T Nation

Cholesterol ???


Just had my second blood test done and it was confirmed that my cholesterol LDL is way to high and my HDL is way to low. So the doctor is putting me on a 2000 cal a day diet, and she wants me to do aerobics.

Now 2000 cal a day will shrink me down to what i weighed in 6th grade cannot do this, and aerobics on these old knees will kill me before the heart attack. Wife up my ass like know ones business. What an old man to do have 4 pints of guiness and a cheeseburger and set my priorites strait.

Anyone else have this problem? What did you do for the cholesterol?

Hope this thread doesn't get hijacked like the last.......


First off, cholesterol doesn't actually mean a whole hell of alot. There are more studies showing that LOW cholesterol is a health risk than high cholesterol. The 'high cholesterol = unhealthy' thing is bad science. Bear in mind that cholesterol is necessary for optimal health, particularly hormonal function. Thats said cholesterol levels should be kept to a sebsible level.

A more useful measure is triglyceride levels. If these are high, you need to address that but it is relatively simple: cut the carbs (eat <50g per day) and supplement with a high quality fish oil. Of course, the age old advice to eat more fruit and veg always applies.

Good luck.


Yup. Been there, done that.

I agreee with the first reply - high LDL is not necessarily bad, there are indeed suggestions that it can help prolong life, too. It's frustrating trying to sort out the wheat from the chaff isn't it?

Aerobics will reduce cholesterol (and lean mass) very well, based upon my experience: my chol. went from 307 to about 139 or so when I ran 5x5 miles / week for only 2 months. I also became weak and thin. My chol. went back up to 180+ after I cut the "cardio" down and replaced it with HIIT and strength-training. So it's better than it was, but it's not where my Doc would like it to be.

On to some ideas: you could try reducing carbs, especially high GI stuff like pasta, bread, fries and cereal (this will reduce triglycerides dramatically, if that's an issue too).

As for cholesterol...not so easy. Mine is down to the acceptable levels but is hardly good, and I eat all the right stuff (including everything that's supposed to lower LDL and increase HDL). Perhaps you could do SOME cardio work - e.g. elliptical, rowing, cycling, low-weight hi-rep weights (such as Chad Waterbury's GPP ASAP) - anything to get the HR up for a sustained period of time that's using the aerobic energy system as opposed to the anaerobic one. Maybe 3 x 20-30 minute sessions after strength-training / HIIT might be worth trying for a few weeks?

Good luck anyhow.