Lipoprotein(a): A big genetic risk for heart disease

  • CC: risk of elevated Lp(a), increased risk for heart disease — 3.7x risk of aortic stenosis [ref]
  • CT: risk of elevated Lp(A), increased risk for heart disease, increased risk of aortic stenosis
  • TT: normal
  • GG: likely elevated Lp(a), increased risk for heart disease — 2x risk of aortic stenosis [ref][ref]
  • AG: likely elevated Lp(A), increased risk for heart disease
  • AA: normal

Lifehacks:

  • Apheresis, where they run your blood through a machine to remove the LDL particles, is considered effective, but expensive and inconvenient.[ref]
  • Niacin (vitamin B3) has been used for decades to lower the risk of heart disease. Studies show that 1 -3 g/day lowers Lp(a) levels by an average of 30–40%.[ref][ref][ref] Most studies use the type of niacin that causes flushing.
  • Overall, lowering your LDL cholesterol numbers can help lower Lp(a) some since Lp(a) is the carrier for LDL. Here is a good article on it from the Cleveland Clinic. How do you lower your cholesterol with diet? That seems to be the million dollar question. A more whole food, plant-based diet, in comparison with a higher meat and fat based diet, works to lower cholesterol for some people. It may be that you need to try out several diets — Mediterranean, DASH, etc — and test to see what works for your body.
  • One study showed Gingko Biloba reduced Lp(a) levels. The study used 120mg, twice a day and showed a 23% decrease in Lp(a). [ref]

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Debbie Moon

Debbie Moon

Science writer exploring the intersection of genetics, nutrition, and circadian rhythm: https://www.geneticlifehacks.com and https://www.longevitylifhehacks.me