Bev - you won't need medication.
Misinformation abounds on this subject. There is a vast amount of money on the line here, either spent on drugs, saved by preventing heart disease and stroke or boosting share prices, depending on your point of view.
1. You don't need statins just to reduce your cholesterol. You might use them to cut your risk of vascular disease - but this is not the same thing. Many factors ~(blood pressure, smoking, diabetes, weight, family history etc) go into this risk, but cholesterol is one which we can influence, so has the spot light on it.
2. Controlling other risk factors is just as helpful as controlling your cholesterol - so getting fitter, eating properly, stopping smoking etc.
3. The latest guidelines from NICEhttp://www.nice.org.uk/guidance/index.jsp?action=byID&o=11982]NICE[/url] remind us that you should be offered a statin if your risk of vascular disease is over 20% in the next ten years. To evaluate this we need your BP, height/weight, family history etc as well as your cholesterol profile - unless your cholesterol is spectacularly high (8 or above despite low fat diet).
Bev - women are at lower risk than men. In my experience it's nigh on impossible for an otherwise healthy slim woman to have a 20% risk with a cholesterol around 6, unless it runs right through your family. I would be surprised if it even reaches double figures. You aren't going to need treatment.
You would always have a lower risk with a lower cholesterol, no matter your starting point, but personally I'm not about to live on celery just to get my cholesterol down from 5.3 to 5.1 (for example - no idea what my cholesterol is because I have never measured it).
Recently, medics have been placing more importance on reading the ratio between HDL and LDL (bad and good cholesterol) rather than the mere composit of all lipids in our blood.
with levels of 5.5 and good ratio showing the good cholesterol dominance over the bad one there is no need to take any statins.
women hormones before and around menopause tend to play a big factor in elevating the levels of cholesterol.
Stressalso plays a big role in BP fluctuation.
A sensible diet, exercise, and the use of plant sterol will certainly lower the level you have.
Thanks guys! All good advice and I feel less panicked! However I am still very curious as to why a NON fasting test on 16/6 result was 5.6 and a fasting test on 26/06 was 6.1 . Thats why i wondered about stress and/or the run before the second test......
Also, what are plant sterols??
Plant sterols or stenol are cholesterol-lowering products. They inhibit its absorption.
They can be found in Pro-Activ and Benecol as spreads and drinks.
Also oatmeal (porridge) is highly recommended for reducing the cholesterol level.
Your daily food intake should include both, ideally.
As for the discrepency in the results within a short gap between both of them, this is not an indicator that your cholesterol level jumped within one week. It takes much longer than a week for this increase to happen.
If this level is maintained but the ratio of the good cholesterol vs the bad one is doubled, I think you have nothing to panick about.
Keep a check every 6 months and if the levels get higher and you have a genetic predisposition, statins or similar should the other option.
I know this is over a month later but would like to add my bit from experience.
Statins are damaging over long term use, i took them for 10 years suffering a lot of leg pains and cramps but never guessing these may be the cause. Then one day i started getting a red rash over my arms and legs which was very painful it would not go away no matter what i put on it, The Gp then recommended i had a blood test to test for Muscle enzymes in my blood. I was advised i had very high levels and was suffering from (excuse the spelling) Dermatomyositis and must stop taking Statins immediately. I was advised this could of lead to kidney failure in the long term. I stopped and the problem went away so be warned.
I tried cutting out completly caffine and salt...we didn't use much salt to be honest and have never eaten much in the way of processed foods high in salt, the caffine was tough as it gave me a stonking head ache for a day....now i just use de-caff....(not as nice) but after 12 months the blood pressure was exactly the same. lost some wieght and this also made no difference.
I was in the same boat as you....I am 38 into running and cycle a bike to work, completed the silverstone half this year in 1:42 but after using a 24hr blood pressure monitor over night was put on the above medication,
for the past 5+ years my blood pressures been about 143/92 ish....
after being on the tablets for the past 1.5 months my blood pressure is now spot on, for the first 2 days i ached like i have never ached before,,,but fine after that....
yep I have read about long term effects but then again I am only 38 and want to see my 5 and 2 year old grow up rather than suffer a heart attack. (my father died aged 39) when I was only a boy....
its had no effect on my running, although i was told to lay off the tablets for a couple of days before a planned marathon (like most people on here we dream one day of a FLM place) just because of dehydration and taking medication isn't a good idea.
so all in all, its been a good thing....yep I shed more than a few tears about starting medication and when i did a Heart Foundation run earlier in the year had a chat to a 23 year old lady who was on tablets...and she was skinny, but like me the issue ran (no pun) in the family....
(ran 18 miles on saturday for the first time)
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