By BandonBob Latest Reply 2011-03-13 23:07:16 -0500
Started 2011-02-01 09:56:35 -0600

I took the heart risk assessment from the American Heart Association and it came back that I am high risk because of the diabetes. In the test my risk because of my HDL was listed as high even though it is 47. I thought for men the goal was for the HDL to be above 40. Is that right?

8 replies

sharp971 2011-03-11 12:27:03 -0600 Report

I took niacin (3 x 500mg ) and my HDL got raised from 50 to 64. Make sure you take "Instant Release - Nicotinic Acid" form. I took Nialor brand but I think you can take any other and should work fine…

HeartHawk 2011-03-11 22:36:25 -0600 Report


You hit the nail on the head, Niacin is top dog (perhaps until they get an FDA approved CETP inhibitor drug on the market) for raising HDL. I would also point out that sustained-release works well with fewer "flush" side effects.

Finally, note that taking niacin at effective doses of over 500mg daily is tantamount to taking a drug and should only be done after consultation with a physician!


HeartHawk 2011-03-03 22:12:02 -0600 Report


Have you talked to your doc about adding high-dose niacin (1-3 grams per day)? It is the first line treatment for raising HDL. I raised mine from 29 to 61. Vitamin D can also help.


rosiern 2011-02-08 17:37:20 -0600 Report

Post-menopausal women have lower HDL's. Heredity plays a large part in cholesterol levels as well. My HDL is very low, I can't get it above 30 regardless of whatever I do. Even when I was playing racquetball daily, and walking eight miles three /week, I couldn't get it above 40. I am in a wheelchair now, resulting in being unable to exercise as I had been. So now, I am stuck with drinking grape juice or red wine!

HeartHawk 2011-02-01 23:08:27 -0600 Report


The AHA risk assessment tool is rather crude. It's cut-off for for HDL risk is at 50 rather than the traditional 40 mg/dl for men. Frankly, in the rather successful heart disease prevention and reversal program I subscribe to (Track Your Plaque) the target for HDL is 60 mg/dl. I am at 61 but I started at 29 so there are many effective ways to raise HDL (I just wrote and article on it that should be published here in the next several weeks).

More importantly, when you have other risk factors like diabetes you want to really drive your other risk factors low. Many cardiologists believe that a 60+ HDL actually negates one other risk factor. It is not as cut and dried as that (HDL is an especially complex and poorly understood factor) but it does tend to prove out when looking at large populations.


griz104 2011-02-18 09:52:15 -0600 Report

I am not a believer in HDL's..ADL"s and all that.. For years i went and had checkups every 6 months and was always told that mine were right where they should be.. Then i had a EKG and found out at sometime i had a Heart Attack and there was a small amount of damage to my Heart which in turn led to a Anginogram..That was when i found out i had over 90% blockage in 3 Areterys and had to have my By-Pass..So it goes to prove those tests are not always correct.. At least in my case they weren't…

HeartHawk 2011-03-13 23:07:16 -0500 Report


What you experienced is common (it happened to me). A great many docs are ignorant about all the other lipoproteins that cause heart disease Take a look at some of the stuff at typ.trackyourplaque.com. It is a membership site but has a lot of free stuff there and at its old site www.trackyourplaque.com. It's all aboout the OTHER stuff that causes heart disease and how to potentially cure it.


sharp971 2011-03-11 12:25:07 -0600 Report

I would suggest you get couple other , often overlooked, factors checked.
"Homocysteine" and "C-Reactive Protein" along with "B-12 serum levels" are good markers for heart disease. Shoot for B-12 > 450 and Homocysteine <7.