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Hypocholesterolemia, low body temps, and hair loss - 33yo - input and log for 2022

Murse121

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Jul 30, 2020
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Hello all. Looking to start off 2022 on the right foot and try to systematically tackle some health issues while including a log. I have been on these boards for some time now, and I think there is a lot of useful info and helpful people here. I struggle with making sense of certain things, and making practical implementations in my life. Some of the main issues Ive been focused on are as follows:

low body temps - I generally wake up with an underarm temp of 97.3 most mornings. I have cold hands and feet most days, and sometimes ill notice that my nose is cold as well. My pulse is around 72 upon awakening. During the last 2 years, my TSH has been between 0.86 and 2.36, with 0.86 being the most recent reading this past July. My energy levels and mood arent what they were for most of my 20s. Ive added calories since this past summer, and have gained 10 pounds in the last 6 months. I would think supplemental thyroid might not be a bad idea - except for whats next -

hypocholesterolemia - My total cholesterol over the past two years has been 134, 122, 135 and most recently 111. Disclaimer that the 111 was right after recovering from covid, not sure if being ill could drop this. The medical community at large doesnt seem to worry about low total cholesterol. Rays view, and the general consensus here is that low total cholesterol is associated with high morbidity from cancer and other diseases, and that we should aim for at least 160 (perhaps 200). My cholesterol has been 120s-130s for as long as I can remember, same is true for my father. I do wonder if this is a case of correlation vs. causation (does low cholesterol really cause issues by itself?) Since the summer, I have upped carbs in general, mostly in the form of fruits. I probably get at least 150g of carbs from fruit alone, and plenty of other carbs from sugar, lactose, and some, but not too many starches. Most of my fat intake is milk/cheese based. Ive also added a tablespoon of refined coconut oil per day. I wonder how important the focus on total cholesterol actually is, but as a precursor for steroid production, perhaps I do in fact need more. I know peat and others have said not to supplement thyroid if cholesterol is under 200.

Hair loss - Ive gradually lost hair since approx. age 17 - starting with the temples/temple points/hairline. The progression has been mostly slow and insidious. This year I feel like things have accelerated, and Im noticing loss in the crown for the first time. The loss at the temples and hairline has accelerated, taking a sharper V vs U shape. Overall, im lucky enough to have decent thickness where you might not notice the loss from certain angles if I keep my hair somewhat longer. Harsh lighting, however, will expose the loss. If I had to grade it, Id say I was between a norwood II and III. Scalp itch has been present in the temples and less so the crown. Hair seems to have decreased in overall quality. Grows oddly, kinky in certain areas, poorer texture, etc.

2021 was a rough year for me, and I get that it was for many others. Some things that happened that increased my overall stress burden included:
-finding out spouse was an alcoholic and her losing her job
-childs mother (not my spouse) going away to rehab during this same period
-losing my job as an RN due to vaxxx mandate

Some other health issues and tendencies that might provide some insight:
-Have been generally thin for most of my life - 6'1" - currently 175 - 165 earlier this year. graduated HS weighing 150ish - was as heavy as 196 when I focused heavily on bodybuilding and eating everything in sight
-mild depression
-moderate anxiety in social situations - much more so as a child compared to now
-questionable sleep - I probably average 6-7 hours, seldom remember dreams, have night terrors or panicked waking up with pounding heart probably once weekly (liver/serotonin/adrenaline issues?)
-left sided varicocele
-stomach aches/bloating - much more as a child - gradually decreased with aging. This happens 1-2x per month now. I could never pinpoint a specific food that was irritating
-rapidly increased graying in scalp/beard hair within the last several years
-hair loss in the lateral areas of the calves - I do find this somewhat puzzling as body hair in the upper arms and and shoulders is increasing
-acne vs. rosacea upper cheeks
-allergy symptoms - sneezing, itchy eyes, runny nose upon awakening. This lessons as the day goes on.
-scalp psoriasis starting when I was 21.

