View Full Version : Cholesterol

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May 9th, 2004, 02:10 PM
anyone had their levels tested? i know the levels can vary with different physical and dietry circumstances, but may be useful to note when test was, were you vegan at the time? have you been re-tested since and did level change? etc..

from my test sheet the levels were:

below 5.20 - desireable
5.20 - 6.50 - borderline high
6.50 and above - high

my level was 4.16 when tested last summer before i was vegan but had been veggie for 15yrs. i was pleased with that - i may get another test at the end of this year just to see. does anyone know how quickly levels may show a change,ie what time period should be left before re-testing?


May 9th, 2004, 02:56 PM
I donīt understand your numbers - cholesterol is usually described in 3 digit numbers - there are two components : low density = ldl and high density=hdl, and then total cholesterol.

I`ve forgotten all my numbers, but before I was vegan, my total cholesterol was 238 - I am young, healthy and normal weight - donīt drink or smoke - this is very high - 240 is considered high risk-

So, I went vegan and 7 months later, my total cholesterol is 170. Nothing else in my life changed besides becoming vegan.

Regular exercise also plays a big role - but I have done the same level of exercise as when I was omni.

I would like to have a cholesterol result of 150 - but to do that I will have to lose weight and exercise alot - its a goal for the summer.

Here is a site with the basic info - although I wouldnīt use this source as my only resource about it:



May 9th, 2004, 07:14 PM
One year ago my total cholersterol was 166. It was after 4 years of vegetarianism and 2,5 years of veganism.

May 9th, 2004, 07:21 PM
Apparently the US reports lipid levels differently from the rest of the world :D 4.16 in the UK is the equivalent of about 160 in the US I think. There are conversion tables here - watch out, the conversions for triglycerides are different as mentioned at the bottom of the page


I am a long-term vegan but still managed to have borderline high cholesterol as I described in the thread about hydrogenated oils http://veganforum.com/forums/showthread.php?t=189

In answer to the question about how fast changes took effect, my doctor said that cholesterol levels could respond to "lifestyle" changes within just three or four weeks.

May 9th, 2004, 08:28 PM
thats a useful conversion chart harpy, thanks.
my level is quite good i think then?

May 9th, 2004, 09:51 PM
Apparently the US reports lipid levels differently from the rest of the world :D 4.16 in the UK is the equivalent of about 160 in the US I think.

That is interesting - here in Vienna they do it the same as in the US....

May 10th, 2004, 02:30 AM
165 here, after 3 years of vegetarianism (no dairy).

May 10th, 2004, 03:09 PM
i jus saw in the store the other day you can test your cholestrol at home...i dont know even know if those tests are accurate at all... i have no clue what my cholestrol is...

May 10th, 2004, 06:07 PM
here in Vienna they do it the same as in the US....

Hmm, maybe it's we in the UK who are doing our own thing then - however we have cunningly called our scale the "International" one :)

Yes, 160-170 is pretty good I think - to be much better than that you probably have to be a Masai Mara tribesperson or something.

The breakdown of HDL and LDL is also considered important and that is something you don't get from the home-testing kits, at least not from the more affordable ones - they just give you a single figure.

May 11th, 2004, 12:35 AM
when i got my cholesterol tested at age 16, i had been a lacto-ovo vegetarian my entire life. it was in the 140s. i haven't gotten it tested since i've gone vegan, but i think it would be interesting.

Aug 11th, 2004, 08:41 AM
just saw on tv news that pharmacists are launching a 'road show', going round pubs and clubs with mobile cholesterol and blood pressure testing equip for folk who go there and maynot have considered it before, to check their health out.
the prog suggested that they may be promoting the 'live like a slob then pop a pill to solve it' lifestyle but the pharmacists insisted that they were in it for the health but would be suggesting to folk to buy the tabs if they thought it would help

er....wouldnt it be cheaper and healthier for dieticians to accompany these pharmacists to advise on diet change and the positive changes this can make instead of 'the drug is the saviour of all' taken by drugs companies as per usual?
...oh no i forgot, there would be no money in that would there :(

Aug 11th, 2004, 02:23 PM
HA! So true, so true.

My partner and I used to do chair massage and Holistic Health Consultaions in the "club/party" scene. We actually got through to a few people, but more often then not we were just doing "damage control", making it easier for the person to wake up without a hangover in the morning by encouraging them to drink more water, take an "Emergen-c" supplement when drinking and giving them a chair massage. We had some pretty interesting conversations though...

