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Readers Respond: Raising HDL Levels

Responses: 183


Updated April 23, 2010

From the article: Raising Your HDL Levels
Raising your levels of HDL -- the "good" cholesterol -- can be a challenge, because it usually requires lifestyle changes rather than simply taking a pill. Still, most experts believe that higher HDL levels can go a long way toward protecting you from coronary artery disease.

This being the case, every bit of encouragement we can give each other will help. So share with other readers what you did to raise your HDL levels. Tell Us What Worked

Obstinately low HDL

I brought down my TRIGS from 600 to 147 and total CHOL from 240 to 136 and LDL from 130 to 69 and lost 50 lbs and waistline from 48ins to 44 but my HDL went up only from 30 to 38 . My fasting Glucose went from 115 to 102 and on the OGTT after 2 hrs from 200 to 126 . My diet is almost vegetarian with 12 eggs a week and some low fat cheese and one glass full milk a day and NO SUGAR or soft drinks or alcohol or canned or processed food or bread , rice or pasta . Blood Pressure between 140 to 110 Syst and 90 to 80 Diast , no medication , no supplements . I am 65 . I am thinking of starting to take more Sat Fats and have been on low dose Aspirin for 30 yrs . In keeping with latest info on atherosclerosis and plaque prevention I will go on a combination of Perindopril/Amlodipine for B.P . I will also do a stress echocardiogram and a coronary artery scan to check out risk . But my low HDL is a source of frustration . My wt loss target is another 10 to 29 lbs down to get a BMI of just below 25
—Guest wombat65

increase by 9 points

I increased my hdl to 49 from 40 and triglycerides to 109 from 250 in 3 1/2 months. My ldl is still very low. Total cholesterol went down a few points to 181 from 185. I did this mainly from following a beginner's 1/2 marathon training by walking instead of running. The plan is badically walking low, medium, low, medium, rest day, long, rest day schedule with an increasing amount walked each week. I also ate fewer carbs. I didn't lose weight but I went from being very sedentary to active.
—Guest ricitosdeplata


I've been a vegan for 2 years now. My total Chol. is 168, LDL = 106, HDL = 51 and Triglycerides = 53. I also get 45 min. of exercise 5 days/week. Whole food is my medicine and I will never take prescription drugs!
—Guest Islander

got hdl to go up

I do not workout...my hdl went from 36 to 135 in a year eating a high fat almost no carb diet. My triglycerides are 45
—Guest lynn

HDL 46 to 56

I lost over 100 pounds but my HDL stayed around 45 or 46. I then switched to a different weight loss plan - Weight Watchers - who encourages eating a lot of fruit. That is the only real change I made. My HDL went to 56. Is it the fruit?
—Guest Deb Solko

Salmon and a Labrador

My HDL levels increased from a healthy 68 to an impressive 86 in the past year. We adopted a yellow lab, and I walk one to three miles with him each day. My husband and I also started eating salmon two to three times a week. And our new nighttime snack is nonfat greek yogurt, sprinkled with raw cashews or almonds and a tablespoon of fat free jam.
—Guest Erin Go Bragh

How I raised my HDL Levels.

My HDL was just tested at 93. I take 1 tablespoon of coconut oil a day, put olive oil on my salads. I avoid trans fats and eat a lot of greens.
—Guest Pan

exercise and Heart Savior

55 year old post menopausal hdl of 35 jumped to 51 after 5 weeks of daily eliptical, treadmill, and a supplement called Heart Savior. My total cholesterol dropped from 270 to 250 in the same amount of time. 3000 mg. of fish oil also.
—Guest Audrey

i walk a lot and fast

and today my total is 263 triglicerids 57 ldl 160 and my hdl is 92! immagine how ill be when i cut down all the dry carbs and heat/dairy fats.

hdl extremely high

I raised my hdl vs ldl ratio to over 1, meaning my hdl was actually higher than my ldl. I did this through a combination of limiting simple sugars/ carbs in general, increasing monosaturated fat intake (minimum 1 avocado daily), taking high potency omega 3 (3g epa+dha daily) and doing 35-45 minutes of cardiovascular activity 4x a week. Dietary changes can be extremely effective at improving cholesterol.
—Guest ev

want to increase hdl cholestrol

i want to increse hdl cholestrol of my huband who has undergone bypass surgery before two years....his hdl is 31......he walks 3.5 kms five times a week his age is 54 yrs ...pl advice....thank you
—Guest chetna

hdl decreases and ldl raised. pls advice

im 43(M), 3 months ago my trgl//hdl/ldl/vldl/total were 109/46/127/21/194. i stopped aggs, milk, diary and meat. i ate oatmeal everyday, fish, vegetables, walnuts, pistachio, almonds and one cod lever oil pill once in 2 days, and CASHEW NUTS. now after 3 monhts the readings are 80/39/131/16/186. hdl decreasd and ldl increased !!!. can somebody help, i doubt cashew and cod lever oil.... i exercise thrice a week.
—Guest Vijay

Strength training

I have not lost weight, actually quite the opposite. I have been doing a strong/heavy weightlighting program 3 days a week, with minimal aerobic excercise (5 minutes walking to warm up for strength work). My HDL has never been above 50. Today I tested at 67. The highest it has ever been. I have also been eating a little more dietary fiber & more almonds too.
—Guest dntworribhappi

reduding LDL and increase HDL

Hi 5 cloves garlic daily in breakfast. One day fast weekly. Thats it, no excercise, no dieting, no drugs. My LDL reduced from 217 to 108 and HDL increased from 36 to 48.


Lift weights 3 times per week. Ride bike 30 min. 3 times per week and swim 2 times per week for 1 hour. Eat 40 grams fiber each day and eat peanut butter every day. take 4 grams of fish oil per day. hdl has gone from 42 to 56 in 1 year. ldl has gone from 130 to 78.
—Guest andrew

Tell Us What Worked

Raising HDL Levels

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