Some labs over the past few years:

PTH - 19pg/ml (2/20)
prolactin - 8.3ng/ml,(2/20), 8.1(10/20), 7.4(7/21)
TSH - 2.36miU/L(2/20), 1.31(10/20), 0.86(7/21)
total cholesterol 134mg/dl(2/20), 122(10/20), 135(7/21), 111(12/21)
DHEAs - 337mcg/dl(7/21)
SHBG - 49nmol/L(7/21)
total testosterone - 713ng/dl(7/21)
progesterone - tested once only out of curiosity 12/21 - lab listed as <0.5ng/ml (did not give a more specific value)
vitamin d - 39ng/ml(2/20), 47(12/21) - has been low in past years in the 20s

Some general areas I'd like some feedback on: Is my focus on getting cholesterol levels up appropriate or misguided? Does it make sense to wait to get levels up before even considering supplementing thyroid? My calorie intake is somewhere between 2300-2800 most days. I usually eat for satiety. PUFA is between 3-8g. Principles are fairly peaty - fruits, sugars, milk, smaller amounts of starches, protein usually between 100 and 140g. Fats are primarily saturated. Am I under eating, or is eating to satiety appropriate? Should I be adding carbs/sat fats until my temps, and/or cholesterol come up? Supplements are pretty minimal at the moment - K2 mk7 200mcg/day(mk4 seem to give increased scalp itch??), D3 2000/day, taurine 1g/day, Casein protein post workout. I do fully body workouts 3x a week. I usually keep them at an hour to 1 hour, 15 minutes. I took cyproheptadine 0.5-1mg before bed for about 1.5 months. Felt pretty good, increased appetite, reduced acne, improved digestion. felt like tooth sensitivity may have increased so I stopped it for now. Given the increased graying, I wonder if an increased emphasis on copper intake, checking iron levels/etc. might be warranted. I also am a bit confused on temps. Ive been taking underarm with an electronic thermometer that gives a reading after about 10 seconds. I see some disagreement about this. I see others mentioning ear thermometers, oral, etc.

My goals for the year are:
Improve general mood, energy levels and body temps. Correct cholesterol levels if appropriate. Get more in tune with my body. I would really love to regrow some hair, or at least figure out how to stabilize further loss. I have decided to restart scalp massaging ala. Rob English, was actually toying with the idea of consulting with him. I did these massages inconsistently a few years ago, but I felt like the nature of my work prevented my from giving it my best effort. I am hopefully in the running for a less stressful job, so that might help. My plan so far is to continue to increase calories carefully. More coconut oil, more fructose, etc. Red light might be worth investigating, but Im not sure of the best place to start for red light.

Thank you to anyone who was willing to read through this. Any and all input is appreciated. I plan on posting 1-2x per month with updates to keep myself accountable. Overall, I feel like Im not in terrible shape. Some of my peers are much worse off, and I feel blessed for the health that I do have. Aside from hairloss, I dont fixate on most the problems Ive listed. I wanted to do my best to give context for feedback. I wish you all a great 2022! Thanks again
 

Zsazsa

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I found that eating eggs with runny yolks + black pepper really enhances cholesterol absorption from food and reflects in the blood test.
 

Murse121

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I found that eating eggs with runny yolks + black pepper really enhances cholesterol absorption from food and reflects in the blood test.
Thanks for the tip Zsazsa. I actually love eggs, but its seems as ive gotten older, I dont tolerate them as well. After eatings eggs, I often get throat tightness, fullness feeling, to where it can be really unpleasant. Not sure if this is a mild allergy or reflux. I do try eggs every few weeks and its hit and miss - sometimes this happens, sometimes not. Will try with a lot of black pepper next time.
 

Zsazsa

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Nov 23, 2016
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Thanks for the tip Zsazsa. I actually love eggs, but its seems as ive gotten older, I dont tolerate them as well. After eatings eggs, I often get throat tightness, fullness feeling, to where it can be really unpleasant. Not sure if this is a mild allergy or reflux. I do try eggs every few weeks and its hit and miss - sometimes this happens, sometimes not. Will try with a lot of black pepper next time.
That sounds like a mild allergy. You could try to figure out if you it is to the egg white or to the yolk.

