Post # 1
Hi fellow bees,
Does anyone have experience with high cholesterol and pregnancy?
I struggle with cholesterol badly and I am afraid it will cause complications during my pregnancy. We finally decided to start TTC (yay!) and I am so regretful that I didn’t start addressing this earlier. I feel like a huge lazy ass and pathetic that it takes TTC for me to want to be healthy…
I read online that cholesterol levels rise naturally during pregnancy, but did anyone have high levels to start with, at the time of conception?
Did it pose health risks and/or complications?
Please share your personal experiences and enlighten me 🙁
I want to start trying right away, but I worry… My mother’s sister died from her second heart attack at 29 due to high cholesterol and stress, right after giving birth to her first (and only…) child.
I am 25, with high cholesterol (assuming it is still high, I haven’t gotten tested in a few years) and I stress all the time!
I have my doctor’s appointment next week to get tested and inform myself…… Trying not to worry over here…
Post # 3
@O.My.Heart: I have high cholesterol, and this is my first pregnancy. I have been eating better and I found ways (online) to lower my cholesterol. I watch it pretty closely. I haven’t had it checked in a few months.
The doctor wasn’t concerned at this point (I also have anxiety and low vitamin D). I assume they will check all of that again somewhere down the line.
I am hoping it doesn’t cause complications, but I assume if it is a problem my doctor will address it with me when it comes time, but right now I am doing great. Just watch your weight, go online and look at foods that lower your cholesterol (like flax seed, which you can sprinkle in your food), and exercise, exercise, exercise.
You will be fine. I applaud you for taking the time to be concerned about this before you TTC.
Post # 4
- Wedding: November 2013 - St. Augustine Beach, FL
@O.My.Heart: Definitely get a checkup and fasting blood test to determine if you need treatment. In the interim, make sure you’re eating a heart healthy diet high in fiber and low in sodium. I like to stir Benefiber into my coffee to boost my fiber intake. I also switched out canned goods for fresh or frozen veggies. We also cut out red meat. We replaced ground beef with ground turkey for burgers and tacos, and we only occasionally eat beef burgers or steaks (1-2 times a month.)
Post # 5
I had moderately high cholesterol before getting pregnant when I was overweight, then I lost most of it and got pregnant (and didn’t have another test right then). During pregnancy, my cholesterol definitely skyrocketed, but not to insanely unsafe levels. After giving birth (and some more weight loss), it’s down to 137 which is pretty darn good!
I would suggest that you do your best to eat as healthy as possible, avoiding a lot of salt and fat. Also since you stress a lot, can you find a way to manage your stress better? Maybe see a therapist, get massages, work out, or meditate? Lowering your stress is likely also to help with ttc!
Best of luck!
Post # 6
@O.My.Heart: I have high cholesterol and it worries me in terms of TTC too. I’m trying to lower it by eating healthier. Unfortunately I think the best thing is a moderate amount of exercise…still trying to get excited about that one lol mine was at 276 the last time I had it checked 🙁
Post # 7
I’ve never had it – my husband did (around 240 – 250 for his total cholesterol). But, he also doesn’t work out, doesn’t watch what he eats, etc. Honestly, becoming a lacto-ovo vegetarian put a huge dent in his cholesterol. That one change alone, and his cholesterol dropped just under 200 within a year. All of his other numbers fell 20 – 30 points – LDL, triglycerides, etc. Before that, he mostly stuck to white meat and would occasionally have a meat-free day.
Like the others are saying, start (or keep) working out. Use egg substitutes; limit the amount of cheese you eat and other processed foods. I don’t insist on this to push a vegetarian agenda, but because you can still enjoy a lot of the foods you like without it putting a dent in your cholesterol.
Gardein (most of all), Lightlife, Morningstar and Amy’s are four of my favorite vegetarian/vegan brand products. Still get to have cheese, milk (almond/soy) and so on, but without the added cholesterol. That would work best, though, if you tend to have those foods in conjunction with others (i.e., cheese on a sandwich; the milk in your cereal, etc.) if you’re very particular with taste.
Limit alcohol – too much can have a negative effect on your HDL (the “good” cholesterol).
Best of luck to you in your pregnancy, and congratulations.
Post # 8
I’m not TTC yet but I’m in the same boat. I am from a long line of hereditary high cholesterol. This has always been in the back of my mind as I also have high-stress and over the last few years, I have not been very good about exercising. I eat pretty well (no red meat, lots of fruits and veggies) but I know it won’t do as much of a difference if I don’t exercise. I’m trying to kick things back in gear since I know that in the next few years we will probably start trying and I’m terrified of the thought of of being responsible for the complications.
I would love to hear others experiences as well. So I wish you good luck and hope everything works out!
Post # 9
I’ve had high cholesterol my entire life, and was finally put on Lipitor at 22 because my level was 290. I was 5’3″ and 100 lbs, and I eat healthy and exercise, so it’s 100% hereditary, and there’s nothing I can do about it except take meds my whole life.
I stopped taking Lipitor around 1 year before we started TTC because it’s one of those “don’t take if you are pregnant or thinking about becoming pregnant…” drugs, and I didn’t want to risk any complications.
I had very little trouble conceiving and am now 33 weeks pregnant with a very healthy baby. I haven’t had my cholesterol checked since I became pregnant (to my knowledge), but I am sure if they did it would be pretty high. My Dr. hasn’t seemed concerned, and he was the one that originally diagnosed me with high cholesterol.
My understanding of cholesterol is that it’s difficult to separate the negative effects it has from other risk factors that people have who typically have high cholesterol (overweight, high blood pressure, heart disease…etc). So as long as you actively work to control all of the other issues, cholesterol is not something that you need to worry about on the very short term.
I plan to go back on meds once I have the baby (probably the same time I go back on Birth Control).