Oct 28th, 2004, 02:15 AM
A few months ago my partner and I both had our cholesterol tested. My partner is not a vegan, I don't know what you'd call him, he doesn't eat dairy, eggs, mammals or birds, but he eats fish and sea creatures.
We both had the same cholesterol level : 3.5
His 'good' cholesterol, the cholesterol which removes 'bad' cholesterol from the arteries, was 30% higher than in men who eat dariy, eggs, mammals and birds. This is a good thing, because the good cholesterol keeps the bad cholesterol level low.
I was suprised at my result because I have a bad habit of being a chocolate junkie.

Oct 28th, 2004, 04:00 AM
High cholesterol runs in the family. I mystified my doctor when I told her I was a vegan...I actually haven't eaten ANY red meat since 1995. No cheese or eggs since June 2003. Yet my cholesterol doesn't budge.

Oct 28th, 2004, 04:02 AM
My partner is not a vegan, I don't know what you'd call him, he doesn't eat dairy, eggs, mammals or birds, but he eats fish and sea creatures.

I call those people who eat fish and sea creatures, but otherwise vegetarian - "vegequarians" coz the fact that they eat fish does NOT classify them as vegetarians or vegans. I hate it when people say 'I am vegetarian but I eat fish"

I was suprised at my result because I have a bad habit of being a chocolate junkie.

I had a high cholestrol level when I got checked at the beginning of the year - 6.5. I eat healthily, but my family has a cholestrol problem despite dietary choices.

Oct 28th, 2004, 07:25 AM
Years ago I had mine tested. It was 134. The woman was very impressed and she told me to keep with the same diet. I wonder what mine is now.

Oct 28th, 2004, 08:14 AM
assilembob, I also have an inherited tendency to high cholesterol, and even though I've not consumed any food containing cholesterol for almost 40 yrs, mine was high, and the doc put me onto a statin. It then dropped down to 4.25, and each year it doesn't vary much. I asked the doc if it would be ok now to drop the statin (Lipitor), but she assured me it would zoom up again.

Oct 28th, 2004, 10:26 AM
I had my Cl tested a few years ago @ 30 and it came in at 3.4 the doc said that was good -apparentlyanything under 5 is good.

Oct 28th, 2004, 12:32 PM
Apparently, regular exercise and a low-fat vegan diet is best to keep cholesterol levels in check, except for the 5 percent of people who have high cholesterol from hereditary.

celtic rose
Oct 28th, 2004, 02:47 PM
I'm one of the unlucky ones with a hereditary tendency towards high cholesterol.
I last had it tested around 10 years ago when I was veggie and it measured 5.7. So I went on a low fat diet for 3 months and was re-tested. It went UP to 5.9.
I haven't bothered since.

Oct 28th, 2004, 03:11 PM
Unlucky, Celtic Rose!!
I know 2 ladies who are a size 8 (UK!), eat moderately (though not sensibly as they are both meat eaters!), and have really sky-high Cholesterol levels.
I had a test a couple of years ago - I had become unhealthy, was a smoker (not anymore), a drinker, and a cake-eater! My level was 3, which seemed to kind of annoy my doctor!! :rolleyes:
Erm - obviously I do not endorse unhealthy habits!! :D

Oct 28th, 2004, 05:54 PM
I had never checked my Cholesterol level. Is there any symptoms if it is going up? Do we see any change in our body/breathing etc.? I do not see any kind of problem in my body/breathing etc. I meant, is it silent/hidden problem some times?


Oct 29th, 2004, 12:11 AM
Having high cholesterol doesn't necessarily produce any symptoms so it's probably worth getting a test sometime, esp if you have any history of cardiovascular problems in your family.

As I think I have already posted mine was borderline high at the beginning of the year (despite my having been a vegan for more than ten years :mad: ) but after a few months of healthy eating and more exercise it's now OK. Even when it was borderline high the doc wasn't that worried because I don't have any other risk factors (e.g. high blood pressure).

The link between high cholesterol and heart disease is rather controversial - some people think the may both have a common cause rather than one causing the other. And some people think other measurements, such as homocysteine levels, are better indicators of cardiovascular health.

Oct 29th, 2004, 12:40 AM
Yes. The fact that I have no other risk factors other than EVERY health problem in the book somewhere in my family (and some wacky health thingys with me) is what saves me from high cholesterol drugs. My blood pressure is actually chronically low...


Oct 29th, 2004, 01:53 AM
Thanks Harpy.

Fortunately, no CV history in my family and no blood pressure problem with me.

Even, I think, that one who is more pro to mental stress work or suffering mental tensions all the time, is also on high risk of CV problems like heart attacks etc.

Sometimes, I feels that, most peoples are born with hidden diseases in their genes itself. Inspite of regular life and healthy food style they do suffer.