You don't need a lot of pepper, be careful because it can cause allergy. You can just add it to high cholesterol foods to increase absorption.
 

jomamma007

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Jul 16, 2021
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Dam you sound exactly like me to a T. I haven’t been able to figure out things either, but sometimes Thyroid can actually normalize low cholesterol because

“Glucose metabolism provides the (acetate) substance for making cholesterol, and thyroid hormone is a basic regulator of glucose metabolism—in an extremely stressed system, cholesterol synthesis will be limited.”- Ray Peat 2021

You have nothing to lose in trying thyroid or progesterone.

Also If I was taking underarm temperature, I’d use a normal basal body thermometer, and leave it there for 10 minutes before taking the temp.

Danny Roddy has suggested safer antibiotics for lowering cholesterol.

Good luck
 
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Zsazsa

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Nov 23, 2016
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You might find some useful info here. Cholesterol – Search Results – Functional Performance Systems (FPS) . I think I have heard Peat say in interviews that oranges are one of the best things to increase cholesterol.
I think oranges - especially OJ - would increase triglycerids? In that case, it would certainly raise total cholesterol numbers. OJ and honey are both great to increase triglycerids. I think a trigs number between 60 and 100 is a healthy range.

My sister in law showed me he lab results a few months ago and I was alarmed to see her low total cholesterol and I memorized her triglycerids number = 39. Of course she was very happy about it since her doctor praised her numbers. I was so intrigued about how an obese woman whose diet includes daily doses of beer and cheetos could have such low numbers and asked a nutrition professor what would cause low cholesterol. His answer was that the main cause would be poor nutrition absorption and/or poor liver function.

@Murse121 another suggestion I have for you is to use butter and freshly minced pepper (again, don't overdo it) to prepare most of your food.
 

Murse121

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Zsazsa, Sunny and Jomamma, I have been eating 2-3 oranges per day as of late. The 'cara cara' variety that my grocery store has had lately are delicious. Have been drinking a variety of OJ that is much more fresh than any of the other typical varieties. The difference in taste is amazing. Adding honey seems like a great idea as well. Thanks for the ideas!
 

Zsazsa

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Zsazsa, Sunny and Jomamma, I have been eating 2-3 oranges per day as of late. The 'cara cara' variety that my grocery store has had lately are delicious. Have been drinking a variety of OJ that is much more fresh than any of the other typical varieties. The difference in taste is amazing. Adding honey seems like a great idea as well. Thanks for the ideas!
Cara cara are indeed awesome! But keep in mind that fiber blocks chloesterol absorption, hence my OJ suggestion. OTOH keep an eye on glucose spikes... It's a juggling act!
 

Murse121

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Cara cara are indeed awesome! But keep in mind that fiber blocks chloesterol absorption, hence my OJ suggestion. OTOH keep an eye on glucose spikes... It's a juggling act!
Thanks! Will keep that in mind
 

Murse121

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Hey, if you have been supplementing with Niacinamide, this could be driving your chloesterol to the bottom
No Niacinamide use. I do wonder if my recent cholesterol level was taken too closely after being ill.
 

Zsazsa

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Chris Masterjohn just did a series of Instagram posts on Manganese, on the latest one he highlighted that Mn deficiency leads to low cholesterol. Something to look into...
 

Murse121

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Thanks for the tip! Great to hear other ideas regarding low cholesterol. Aside from liver function and low calories , there really isn’t a ton of talk about low cholesterol.
 

Vanset

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how much saturated fat and dietary fiber do you eat in a day? what are your sources of fats? the best way to boost cholesterol would be dietary sources of myristic, palmitic and lauric fatty acids. Butter, coconut oil, palm oil are some of the best fats for increasing cholesterol. Butter being much better than coconut oil. Fats that are half/half sat/mono are not good at this because of the oleic acid portion, exception being palm oil because the saturated portion is palmitic which is very good at raising cholesterol.

another way is dietary cholesterol, so egg yolks. 3 a day should be sufficient, but you don't react well to them. have u tried just separating the whites from yolks and eating them raw?

jlr.org/article/S0022-2275(20)41497-X/pdf

 
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Murse121

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how much saturated fat and dietary fiber do you eat in a day? what are your sources of fats? the best way to boost cholesterol would be dietary sources of myristic, palmitic and lauric fatty acids. Butter, coconut oil, palm oil are some of the best fats for increasing cholesterol. Butter being much better than coconut oil. Fats that are half/half sat/mono are not good at this because of the oleic acid portion, exception being palm oil because the saturated portion is palmitic which is very good at raising cholesterol.

