I have high cholesterol. Very very high cholesterol. Who cares, right? I’m young, so why should I worry about that? I said that to myself for many years. My cholesterol kept creeping higher and higher… when I had it checked in September 2010, it was 289. And that’s just my bad cholesterol, not my combined cholesterol. My sister asked me if I was eating a bucket of lard every day. No, but I may as well have been. So, all those years I wasn’t worried at all because I was “young”. Then my brother dies suddenly of a heart attack at 50 years old. My other brother had a stroke at 50 years old. I don’t know about everyone else, but could the years possibly creep by any quicker?! Before you know it, I will be 50 years old. Not for a while, but still… I’m headed that way. I have a new doctor and this guy is really terrific. He’s the only doctor I’ve ever seen that actually spent alot of time with me going over my chart actually reading what I wrote and digging into my family health history. Me, ever the joker… when I was filling out the forms I came across a question that said “are you satisfied with your sex life?” and I wrote NO!!! You know, because I don’t have a husband in my life there is no sex life. I thought it was funny, and I also didn’t think he was going to actually read it… so now, here he is pouring over every word and I’m beginning to squirm wondering if he’s going to ask me about my sex life. He did not… whew!! But what he did notice was the death and illnesses in my family. He had a blood panel done and I came back for the results and he started me on cholesterol meds right away. He said he wanted to hit hard with these meds and started me on a higher dose and had me take Crestor of which there is no generic but he said this one and Lipitor work the best. Now I’m taking Crestor and it has brought my bad cholesterol down to 150. It needs to be lower, but I’m at least in the higher end of a normal range. Crestor makes my muscles achey. I even try to leave my big heavy purse I love at home and take a wallet because holding my purse on my arm makes my arm ache. On top of the Crestor, I started running. Since early December I’ve been running 5 days a week. Only 3 miles, not that far, but excercize makes your good cholesterol higher which is better. I started to actually look at what foods have cholesterol in it, and how I can control this better through diet. Basically cholesterol is in any food that comes from an animal. Some foods are worse then others. I have learned that there are some foods that I just can’t eat anymore. It’s not like a diet where you lose weight and then sneak french fries once in a while. There are specific foods that I just can’t eat ever again. That’s just reality. If I sneak and have them once in a while, before you know it they will be back in my diet because they happen to be the foods that I have always loved the most. So, out of everything I used to eat, this is what I can’t eat anymore.
Bacon, sausage, pepperoni, cheese, milk, eggs, yogurt, sour cream, mayonaisse… need I go on here?
This is what was in my diet that I LOVED and can no longer eat. Is it difficult? Yes. I have been praying that God will eliminate my craving for these foods. That when I see, smell or am offered these foods that I will be able to think “YUCK!” and not eat it or even want it. I want to have balsamic vinagrette on my salad and not sit there wishing it was ranch. PLEASE, Lord!!! I went vegan for one week. I wish I could do it permanently, but I’m a carnivore. I love meat too much. It did turn me on to many foods that I have incorporated into my diet which help. My goal is to get my cholesterol low enough that I won’t have to depend on these meds any longer. I have to have the support of my friends and family. These are the people I eat with! So please… don’t push me to eat stuff I can’t. Don’t get upset if you made something I can’t eat. This is a new way of life for me, and you have to accept me for who I am. I was walking one day with a very good friend of mine and explaining this whole cholesterol diet thing and she offered me some really great words of wisdom. She said “you don’t have to explain anything to anyone. If someone offers you something you can’t have, you just say no thank you.” It was freeing hearing that. It’s that simple… no thank you.