Weight loss can help to reduce cholesterol levels for most people. There are some families with a strong history of hyperlipidaemia (high cholesterol) where weight loss has a limited effect on their levels. I've seen a slim, vegetarian, athletic teenager with a cholesterol level of 9.0 due to family history and I've also seen an overweight, middle aged man who eats pies and burgers for breakfast, lunch and dinner with a cholesterol level of 3.0! Life's not fair but these are the exceptions rather than the rule.
If you have a very high cholesterol level (greater than 8.0) or a family history of heart disease, it is a good idea to see your GP for advice. Most people will manage to significantly reduce their cholesterol levels with some weight loss.
Anecdotally, I see this all the time but I also have the results of a study on SureSlim clients which backs this up. 353 clients were followed up after an average of 61 days. Weight, total cholesterol, triglycerides (another form of harmful fat in the blood stream) and LDL (bad cholesterol) were all reduced with statistically significant results. Total cholesterol was reduced by an average of 21% and up to 56% in some cases. LDL was reduced by an average of 18% and up to 62% in some cases and triglycerides by an average of 36% and up to 94% in some cases.
So if you want to reduce your cholesterol and improve your metabolism without taking tablets, weight loss can definitely help.
Dr Martin Denby
BSc (Hons) MBChB DFFP MRCGP (UK) FRNZCGP