Cholesterol is a substance that exists in the lipids, or fats, in your blood and your body uses cholesterol to build healthy cells. However, having high cholesterol can increase your risk of heart disease.
A person with high cholesterol tends to develop fatty deposits in their blood vessels, which can eventually clog the vessels and make it difficult for enough blood to flow through the arteries. The heart in this situation may not get as much oxygen-rich blood as it needs, which increases the risk of a heart attack. Also, decreased blood flow to your brain may cause a stroke.
High cholesterol can be inherited, and it may often be the result of unhealthy lifestyle choices. It is largely preventable and treatable. A healthy diet, regular exercise and sometimes medication can go a long way toward reducing high cholesterol.
Our team is here to work with you on a healthy cholesterol level!
High cholesterol has no symptoms. A blood test is the only way to detect high cholesterol.
Cholesterol test – A blood test is taken after you have fasted for a certain number of hours. It measures your total cholesterol, triglycerides, LDL, and HDL levels. Cholesterol’s components — LDL, HDL, and triglycerides — work together for the healthy functioning of your body. But too much or too little of these fats can lead to artery damage and cardiovascular disease.
Managing Cholesterol – There are three main components of cholesterol:
- LDL (low-density lipoprotein): L for “lousy” cholesterol, because it can damage your cardiovascular system. LDL carries most of the cholesterol in the blood to be stored away for future use.
- HDL (high-density lipoprotein): H for “healthy” cholesterol that carries cholesterol from the body to the liver, where it is eliminated.
- Triglycerides: The most common type of fat in your body, triglycerides, transport (carry) and store fat in the blood. When you eat excess calories, especially sugar and alcohol, they are stored as triglycerides.
There are two main ways manage cholesterol (many patients require both): medication and changes in lifestyle. Medications are commonly prescribed if you are at high risk for cardiovascular disease (CVD), or you are at moderate risk and have additional risk factors.