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Old 10-08-2007, 08:29 AM
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Niacin

Has anyone taken this shit before? I have high cholesterol (yes, that's right at 28) and my doctor is telling me to take the vitamin Niacin. Apparently, it will lower it naturally. He warned me that this vitamin causes hot flashes. Anyone ever experienced these hot flashes and how long will they last?
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Old 10-08-2007, 08:53 AM
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There is "flush-free" niacin - but it still gave me a massive hot flash - it was nauseating actually. dh, who needed it, didn't have as an extreme reaction - but he's got 70 lbs on me.

ya might consider taking it at home when you have no where to go for at least 1/2 an hour... or splitting up your dosage.

make sure what you pick up is nicotinic acid that is the form that is reported to help with lowering LDL.

Your doc can give you a prescription for nicotinic acid, then you can be assured you are getting a regulated form of it.

Good luck & welcome to your late 20's
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Old 10-08-2007, 08:55 AM
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Stop eating a crappy diet, woman! Take the niacin to help, change your diet (yeah, I know, now you wanna kick me really hard! ).
Google turns up some interesting info on niacin. Check it out.
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Old 10-08-2007, 09:00 AM
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I felt like i was on fucking fire


and nauseous....I decided to take it at night, and my skin crawled.


seriously( IMO) because of its effect on ME, I just bought foods with Niacin in it, and added it to my day
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Old 10-08-2007, 09:08 AM
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GREAT. I am very sensitive to side effects, so I'm sure this will be pleasant. I have lost 5 lbs. since my last visit, but the cholesterol was the same. I thought the weight loss and cutting out fast food for lunch would help. Guess not. My mom has cholesterol issues (but she is 50). He said it was hereditary.

Dusty cat, the bottle doesn't say nicotinic acid on it anywhere. Shit.
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Old 10-08-2007, 09:26 AM
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Change to whole wheat, lots of veggies, cut down animal protein.


And don't kill me
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Old 10-08-2007, 09:34 AM
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Niacin is a pretty typical "first response" - I don't know how high your numbers are or what your ratios are but usually meds come next. Sorry I know it stinks.

In all seriousness - Jenn is right - dietary changes! Not so much what you don't eat but what you choose to substitue with - giving up fast food - good! but replaced with a big dark green salad (like spinach) - better.

The cholesterol issue is a hot topic in the medical community because there is a lot of re-examination going on now - I think this was really kick started by the author of the South Beach Diet - I forget his name... but the possible relationship between excessive insuln production (associated with a diet high in simple carbohydrates) and high cholesterol levels is now the hot topic.

Even if your doc doen't ascribe to eliminating simple carbs (the "white foods" - bread, white rice,white potatoes, etc) and overly processed foods, and substituing more raw & fresh foods as a means to control your cholesterol - look at it this way - it can't hurt a person to eat fresher & less processed.

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Old 10-08-2007, 05:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jenn View Post
Change to whole wheat, lots of veggies, cut down animal protein.


And don't kill me
I second all of this, including the "don't hurt me" part. I am positive that with some changes, you can have a healthy cholesterol.
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Old 10-08-2007, 06:35 PM
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Eat a lot of oats.
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Old 10-08-2007, 06:53 PM
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Are you people saying that I can't eat anymore bacon?
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Old 10-08-2007, 07:29 PM
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It's the dozen krispy cremes for breakfast that's doing it!

Seriously though- my dad had high cholesterol as well and was on meds for it, but since my mom & i are both health fanatic-ish types, he managed to bring it down by switching to a diet of whole grains, legumes, fruits, veggies, nuts, seeds, lean animal protein (he wasn't about to give it up so we let it be), and very occasional red meat, plus he now exercises 4-5x a week (cardio).

I bet you could do this without medication, especially since you're young.
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Old 10-08-2007, 07:37 PM
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Quote:
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Are you people saying that I can't eat anymore bacon?
How much bacon do you eat, woman?
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Old 10-08-2007, 08:10 PM
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Not enough, Rivkah.

No, seriously. I rarely eat bacon. My eating habits are not as bad as I make it out to be. It's kind of frustrating because I don't think I eat bad enough to warrant high cholesterol.
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Old 10-08-2007, 08:45 PM
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Not enough, Rivkah.

No, seriously. I rarely eat bacon. My eating habits are not as bad as I make it out to be. It's kind of frustrating because I don't think I eat bad enough to warrant high cholesterol.
Shelley, you could be a COMPLETE VEGAN and still have high cholesterol if it is hereditary. My grandmother ate bacon every day of her life for 87 years and never had high cholesterol. She also ate a typical "meat and 3" in which the 3 were cooked in animal fat. She was super healthy and would have lived longer if not for a broken hip.

