterol because, the more you have, the more you may be protected from heart disease.

It is considered important to keep cholesterol levels, especially LDL-C within certain limits. If you have other risk factors for heart disease, such as high blood pressure, diabetes, or if you smoke, keeping LDL-C low becomes even more important.

Here you can see how LDL-C levels are looked at in terms of risk with my results in between in Bold Black Text.

  • above 190 mg/dL (4.9 mmol/L) is considered very high
  • 160 – 189 mg/dL(4.1 – 4.9 mmol/L) is considered high
  • 130 – 159 mg/dL (3.4 – 4.1 mmol/L) is considered borderline high
  •                                     3.50 mmol/L – My Level 2010
  •                                     3.36 mmol/L – My Level 2013
  • 100 – 129 mg/dL (2.6 – 3.3 mmol/L) is considered near ideal
  •                                     2.11  mmol/L – My Level 2015 (TURNED VEGAN)
  • below 100 mg/dL (below 2.6 mmol/L) is considered ideal for people at risk of heart disease
  • below 100 mg/dL (below 2.6 mmol/L) is considered ideal for people at risk of heart disease
  • below 70 mg/dL (below 1.8 mmol/L) is considered ideal for people at very high risk of heart disease

How Can You Influence Your LDL Cholesterol?

If your LDL-C is high, your doctor will probably suggest lifestyle changes. Quitting smoking will be helpful and so may eating whole grain, oatmeal, olive oil, beans, fruit, and vegetables. Most doctors will recommend eating less fat from meat and dairy products.  So I decided that I would go VEGAN!!! Happy I did as you can see the drop in my LDL number.

Regular exercise is desirable. Losing weight is helpful. Eat MORE plants and you will see the drop as well 😉

The foods that I eliminated from my diet were Meat, Daily and Eggs and all processed food.  These groups have the highest level of Saturated Fats, Trans Fats and cancer promoting cell growth on the plant.

Fruits and Vegetables

I always eat lot of fruits and vegetables. Not only are these foods low in calories and fat, they will also not raise your cholesterol levels. Many fruits and veggies also contain heart-healthy chemicals, such as phytosterols and polyphenols, which can help keep your cholesterol levels in check and your fibre intake will increase and thats a very good thing.  The more fibre in my diet the happier I am 🙂

Here some foods that I eat that help lower my LDL

    • Almonds
    • 2 Tablespoons of ground flax seeds
    • 2 Tablespoons of ground chia seeds
    • Kiwi’s
    • Four Brazil nuts a month (that’s all)  Watch the video if you don’t believe me..LOL
    • Load up on foods high in soluble fiber. This means tons of beans and legumes
    • Vegetables loaded with nitrates have been shown to improve heart health. Beets and arugula have tons!
    • Dark green leafy vegetables such as kale, spinach, collard and greens
  • This is a great website that can help

 

 

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Categories: Cholesterol Levels, News

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