Elevated VLDL - lovebird

by Micha

My 10 year old peach faced lovebird hen's blood values came back with an elevated VLDL at 92. She's already on a low fat, low protein diet to help manage her hormones and it's not high in cholesterol as well. She's always been a steady 57(ish) grams. Her doctor told me to give her red palm oil to help bring it down. I'm also giving her oatmeal every morning now. Can you please tell me what else I might do to lower her VLDL level? Is there some kind of medication we could be looking at? She's getting a series of Lupron now.

Her typical diet consists of Roudybush Low Fat Maintenance crumbles as the staple with a pinch of flax seeds and wild blueberry extract powder sprinkled on top. Cooked oatmeal with a sweet veggie or fruit for breakfast. A medley of veggies for dinner, sometimes with cooked grains and sometimes with fruit. Red palm oil before bed. Then other seeds and nuts only for training, foraging, and an occasional treat.

Thank you.

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Mar 02, 2013
Bird with elevated triglycerides
by: The Avian Vet

Her triglycerides are more important than the VLDL. I cannot tell you if your bird had liver disease based on the values you have provided. In my opinion the body weight is within normal limits (but that does not mean that this bird is not over weight, I can only tell that with a physical exam). Red Palm Oil is an excellent supplement even if your bird is not having problems, and oatmeal is a terrific treat. Your bird should be on pellet diet to ensure a complete and proper balance of nutrients. If you wiuld like me to review all of the blood work for a second opinion, I am happy to set up a phone appointment.

Dr B

Mar 01, 2013
by: Msminnamouse

I'm sorry, I don't understand some things.

Oatmeal being high in fat and not much else:
I forgot to mention that I make the oatmeal with water, not milk. The package says that it's only 3g of fat for a 1/2 dry amount.
I don't give her nearly that amount, only about a tablespoon cooked (it expands when cooked so it's even less) and she only eats a small portion of it.
Saturated fat .5g, Polyunsaturated 1g, Monounsaturated 1g.
Fiber for the same 1/2 dry amount is 4g, which doctors say helps to lower VLDL.

I feed as according to the package for her size.

I don't understand how organic can bring down her cholesterol?

The flax seeds are high in Omega 3 fatty acids, a healthy kind of fat.
The other seeds, I only use a small amount. What else can I use for foraging toys and training? The seeds are tiny and won't work for fruits, veggies, or pellets.

Thank you so much for responding and providing this service!

Editor's note: Linda is a helpful, smart lady that answers many questions here but, as she stated, is not an avian vet. Tracie

Feb 28, 2013
Elevated VLDL - lovebird
by: Linda

I'm not the avian vet, and he will come along to answer this in a while if he's not too busy with his practice.

You are feeding this bird way too much food, and I know you've heard the old saying "killing with kindness" because this is what you are doing.

What you need to be feeding is the organic pellets as 80-85% of the diet with fruit and veggies given in small amounts several times a week. You can find Harrisons organic pellets here if you wish to change to something else or use it in addition to the Rowdy Bush you're feeding. We mix our Harrisons for our Amazons and read on package how much to feed. Since your bird is already on pellets, she will like the Harrisons which comes in two flavors, regular and pepper. The pepper would be a nice addition to her diet.

Leave off the oatmeal as it is high in fat and not much else. Leave off all the seeds because they are high in fat and carbs with very little protein, vitamins and minerals.

You must get this bird on the right kind of diet quickly. All the meds in the world will not help your bird if you are overfeeding her every day, so get some of the Harrisons small size pellets and begin to feed her a real low fat diet.

The Red Palm oil is a good idea, so continue it, only in small amounts as your avian vet has instructed you. If they did not tell you how much, please call and make sure about it.

To recap, your bird needs less fatty foods and more organic high quality pellets in order to get back to normal levels. It can take 6 months to a year for a bird to get completely back to normal, so you may wish to have those levels done again in 3-4 months depending on when you get new diet started.

Keep in touch and thanks for writing,

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