ON the other hand, I had a law professor in his early to mid 30's who was a vegetarian, ran 10 miles a day and was an Army Ranger. He had a massive heart attack and almost died. His heart attack was due to his high cholesterol and huge amount of plaque in his arteries. He had a QUAD bypass and made it by the skin of his teeth. His heart disease was hereditary.
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Old 10-08-2007, 09:01 PM
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^My track coach in college who ran everyday, was in his 40's and the healthiest man I had met, nearly died of a severe heart attack.
Yep, it's definately hereditary. My DH takes meds for HBP and HC. He started taking them at 30 years old! He did start eating better and exercising as well, but eventually he was put on meds.
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Old 10-09-2007, 10:55 AM
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Some people are more prone to heart and cardiovascular problems than other people, but that doesn't mean it's hopeless. Consider the results found through dietary modification in the Framington study, Dean Ornish's patients, and Joel Fuhrman's patients. It sort of sucks, but you owe it to yourself to make some changes, which will at least improve your general health and reduce the amount of either medication or niacin you need to take. You're too hot to go through premature hot flashes. ;)

I really do understand where you're coming from though. My grandfather died of heart disease despite being 5'4" and about 112 lbs, and walking 5 miles a day, everyday, until he has his lower right leg amputated. I know that my chances of heart disease are ridiculously high from eating a typical healthy diet, but again, I figure I owe it to myself to reduce my risk as much as possible, you know?
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Old 10-09-2007, 12:33 PM
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The thing that doesn't make any sense is that NONE of my grandparents had weight or cholesterol problems. My mom didn't have problems until she was 50. Sucks for me.
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Old 10-09-2007, 01:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rivkah View Post
Some people are more prone to heart and cardiovascular problems than other people, but that doesn't mean it's hopeless. Consider the results found through dietary modification in the Framington study, Dean Ornish's patients, and Joel Fuhrman's patients. It sort of sucks, but you owe it to yourself to make some changes, which will at least improve your general health and reduce the amount of either medication or niacin you need to take.
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Old 10-09-2007, 01:44 PM
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Some people are more prone to heart and cardiovascular problems than other people, but that doesn't mean it's hopeless. Consider the results found through dietary modification in the Framington study, Dean Ornish's patients, and Joel Fuhrman's patients. It sort of sucks, but you owe it to yourself to make some changes, which will at least improve your general health and reduce the amount of either medication or niacin you need to take. You're too hot to go through premature hot flashes. ;)

I really do understand where you're coming from though. My grandfather died of heart disease despite being 5'4" and about 112 lbs, and walking 5 miles a day, everyday, until he has his lower right leg amputated. I know that my chances of heart disease are ridiculously high from eating a typical healthy diet, but again, I figure I owe it to myself to reduce my risk as much as possible, you know?
I am trying my best to make changes! You are absolutely right!
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Old 10-09-2007, 05:09 PM
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Do you know what your HDL levels are shelley?

My mother has textbook FH and a SUPER HIGH cholesterol level despite taking medications and eating well - and she is a tiny woman (4'11" and 95lbs!). The docs suspect that because her HDL is higher than the norm, it's protected her from any sort of cardiovascular disease that most people would have gotten.

I was recently tested for the first time because my mom's doc thought I might have inherited what she had...turns out my cholesterol is a little on the high side (despite eating well, exercising and not being overweight) but because I inherited my mom's high HDL levels, I'm ok and I don't need any meds.
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Old 10-09-2007, 06:57 PM
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Here are my levels:

Total Cholesterol: 212 H
TGL: 70
HDL-C: 39
LDL CH CAL: 159 (this is where the problem is, should be under 129)
VLDL: 14
HDL Risk: 5.4
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Old 10-10-2007, 01:37 PM
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Had to do some quick conversions since we Canadians use mmol/L instead of mg/dL. Your overall cholesterol is a bit high and your HDL is a bit lower than "normal" levels...though American guidelines may be slightly different?

At any rate, are you completely averse to taking any sort of medication? I think in your case, a statin would probably be best and better than niacin. I know you can use the two in conjunction with each other as well but since you are sensitive to side effects you probably don't want to do both. If you want to bring down your LDL ASAP, Lipitor (which is one of the meds my mom takes) would probably be your best bet. Niacin has more of a tendency to slowly bring up HDL levels rather than bring down LDL.
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Old 10-10-2007, 01:49 PM
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Do you feel comfortable posting a typical's day diet here? There might be some easy tweaks that would help.

This must be really frustrating for you. I'm really glad you got tested young so you can be in control early.
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Old 10-23-2007, 12:26 PM
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Shelley - I have super high cholesterol, I have been on medication since I was 10 years old. I think if you eat a few crackers and take an asprin with the Niacin it is supposssed to hep with the flushing. I am not positive about the asprin, I will have to ask my dad.
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Old 10-23-2007, 12:43 PM
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I can't believe that, Lov2Shop! You are so small! The doctor did say to take a baby aspirin beforehand and it would reduce the flushing.

Rivkah my diet really fluctuates. Some weeks I'll do very well and then some weekends (when we go out of town) I eat terrible. Today I had strawberry oatmeal for breakfast and a salad for lunch. Yesterday I had a Nutri-Grain bar for breakfast and Arby's for lunch, spaghetti for dinner. I normally do not eat fast food for lunch and yesterday was an exception.
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