Q. I have had high cholesterol for many years, mostly around 335. I have taken statin drugs to lower it but I didn’t like the side effects.
I read about avocados lowering cholesterol in your column and decided to try it. I love avocados. So for two months I ate an avocado every week.
When I had my blood work done, the doctor even called me at home in the evening to give me the report. He was amazed at how well I am doing.
My cholesterol count is now 215. The doctor says to keep it up.

A. Seven months ago we heard from a reader that eating an avocado every week helped lower his cholesterol from over 200 to 176. We are pleased to learn that this also worked for you.
Research in rats has shown that adding avocado to the diet can improve desirable HDL cholesterol (Archivos de Cardiologia de Mexico, Mar. 2007). There don’t seem to be many studies in humans, but one demonstrated that an avocado-enriched diet could help lower total and LDL cholesterol while it raised HDL cholesterol (Archives of Medical Research, Winter 1996).
Avocados are rich in mono-unsaturated fatty acids, the same type found in olive oil. You seem to have found a delicious way to control your cholesterol. For other ideas, see our Guide to Cholesterol Control and Heart Health.

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  1. KLB Montgomery
    Reply

    I eat 1/4 to 1/2 an avocado per day, sometimes more. I have high HDL and overall 180, low BMI, normal triglycerides.

  2. JSM
    Reply

    I ate an avocado a day for ten weeks (together with smoked salmon or tuna and glass of white wine), in the evenings kept off cheeses and meats. My total cholesterol levels in this period went down from 7.67 (2.96 g/l) to 5.62 (2.17 g/l). HDL levels remained the same, but the ratio to total choleserol went down from 5.29 to 3.88. I also lost 4 kgs. I therefore recommend an avocado diet to reduce cholesterol levels. BTW uric acid levels went up but I was eating lentils in the evenings, and prob drinking too much alcohol.

  3. MB
    Reply

    true avocados do some good–but if you are a”sugar-holic” like me–the highly sugared foods (cookies, ice cream, candy) do more damage to raise triglycerides. These are the no no’s if you want theses lipids to go on the down count!!

  4. beau10
    Reply

    The article states “an avocado every week” – seems to mean one a week. I’ve added same to my diet.

  5. Bobbie W.
    Reply

    Reports of avocados lowering cholesterol state “one per week” but do you know if some was consumed daily or if the whole avocado was consumed at one time?
    If you do not know, can you request the info from those who were successful?
    Thanks

  6. Dustin
    Reply

    Most people truly don’t realize how effective diet is on cholesterol. Most people can get their cholesterol under control by eating the right foods and exercising.

  7. Nuri L.
    Reply

    Do some good research on the science of Cold Pressed Coconut Oil, I think you will be excited about the healing advantages it provides!

  8. beau10
    Reply

    I replaced my statin (truly nasty side-effects) with natural vitamins, supplements and food. At a suggestion, I began eating one red grapefruit a day. It has worked for me. The article about the positive affect of the avocado is great and will pass the information on to friends. Thanks.

  9. Ann P.
    Reply

    Re: avocado…. quite good for reducing cholesterol! As is olive oil. I have been on various statin drugs, the latest being Pravastatin, which I intend to discontinue having read many articles on how damaging statins are to the liver. And, have read that statins should only be used for those that have had heart problems..True???

  10. Matt
    Reply

    GRD: The fact that avocados have oleic acid, the same fatty acid found in olive oil, is just a health bonus for avocado eaters. The compound in avocados which is suspected to play a role in blood cholesterol regulation has to come from eating avocado or products containing avocado.

  11. CHJ
    Reply

    Does Femera significantly contribute to elevated triglyceride and cholesterol levels?
    I am taking Loveza for high triglycerides, simvastatin for cholesterol along with Diovan for hypertension. 3 months ago my triglyceride and cholesterol levels were “quite elevated” per doctor. She asked me to go on low carb diet and repeat blood work in 2 or 3 months. My total cholesterol level is now 138 and triglycerides are 115. Coincidentally, I stopped taking Femera due to side effects about 2 months ago. Another factor in the lower count may be that I have been “on vacation” for the same 2 months. What role does stress have in these numbers?
    PEOPLE’S PHARMACY RESPONSE: WE DON’T KNOW ABOUT THE EFFECT OF STRESS ON BLOOD FATS, BUT WE CAN TELL YOU THAT FEMARA (LETROZOLE) RAISED CHOLESTEROL IN MORE THAN HALF OF THE WOMEN WHO TOOK IT IN CLINICAL TRIALS. THIS IS REPORTED IN THE OFFICIAL PRESCRIBING INFORMATION: http://dailymed.nlm.nih.gov/dailymed/drugInfo.cfm?id=19740#nlm34084-4

  12. GRD
    Reply

    As mentioned here, Avocados have the same fatty acids as olive oil. Could one take some quantity of olive oil each week and get the same results? I am willing to try as Statins and Niaspan are out of the question for me.
    How much would I need (your guess)? I would guess about 1 oz. per week.
    PEOPLE’S PHARMACY RESPONSE: WE DON’T KNOW IF THE EFFECT WOULD BE THE SAME, ALTHOUGH SUBSTITUTING OLIVE OIL FOR YOUR OTHER DIETARY FATS IS WORTH A TRY. ALTHOUGH AVOCADOS ARE RICH IN MONOUNSATURATED FATS, THEY MAY ALSO HAVE OTHER COMPONENTS THAT COULD BE RELEVANT.

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