Personal Experience with Cholesterol and Statins on Keto: A Candid Discussion
This video is gonna be a little bit different. I wanted to talk a little bit about my personal experience with cholesterol and statin medication, and I’m gonna start right after this. This channel is focused on discussing the ketogenic diet, including engaging in keto food vlogs, highlighting keto science, and creating keto recipe content.
So, basically, this channel is all about the ketogenic diet! They cover it from every angle – talking about the science behind it, showcasing delicious keto-friendly foods in vlogs, and even creating their own keto recipes from scratch. If you’re interested in keto and want to learn more, this channel should definitely be on your radar. They’ve got a ton of useful information and just watching their videos will get your mouth watering with all the tasty dishes they whip up! All right, guys. So this is a video that’s been a long time coming. I have wanted to do this video for a while.
Managing High Cholesterol on a Keto Diet: Personal Experience with Statin Medications
It’s about cholesterol, and my personal experience with cholesterol. Before I even get started, I want to make sure you guys understand that I am NOT a doctor. I’m not a medical professional of any kind. I’m not trying to give anyone any medical advice. This is simply my experience with the world of high cholesterol and statin medications. So I’m gonna take you guys back a little while, to about 2010 or so. I went for routine blood work. I at this point, I was at about age 35, 36. And my cholesterol came back as pretty high. It was around 300 total, and my doctor put me on atorvastatin medication, 20 milligrams.
Atorvastatin is more commonly known as Lipitor. It’s a very common cholesterol-lowering medication. And so I listened to my doctor, and I went on this medication. And I was on it for a while. My cholesterol numbers went down, and my doctor was very happy. But I felt like garbage. My joints hurt, and I had sort of a brain fog, and I didn’t even put two and two together.
The Impact of Statins on Exercise Performance in Individuals on a Keto Diet
I didn’t even think for a second that it was the atorvastatin that was giving me these side effects.I just chalked it up to me getting older, and getting creakier, maybe getting a little bit more forgetful, but in doing a little bit of research, I found that these are very common side effects to statin medications in general. So I stayed on the medications, just because my doctor told me to, and I was scared to go off them, because I was afraid that if I my cholesterol got too high, I would have a heart attack and die. So I began to exercise regularly, even while on the statin medications.
I began to run 5k races, and I actually built up my endurance to the point where I could run a marathon. Which I did and finished the 2012 Mohawk Hudson marathon, and in training for that marathon, I felt terrible. I would run and go out for a long training run on the weekends, come back, and need a day to recover. My body just hurt so much, and it bummed me out, because I really enjoyed running.
From Yo-Yoing to Keto: How One Woman Improved Her Health and Ditched Her Statin Medication
So I yo-yoed with my weight for a little while. After this marathon, I sort of started eating poorly.I had a lot of, you know, frozen pizzas, and just made bad choices. But my cholesterol kind of stayed in that normal range, because I was still on the atorvastatin, and then in early 2017, I sort of had enough yo-yoing and I decided to start keto. I found keto through a friend at work, and tried it for a little while, and within a week, was in love with it, because I felt amazing.
Better than I had in a long time, actually. I didn’t really have much of the keto flu, maybe a few days, and then I think the fourth day after I started keto, I can remember waking up and feeling like something was different. Wasn’t hungry. Had a lot of energy. Was becoming fat adapted. So I decided to stay with it. I also decided to drop my statin medication. And I stopped taking my statins in January, and got some baseline blood work done at the time.
NMR Lipid Profile Shows Positive Results in Keto Dieter’s Cholesterol Levels Despite Doctor’s Concerns
And then a few months later, when I went to see my doctor again, had my blood work done again, and my numbers were up, which is what I expected. I expected my cholesterol to go up. And he was worried, and really didn’t know what to do. I told him that I felt better than I had in years. He wanted me to go back on the statin meds. I did not. Did not agree. Did not go back on them.
He said, “let’s give it a few more months, and see how you’re doing then.” A few more months went by, and I lost a grand total, from the… from January until about July, I’d lost fifty-something pounds, which he was thrilled about. And at this time, when I got my lipids done, I got what’s called an NMR lipid profile. NMR stands for a Nuclear Magnetic Resonance.
And what that does is as opposed to a normal lipid panel, it measures not only your total cholesterol, but it actually breaks down your HDL, your LDL, the number of particles, the size of the particles, the consistency of the particles.
NMR Lipid Testing Reveals Favorable Results on Keto Diet Despite High LDL Levels
It’s much more information, that gives you a lot clearer picture of what’s going on with your lipids. And every single marker on my NMR, outside of my LDL, was sparkling. Best numbers I’d ever had. My triglycerides were super-low, my HDL was up, all the ratios of HDL-to-total cholesterol looked good. HDL-to- triglycerides looked fantastic. The one number that was still super-high, even higher, was my LDL. It was up near 300.
My GP didn’t really know what to make of that, so he sent me to a cardiologist. And the cardiologist ran some tests on me. He did an echo… not an echocardiogram… They basically listened to my heart, to test for abnormalities. Everything was cool there. They put me on a treadmill, a stress test, and had me run.I remember I had fasted all that day, and told them I was fasted, and they didn’t think I would last long, and I ended up going for like 25 minutes. And every five minutes they would increase the pace and incline of the thing.
