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Failed cholesterol and triglycerides numbers (Read 1083 times)


Joggaholic

    I started running consistently last year since after my annual checkup, which showed that my cholesterol numbers weren't all that great:

     

    2011

    Total: 197 <<<

    HDL: 56

    LDL: 111

    Triglycerides: 153

     

    So now, a year later, I just got my latest report back, and I am disappointed...

     

    2012

    Total: 193 <<< almost the same

    HDL: 70

    LDL: 72

    Triglycerides: 254 <<< so much worse

     

    My doc wasn't all that concerned since I'm otherwise healthy and I'm not really in any danger zone, and so he gave me the generic "less fat, less sugar" diet solution (same as what I found from googling around). I had hoped to be healthier and fitter rather than just being not-in-immediate-need-of-medication. Looking at the numbers I don't think I have made much progress at all, and I feel kind of deflated. I've lost a few pounds even though I'm already underweight, and before the checkup in 2011 I was quiet sedentary, so logics seem to suggest that all these running I did hadn't really helped too much at all, or that somehow my diet got all screwed up this year. (The only noticeable difference in my eating habit is that I'm eating more now to fuel my runs, and drinking a lot more Gatorade and the like after running...)

     

    I know I can't expect some medical diagnosis over a message board, I'm just kind of bummed and felt like ranting...


    Queen of 3rd Place

      Bummer, Wing. Sounds to me like a genetic thing.

      Ex runner


      A Dance with Monkeys

        You are looking at the wrong numbers.


        Let's try this again:

         

        2011

        Total: 197

        HDL: 56 <<< Not bad. This is the GOOD cholesterol.

        LDL: 111 <<< A hair high. This is the BAD cholesterol.

        Triglycerides: 153

         

        So now, a year later, I just got my latest report back, and I am disappointed...

         

        2012

        Total: 193

        HDL: 70 <<< MUCH MUCH better, and this is a highly dreamy number.

        LDL: 72 <<< MUCH MUCH better, and this is a highly dreamy number.

        Triglycerides: 254 

         

         

        Your good cholesterol is essentially the same as your bad cholesterol. That is AWESOME. Your total cholesterol in both cases is under 200, which is great. The reason it did not change is because it is a number that combines HDL, LDL and some of your triglycerides. Since your LDL went down BUT your HDL went up, you would not expect much change in your total. And the variation in triglycerides is pretty much hour-to-hour, so I would not worry about it.


        A Dance with Monkeys

          Bummer, Wing. Sounds to me like a genetic thing.

           

          Not a bummer. It is good news Smile


          Joggaholic

            Not a bummer. It is good news Smile

             

            Thank you Trent! I have no idea how to interpret the HDL and LDL values. I know that the "cutoff" for HDL is > 40 and LDL < 130. I have no idea what it means to have say HDL = 70 vs HDL = 100, or LDL = 20 vs LDL = 70... etc. I take that "highly dreamy number" is good Smile and I placed the wrong focus on the high trig number? How bad is 254 anyway? (I boldfaced the trig number because it was boldfaced in my blood report, which jumped out like a red flag at me) Thanks again so much for the explanation!


            A Dance with Monkeys

              254 is higher than 153. But if you were to check next week, the trigs could just as easily be 102. They fluctuate fairly wildly and inflammation can cause them to rise, including from recent running. I would do nothing about the trigs right now, and then recheck next year.

                I wish my HDL were that high....

                 

                They say I could exercise more to increase them (uh huh....right) or drink more alcohol.  Maybe I'll try the second method after monkey.....

                Live the Adventure. Enjoy the Journey. Be Kind. Have Faith!

                xor


                  We could try during if you wanna.

                   

                    We could try during if you wanna.

                     

                    Only if you promise to carry me to the finish.

                    Live the Adventure. Enjoy the Journey. Be Kind. Have Faith!

                    xor


                      I'm down for that.

                       


                      Feeling the growl again

                         

                         

                        2012

                        Total: 193

                        HDL: 70 <<< MUCH MUCH better, and this is a highly dreamy number.

                        LDL: 72 <<< MUCH MUCH better, and this is a highly dreamy number.

                        Triglycerides: 254 

                         

                         

                        Hard to improve on that framing.

                         

                        What matters is the trend.  Two data points a trend do not make.  Monitor it over time.

                         

                        IMHO total cholesterol is WAY over-rated as a measure of health.  As you just learned you have to look at the components.  I have not eyeballed the data in a number of years now but I believe the correlation of high HDL (which you have) with lower risk of heart attack is as strong as the correlation of high LDL (which you do not have) with higher risk of heart attack.

                        "If you want to be a bad a$s, then do what a bad a$s does.  There's your pep talk for today.  Go Run." -- Slo_Hand

                         

                          I'm more interested in why Trent thinks that the numbers are awesome, but Wing's Dr. sounds like he was pretty much "bleah" about it.

                           

                          Wing...new doctor?

                          Jeff


                          Feeling the growl again

                            I'm more interested in why Trent thinks that the numbers are awesome, but Wing's Dr. sounds like he was pretty much "bleah" about it.

                             

                            Wing...new doctor?

                             

                            FWIW I was once called back into a medical office at a major university with a well-renowned medical school because they seemed concerned by my high HDL (in the 80s) and wanted to question me on why it could be that high.  Not once was it mentioned that it could be a good thing.

                            "If you want to be a bad a$s, then do what a bad a$s does.  There's your pep talk for today.  Go Run." -- Slo_Hand

                             


                            A Dance with Monkeys

                              I'm more interested in why Trent thinks that the numbers are awesome, but Wing's Dr. sounds like he was pretty much "bleah" about it.

                               

                              Wing...new doctor?

                               

                              Simple. The LDL is below the most aggressive recommendation and the HDL is above the most aggressive recommendation. Dude. Awesome. Dreamy.


                              Joggaholic

                                Simple. The LDL is below the most aggressive recommendation and the HDL is above the most aggressive recommendation. Dude. Awesome. Dreamy.

                                 

                                The lab report and doc's note I got back ONLY highlighted the issue with the triglyceride level, so I looked at the whole thing in a negative light. Nothing positive was said about the HDL/LDL numbers. With the way you had just explained it, I am reminded of a manager I once worked for. He once told me this during my annual performance review:

                                 

                                "Wing, if I never ever talk to you, it means you are doing a great job!"

                                 

                                That was pretty much the entirety of our conversation...

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