Before doing so, I had my blood work done. I’ve had my blood work every year since.
Understanding blood work is wonky. So I copied the text from the Cleveland Clinic, one of the largest and most respected hospitals in the country. And, a leading hospital on heart disease. The Cleveland Clinic is where Doctor Caldwell Esselstyn trained and worked for years.
From this page, on the Cleveland Clinic’s website:
Your total blood cholesterol is a measure of the cholesterol components LDL (low-density lipoprotein) cholesterol, HDL (high-density lipoprotein) cholesterol, and VLDL (very low-density lipoprotein, which is the triglyceride-carrying component of lipids). Total cholesterol values cannot be interpreted in the absence of the cholesterol components listed below.
Total cholesterol (TC) goal values:
75-169 mg/dL for those age 20 and younger
100-199 mg/dL for those over age 21
Kinds of cholesterol
LDL (low density-lipoprotein) cholesterol is also called “bad” cholesterol. LDL can build up on the walls of your arteries and increase your chances of getting heart disease. If you do not have heart or blood vessel disease and are not at high risk for developing heart disease, the following guidelines apply.
Your LDL cholesterol number is:
Optimal if it is less than 100
Near optimal/above optimal if it is 100-129
Borderline high if it is 130-159
High if it is 160-189
Very high if it is 190 or above
The treatment goal for individuals with heart disease or blood vessel disease is to reach an LDL of less than 70. The treatment goal for high-risk individuals (those with diabetes or other multiple risk factors for heart disease) is to reach an LDL of less than 100.
HDL (high-density lipoprotein) cholesterol is also called “good” cholesterol. HDL protects against heart disease by taking the bad cholesterol out of your blood and keeping it from building up in your arteries. Your HDL cholesterol number is:
Low (and considered a risk factor) if it is less than 40
Good (and able to help lower your risk of heart disease) if it is 60 or more
Triglycerides are the chemical form in which most fat exists in food and the body. Triglycerides are mostly carried in VLDL and chylomicrons. VLDL comes from the liver and also has cholesterol. Chylomicrons come from dietary fat.
Along with cholesterol, triglycerides form plasma lipids. Excess triglycerides in plasma have been linked to the occurrence of coronary artery disease in some people. Like cholesterol, increases in triglyceride levels can be detected by plasma measurements. These measurements should be made after an overnight food and alcohol fast. Your triglyceride numbers are:
Normal if they are less than 150
Borderline high if they are 150-199
High if they are 200-499
Very high if they are 500 or higher
Who should get a cholesterol screening?
Everyone over the age of 20 should get their cholesterol levels measured at least once every five years. The test that is performed is a blood test called a lipoprotein profile. That includes:
Total cholesterol level
LDL level is calculated from the above 3 values.
Now onward to my numbers.
Cholesterol numbers before going plantarian, test from 4-16-15:
Total Cholesterol: 205
HDL Cholesterol: 68
LDL Cholesterol: 119
Cholesterol numbers 1 year after going plantarian, test from 4-24-16:
Total Cholesterol: 184
HDL Cholesterol: 63
LDL Cholesterol: 106
Cholesterol numbers 2 years after going plantarian, test from 4-22-17:
Total Cholesterol: 178
HDL Cholesterol: 74
LDL Cholesterol: 92
So in 2 years of being plantarian, not eating not real food, not eating anything with a face or a mother, my cholesterol numbers improved each year.
My total cholesterol (the lower the number the better) dropped 27 points from 205, which was in the High range, to 178.
My Triglycerides (the lower the number the better) numbers were already optimal, which means below 150. But they dropped 28 points from 89 to 61.
My HDL cholesterol was 68, just slightly above what’s considered to be good, meaning not at risk for heart disease. But with HDL, the higher the number the better. I was able to raise my HDL 6 points.
My LDL cholesterol was 119 when I started. Not bad, but not great either. Optimal LDL is below 100. I was able to lower my LDL by 27 points, get it into the optimal range.
So overall, I’m psyched. But I can do better. I’m not going to lie. I had a few pieces of cheese pizza. Way too much candy. And too many stops at McDonald’s on the way home, for a McFlurry. I’m stopping all that now.
But most important, I totally love living this way. The food tastes great. I’m losing my candy jones by eating watermelon or a piece of fruit. I’m drinking a lot of water each day now.
And I did all this with food, not medication. I used food, not pills, to make myself healthier. I don’t worry about protein, calories, or whether or not I’m getting enough of this or that. I know what to eat each day, I just eat.
We love it!
Let me know what I can do to help you.