High density lipoprotein prevention

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Editor-In-Chief: C. Michael Gibson, M.S., M.D. [1]; Associate Editor(s)-in-Chief: Aarti Narayan, M.B.B.S [2]; Raviteja Guddeti, M.B.B.S. [3]


Prevention of low HDL may be achieved through lifestyle modifications such as physical exercise, smoking cessation, weight loss,[1] dieting,[2] and intake of unhydrogenated monounsaturated fat.[3][4]

Primary Prevention

Shown below is a table summarizing lifestyle modifications and their effect on HDL concentration.

Physical exercise[5] 5-30% increase
Weight reduction 5-20% increase[6]
Smoking cessation 5% increase[7]
Multivitamins 31% increase in HDL
DASH diet 21% increase in HDL[8]
Low carbohydrate diet 4.5 mg/dl increase in HDL[9]
Soy protein with isoflavones 3% increase in HDL[10]
Fish oil (omega-3 fatty acid) Significant increase in HDL2 fraction[11]
Fish oil with exercise 8% increase in HDL[12]
Low fat diet 5-14% increase in HDL when combined with exercise[13]
Moderate alcohol consumption 5-10% increase in HDL[14]


  1. Berns, MA.; de Vries, JH.; Katan, MB. (1989). "Increase in body fatness as a major determinant of changes in serum total cholesterol and high density lipoprotein cholesterol in young men over a 10-year period". Am J Epidemiol. 130 (6): 1109–22. PMID 2589304. Unknown parameter |month= ignored (help)
  2. Wood, PD.; Stefanick, ML.; Dreon, DM.; Frey-Hewitt, B.; Garay, SC.; Williams, PT.; Superko, HR.; Fortmann, SP.; Albers, JJ. (1988). "Changes in plasma lipids and lipoproteins in overweight men during weight loss through dieting as compared with exercise". N Engl J Med. 319 (18): 1173–9. doi:10.1056/NEJM198811033191801. PMID 3173455. Unknown parameter |month= ignored (help)
  3. Oh, K.; Hu, FB.; Manson, JE.; Stampfer, MJ.; Willett, WC. (2005). "Dietary fat intake and risk of coronary heart disease in women: 20 years of follow-up of the nurses' health study". Am J Epidemiol. 161 (7): 672–9. doi:10.1093/aje/kwi085. PMID 15781956. Unknown parameter |month= ignored (help)
  4. Mensink, RP.; Katan, MB. (1990). "Effect of dietary trans fatty acids on high-density and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol levels in healthy subjects". N Engl J Med. 323 (7): 439–45. doi:10.1056/NEJM199008163230703. PMID 2374566. Unknown parameter |month= ignored (help)
  5. Thompson PD (1990). "What do muscles have to do with lipoproteins?". Circulation. 81 (4): 1428–30. PMID 2317921.
  6. Dattilo AM, Kris-Etherton PM (1992). "Effects of weight reduction on blood lipids and lipoproteins: a meta-analysis". Am J Clin Nutr. 56 (2): 320–8. PMID 1386186.
  7. Gepner AD, Piper ME, Johnson HM, Fiore MC, Baker TB, Stein JH (2011). "Effects of smoking and smoking cessation on lipids and lipoproteins: outcomes from a randomized clinical trial". Am Heart J. 161 (1): 145–51. doi:10.1016/j.ahj.2010.09.023. PMC 3110741. PMID 21167347.
  8. Azadbakht, L.; Mirmiran, P.; Esmaillzadeh, A.; Azizi, T.; Azizi, F. (2005). "Beneficial effects of a Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension eating plan on features of the metabolic syndrome". Diabetes Care. 28 (12): 2823–31. PMID 16306540. Unknown parameter |month= ignored (help)
  9. Nordmann, AJ.; Nordmann, A.; Briel, M.; Keller, U.; Yancy, WS.; Brehm, BJ.; Bucher, HC. (2006). "Effects of low-carbohydrate vs low-fat diets on weight loss and cardiovascular risk factors: a meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials". Arch Intern Med. 166 (3): 285–93. doi:10.1001/archinte.166.3.285. PMID 16476868. Unknown parameter |month= ignored (help)
  10. Zhan, S.; Ho, SC. (2005). "Meta-analysis of the effects of soy protein containing isoflavones on the lipid profile". Am J Clin Nutr. 81 (2): 397–408. PMID 15699227. Unknown parameter |month= ignored (help)
  11. Sacks FM, Hebert P, Appel LJ, Borhani NO, Applegate WB, Cohen JD; et al. (1994). "The effect of fish oil on blood pressure and high-density lipoprotein-cholesterol levels in phase I of the Trials of Hypertension Prevention. Trials of Hypertension Prevention Collaborative Research Group". J Hypertens Suppl. 12 (7): S23–31. PMID 7769501.
  12. Herrmann W, Biermann J, Kostner GM (1995). "Comparison of effects of N-3 to N-6 fatty acids on serum level of lipoprotein(a) in patients with coronary artery disease". Am J Cardiol. 76 (7): 459–62. PMID 7653444.
  13. Varady KA, Jones PJ (2005). "Combination diet and exercise interventions for the treatment of dyslipidemia: an effective preliminary strategy to lower cholesterol levels?". J Nutr. 135 (8): 1829–35. PMID 16046704.
  14. Rimm, EB.; Williams, P.; Fosher, K.; Criqui, M.; Stampfer, MJ. (1999). "Moderate alcohol intake and lower risk of coronary heart disease: meta-analysis of effects on lipids and haemostatic factors". BMJ. 319 (7224): 1523–8. PMID 10591709. Unknown parameter |month= ignored (help)

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