What is Cholesterol?
Posted: October 30, 2018
Cholesterol is a substance that is found in the blood. Everybody has some cholesterol. There are several types of cholesterol – “good” cholesterol and “bad” cholesterol. The “good” cholesterol helps keep your heart healthy. The problem is when there is too much “bad” cholesterol. When this happens, it can cause an increased risk of stroke and heart attack.
What are the different types of cholesterol?
There are several different types of cholesterol, here are a few that you should know:
- Total cholesterol: Don’t worry too much about this number.
- LDL cholesterol: This is the “bad” cholesterol. Having high LDL levels, increases the risk of heart attack, stroke, and peripheral artery disease (build-up of cholesterol in your blood vessels). Diet alone can decrease LDL and total cholesterol by 5-7%. Marked dietary change can lower LDL by 30%.
- HDL Cholesterol: This is the “good” cholesterol. The higher the number the better. Ways to increase this number are by having a healthy diet (salmon, nuts, olive oil), exercising, and not smoking. People with high HDL cholesterol generally have a lower risk of heart attack and stroke.
- Triglycerides: Triglycerides are technically not cholesterol. However, they’re measured in a lipid panel. Having high triglycerides likely also increases the risk of heart attack and stroke. Really high triglycerides can cause inflammation of the pancreas (pancreatitis).
What is my goal cholesterol?
Everybody’s cholesterol goal is individualized. Your provider at Low T will tell you what your cholesterol numbers should be.
What can I do to get my numbers down?
Lose weight. Here at Low T we have special diet and exercise regimens for you to follow. Concentrate on eliminating junk food (trans fat) and reducing butter, red meat, cheese (saturated fats). Increase the exercise – especially the cardio exercises such as running (get the heart rate up and get a sweat going!).
After I change my lifestyle and start on medication (if needed), how long does it take for me to see results (reflected in blood work)?
It takes anywhere from 6-12 weeks to start seeing your hard work reflected in improved blood work lab values.
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Disclaimer: This article is made available for general, entertainment and educational purposes only. The opinions expressed herein do not necessarily reflect those of Low T Center. You should always seek the advice of a licensed healthcare professional.