A while back I blogged a two-parter on LDL Cholesterol (Part 1 / Part 2). Part 1 deals with how unreliable standard blood tests are for determining your real risk. In part 2, I highlighted real world examples from the offices of doctor William Davis.
And now, I'm going to show you a real world example from a reader and (obviously) fellow high-fat paleo eater. Click here to access Patrik's NMR LipoProfile (Nmrlipo PDF) He kindly gave permission to share it with you.
The fist thing to notice is that his LDL cholesterol – calculated, just like the one you get — is a whopping 204. Bet that'd make you worry, eh? However, his actual particle number for LDL is 1417, corresponding to a measured LDL of 141, a full 63 points lower. So the cholesterol tests like the ones you get — the ones on which basis doctor prescribes statins to millions — is a full 45% overstated in this case. However, it should be noted that if you eat a lot of carbohydrates, grains in particular, it's far more likely that your measured LDL is far higher than your calculated one. In essence: same problem, opposite error.
But here's the really big deal: he has ZERO small dense LDL particles, the only ones that matter. Had he taken conventional medical advice, he'd be on statins and probably other stuff, and yet he has absolutely no risk in terms of the huge association with small dense LDL and heart disease. Read more about this on the LioPanel website:
Why cholesterol may not be enough
Why your LDL particle number is important
How can I get the NMR LipoProfile test?
Understanding your test results
Meet Theresa : Age 57
Oh, and we ought to also mention that he's got a respectable HDL of 63, as well as killer Trigs at 40 (lower than mine, at 47). Good job, Patrik. Congratulations.