another way is dietary cholesterol, so egg yolks. 3 a day should be sufficient, but you don't react well to them. have u tried just separating the whites from yolks and eating them raw?

jlr.org/article/S0022-2275(20)41497-X/pdf


My sources of fats are mostly dairy via milk and cheeses. Recently, I’ve added 1-2 tablespoons of refined coconut oil per day, and started eating some organic ice cream after dinner. My intake is approx 40-50g of total fat most days with around 15-25g of fiber. I realize I could probably go up more on the fats and I’m doing that slowly. Thank you for the suggestion of separating the yolks and eating them raw. I also worry about eggs because many of them at my local grocery store don’t seem to have a favorable profile of saturated/unsaturated. But I will give that a try. Thank you for the advice Vanset!
 

Murse121

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Hey all, just giving a little update. Have been tracking morning temps more consistently and recently purchased a braun thermoscan 6 ear thermometer. Waking morning temps have been irregular still, ranging as low as 97.4 up to 98.1. After breakfast, temps drop consistently down to 97.4-97.7. This still suggest higher functioning of stress hormones. Going to continue on with slowly adding more calories and fats. In addition to my previous narrative, one thing that has been occurring lately is waking up with alternating congestion/runny nose and sneezing. This is usually, but not always relieved by a bowel movement. To me, this suggests possible endotoxin overload and/or elevated estrogen, sluggish liver along with impaired thyroid. Interested in anyone elses input on that, but for now, Im going to make a carrot salad a habit for the afternoon, may be adding activated charcoal/ bamboo shoots later. Out of curiosity, had some other labs done recently in the form of liver panel, iron panel, and rt3.
here's some results:

albumin: 4.9 g/dl
globulin: 2.4 g/dl
A/G ratio: 2.0
Bili total: 0.7 mg/dl
alk phos: 66 U/L
AST: 26 U/L
ALT: 36 U/L

ferritin: 60 ng/ml
iron total: 149 mcg/dl
iron binding capacity: 277 mcg/dl
saturation: 54% (H)

reverse t3: 20 ng/dl

So everything pretty much in range, except for saturation % at 54. Arguably rt3 on the high side of normal (sometimes suggestive of elevated stress hormones/poor conversion?) perhaps total bili could be lower and total iron as well. I hear mixed things on ferritin interpretation. Overall, I'm not convinced of the utility of doing lots of bloodwork at this point in time for me. I may just streamline things in the future for something like cholesterol, tsh, prolactin, d3 every 3-6 months. If someone has other thoughts on either interpretation or suggestion of other labs, I'm all ears.

Thanks again for anyone reading, I appreciate the input. Its been good for me to kind of chronicle this health journey from a metabolic/peat perspective. Maybe the info could eventually help someone else in a similar situation.
 

Peatful

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Your waking temps aren’t atrocious....unless it is pure stress hormones.

What is happening after breakfast is a red flag.

So with that:
What is this breakfast meal?

What are your full day kcal?

In your opinion, what, in the simplest explanation possible, has you stuck in a stressed state?
 

Murse121

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Your waking temps aren’t atrocious....unless it is pure stress hormones.

What is happening after breakfast is a red flag.

So with that:
What is this breakfast meal?

What are your full day kcal?

In your opinion, what, in the simplest explanation possible, has you stuck in a stressed state?
Breakfast is typically fruit - cantolope, freshed squeezed OJ, with some berries thrown in - followed by some 2% milk, a few slices of rye sourdough, and several parmesean cheese squares. Relatively high carb, low fat, moderate protein. This type of meal has never bothered my stomach. Full day kcal hovering around 27-2800, feels pretty satiating but im slowly ramping up.

As far as what has me stuck in a stressed state - im having trouble thinking of anything profound. When it comes to emotional stress - there is nothing crazy stressful - currently unemployed but have a job on the horizon. Perhaps i just need more time in a surplus. I do still work out 3x weekly - I dont feel that I overdue it, workouts last just over an hour. I guess i could take a full break from that, but I already do every 6-8 weeks in the form of 2 weeks off. I feel better mentally working out.
 

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