Keto Diet Helps Improve Calcium Scoring Test Results, Avoiding the Need for Statin Medication
So I ran like an idiot on that thing for a while, did well on that, and then I went for the thing that was very excited to go for. The third test that I went before at the cardiologist’s office was called a calcium scoring test. The calcium scoring test was the primary examination I desired as it provides a more accurate indication of heart disease than markers such as cholesterol.
This test measures the amount of calcium in the arteries and heart, providing a score from zero (indicating no risk) to a thousand (indicating severe risk). Despite hoping for a score of zero, my result of 14 is still commendable. And I was very excited, but my cardiologist wanted to put me back on a statin. And I refused. So I stayed on keto, and stayed off the statin meds, and dropped another 10 pounds.
GP Refers Patient to Low-Carb Doctor for Keto and Mediterranean Diet Transition
So by the time November of 2017 rolled around, I had lost a grand total of 65 pounds, and I went back in, and had some more blood work done. I had an NMR profile done. Similar numbers came back: sparkling across the board. Really, really fantastic numbers, except for that pesky LDL. And my GP sent me to… referred me to a low-carb doctor. Something that I didn’t even knew existed here in Albany, in the Albany area.
But I went to see this guy today. He knew what keto was, he knew what low-carb was, and he knew what it meant to be fat adapted. I answered a lot of the questions he had with answers that I don’t think he expected to hear. Because I had kind of…I’ve been doing this for 11 months. I kind of have learned a lot of things, and read up on some things, and knew what I was doing. We had a good conversation about keto and low carb. However, his whole thing is using keto to transition people to a Mediterranean Diet.
Expert challenges misconceptions about keto diet for long-term maintenance and addresses concerns on LDL levels
He’s had a lot of success getting people on Mediterranean diets, which is more… Less fat, and more protein. And you know, he gave me the line that I was dreading, that I knew I would probably hear, is that, “You know keto is great for when you’re just starting out, but as far as maintaining, it’s not really something that can get maintained long term.”
And I know this to be false. So we talked a little bit about my LDL, and how, you know even though my my calcium score was good, it wasn’t zero. Even though all of my numbers look good, except that LDL, and even though my weight is where it was when I was 21 years old, he suggested that I get. I eat fewer marble-y cuts of meat, he suggested that I lower my saturated fat. When I told him that I had butter in my coffee, he looked at me as if I had two heads. I’m doing a lot of reading about the lipid system.
Engineer’s Research on Lipid System and Keto Diet Challenges Traditional Cholesterol Beliefs
I’ve been watching a lot of videos about lipids and cholesterol, and I’ll link this right up here, but there’s a video by a guy named Dave Feldman who’s not a doctor, not a medical professional. He’s an engineer. and he has come at his cholesterol, which is similar to mine — he’s what you call a hyper responder to the keto diet. His LDL shot up when he started keto. And he’s an engineer, and he came at the problem from an engineer’s perspective, and basically gave himself… had blood work drawn every day for I think a month, or two months, and tracked what he ate over that course of time, and found some startling and amazing results, and basically concluded that the lipid system is SO dynamic and changeable, that to base anything on such a changeable system is Crazy Town.
So I’ll link it up here again. You should check out Dave Feldman. There’s a couple presentations that just kind of blew my mind on YouTube. And so that’s where I am these days. I am continuing keto. I’m in maintenance.
Personal and Institutional Reasons for Avoiding Statins on a Keto Diet
I’m not going back on statins, despite the pressure from every medical professional in my life to go back on them, I’m not going on them. Both for personal reasons, the reasons that I’ve said before — that they…I had some issues with them, some side effects, some achiness, some foggyheadedness, that I don’t want to experience again, but also, an institutional reason for not going back on them.
Statins are now the number one drug in the history of drugs. The standards for putting someone on statins have become lower and lower and lower as time has gone by, and I feel like it’s mostly about money. So while statins might be lowering my LDL number, I don’t feel like that LDL number being lower benefits me in any significant way. So that’s what my… been my experience with cholesterol and statins.I appreciate if you’ve listened to me ramble for this last 15 minutes or so. I know that this is not really the kind of video that I normally do, but I really wanted to talk about it. I’ve had some…
Understanding Cholesterol and the Keto Diet: A Personal Experience and Discussion
I feel pretty strongly about it. And that’s where I am, so… so let me know if any of you guys have had similar experiences. I know that in general, cholesterol does go up when you start keto, kind of no matter what, just based on the fact that you’re using fat for energy. Fat is being mobilized throughout your body more. Cholesterol is going to show it up in your blood, regardless. But let me know. Let me know what your experience has been with this stuff. I’d love to hear from you, love to chat about it. It’s something that I really needed to talk about, and I hope it benefits somebody, or hope somebody can identify with it.
And that’s gonna wrap it up for this week, so… so I thank you for watching, please consider subscribing if you haven’t already.
I hope you have a fantastic day, and I will see you next time..
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