Can I Control My Cholesterol by Diet Alone?

Wednesday, 25 Sep 2013 03:57 PM

By Peter Hibberd, M.D.

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Question: My cholesterol is 346 even after dieting and taking Ezetrol. I am 63 years old and I eat a healthy diet. What else can I do?

Dr. Hibberd's answer:
 
First of all. Your diet only contributes to about 10-20 percent of your cholesterol reading, so a sensible high-fiber diet is a good idea, but there is no need to over-react as some do.
 
Ezetrol is a cholesterol absorption inhibitor. I am not a great fan of using this drug alone because the studies on reduction of cardiovascular risk are not nearly as persuasive as the research showing drugs that reduce the production of cholesterol by your liver are effective and probably help more with reducing cardiovascular risk.
 
Examples of cholesterol production inhibitor drugs are Crestor, Pravachol, and Lipitor, to name a few, and they are not the same. There are also medications and supplements that increase your protective HDL ("good" cholesterol) and that can reduce your cardiovascular risk. Consider fish oil supplements, under the direction of your physician.

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