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Cholesterol is a waxy substance that is carried in your blood stream. When kept in check, it’s not a bad thing. In fact, your body needs it to help build cells.
But too much cholesterol can put you at risk for heart disease and stroke.
Your liver makes all the cholesterol your body needs. But those levels can increase based on the food you eat.
Your cholesterol reading is broken up into three parts:
Your cholesterol reading is a mix of the levels of HDL, LDL and triglycerides found in your blood. A good reading is considered anything less than 200 mg/dl total — or, broken down by each component, a reading of less than 100 mg/dl for LDL, greater than or equal to 60 mg/dl for HDL and less than 150 mg/dl for triglycerides.
About 38 percent of American adults have high cholesterol (total blood cholesterol levels greater than 200 mg/dl), according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
Making a few changes in your behaviors can help improve your cholesterol levels:
If your doctor prescribes medication to help control your cholesterol, be sure to take it as prescribed and talk to your doctor about any changes in your health.
When was the last time you had your cholesterol checked? Make an appointment with your physician for a check-up if you don’t have one on the books soon.
Your heart is in good hands when you choose us for cardiovascular care. Learn more about our high-quality heart care.
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