Disease: High Cholesterol: Frequently Asked Questions

    1) What Is Cholesterol?

    Cholesterol is a waxy, fat-like substance that occurs naturally in all parts of the body and is made by the liver. Cholesterol also is present in foods we eat. People need cholesterol for the body to function normally. Cholesterol is present in the cell walls or membranes everywhere in the body, including the brain, nerves, muscles, skin, liver, intestines, and heart.

    2) Why Should I Be Concerned About Cholesterol?

    Too much cholesterol in your body means that you have an increased risk of getting cardiovascular diseases such as heart disease. If you have too much cholesterol in your body, the cholesterol can build up on the walls of the arteries that carry blood to your heart. This buildup, which occurs over time, causes less blood and oxygen to get to your heart. This can cause chest pain and heart attacks.

    3) What's the Difference between "Good" and "Bad" Cholesterol?

    HDL (high density lipoprotein) cholesterol is known as good cholesterol. HDL takes the bad cholesterol out of your blood and keeps it from building up in your arteries. LDL (low density lipoprotein) cholesterol is known as bad cholesterol because it can build up on the walls of your arteries and increase your chances of getting cardiovascular disease. When being tested for high cholesterol, you want a high HDL number and a low LDL number.

    © 2005-2015 WebMD, LLC. All rights reserved.
    Source article on WebMD

    4) How Much Cholesterol Is Too Much?

    Doctors recommend your cholesterol stay below 200. Here is the breakdown:

    Total Cholesterol Category Less than 200 Desirable 200-239 Borderline High 240 and above High

    LDL Cholesterol LDL  - Cholesterol Category Less than 100 Optimal 100-129 Near optimal/above optimal 130-159 Borderline high 160-189 High 190 and above Very high

    HDL (good) cholesterol protects against heart disease, so for HDL, higher numbers are better. A level less than 40 is low and is considered a major risk factor because it increases your risk for developing heart disease. HDL levels of 60 or more help to lower your risk for heart disease.

    Triglyceride levels that are borderline high (150-199) or high (200 or more) may require treatment in some people.

    5) Can I Lower My Risk for Heart Disease If I Lower My Cholesterol?

    Your risk for heart disease is lower when you have low total cholesterol and low LDL.

    6) What Makes My Cholesterol Levels Go Up?

    Eating foods such as meats, whole milk dairy products, egg yolks, and some kinds of fish can make your cholesterol levels go up. Being overweight can make your bad cholesterol go up and your good cholesterol go down. Also, after women go through menopause, their bad cholesterol levels tend to go up.

    © 2005-2015 WebMD, LLC. All rights reserved.
    Source article on WebMD

    4) How Much Cholesterol Is Too Much?

    Doctors recommend your cholesterol stay below 200. Here is the breakdown:

    Total Cholesterol Category Less than 200 Desirable 200-239 Borderline High 240 and above High

    LDL Cholesterol LDL  - Cholesterol Category Less than 100 Optimal 100-129 Near optimal/above optimal 130-159 Borderline high 160-189 High 190 and above Very high

    HDL (good) cholesterol protects against heart disease, so for HDL, higher numbers are better. A level less than 40 is low and is considered a major risk factor because it increases your risk for developing heart disease. HDL levels of 60 or more help to lower your risk for heart disease.

    Triglyceride levels that are borderline high (150-199) or high (200 or more) may require treatment in some people.

    5) Can I Lower My Risk for Heart Disease If I Lower My Cholesterol?

    Your risk for heart disease is lower when you have low total cholesterol and low LDL.

    6) What Makes My Cholesterol Levels Go Up?

    Eating foods such as meats, whole milk dairy products, egg yolks, and some kinds of fish can make your cholesterol levels go up. Being overweight can make your bad cholesterol go up and your good cholesterol go down. Also, after women go through menopause, their bad cholesterol levels tend to go up.

    © 2005-2015 WebMD, LLC. All rights reserved.
    Source article on WebMD

    7) What Can I Do To Lower My Cholesterol Levels?

    You can lower your cholesterol levels by making changes to your lifestyle. Here are some tips.

    • Eat foods with less fat, saturated fat and cholesterol.

    • Take off the skin and fat from meat, poultry and fish.

    • Broil, bake, roast, or poach instead of frying foods.

    • Eat lots of fruits and vegetables everyday.

    • Eat lots of cereals, breads, rice, and pasta made from whole grains, such as whole wheat bread or spaghetti.

    • Get lots of exercise everyday. Talk to your doctor about what are the safest and best ways for you to exercise.

    • Lose weight if you are overweight.

    • Stop smoking.

    • Take your high blood cholesterol medication as prescribed by your doctor.

    8) What Medications Are Used to Treat High Cholesterol?

    Cholesterol-lowering drugs include:

    • Statins

    • Niacin

    • Bile-acid resins

    • Fibric acid derivatives

    Cholesterol-lowering medicine is most effective when combined with a low-cholesterol diet.

    © 2005-2015 WebMD, LLC. All rights reserved.
    Source article on WebMD

    Source: http://www.rxlist.com

    Your risk for heart disease is lower when you have low total cholesterol and low LDL.

    Source: http://www.rxlist.com

    Health Services in

    Define Common Diseases

    Senior Healthcare Matters helps you find information, definitaions and treatement options for most common diseases, sicknesses, illnesses and medical conditions. Find what diseases you have quick and now.