If your visit to the doctor reveals you have high cholesterol, you need to make changes to your routine and diet to improve your health and quality of life.

Why is the cholesterol level so important?  The cholesterol level in your blood increases your chances of getting heart disease. It is important to note that heart disease is the number one cause of death in both women and men in the United States.

How does this happen? Cholesterol is a fat-like substance. Excessive accumulation can block arteries, which in turn blocks the flow of blood in your veins. Without enough oxygen and blood pumping to your heart, cardiac arrest will follow.

Since no symptoms may be evident, a blood test called “Lipoprotein particle profile” is required to avoid the development of heart diseases.

Types of Cholesterol

Some types of cholesterol are considered good while others are considered bad. There are different types of blood tests to measure each type of cholesterol. A lipid profile test (or coronary risk test) includes:

-Total Cholesterol

-Low density Lipoprotein (LDL cholesterol)

-High density Lipoprotein (HDL cholesterol)

-Triglycerides (Another type of fat present in the blood)

-Very low density Lipoprotein (VLDL cholesterol)

Lipoproteins are composed of fats and protein. They transport cholesterol, triglycerides and other fats called lipids to different parts of the body through the blood stream.

HDL (good cholesterol) protects against heart diseases, so the higher the HDL, the better. A level below 40 mg / dL is low and considered a major risk factor, because this increases the development of heart disease.

High cholesterol can be hereditary and sometimes it affects young adults from an early age. This generally increases with age and is higher in men than women.

On the other hand, it is also related to our daily routine and meal habits.

Saturated fats and meals rich in bad cholesterol like fried foods, red meats, whole milk and sausages for example, increase the negative cholesterol in our blood. In the same way, being overweight and a lack of physical exercise also elevates the level of cholesterol in our blood.

Regular physical activity (at least 30 minutes daily) can help lower LDL (bad cholesterol) and increase HDL (good) in our bodies. It also helps us to lose weight. And if we combine this with a balanced diet without fats and junk food, it will help to eliminate high cholesterol.

Although the doctor may prescribe some medication to lower our negative cholesterol in the blood, we still need to change our lifestyle. This means a healthy diet, controlling weight, daily exercise and change in your habits like stop smoking and avoid excessive alcohol.

Always stay up to date! And if you are older than 20 years of age, it is time to begin testing your cholesterol levels. It is very important and helps avoid future risks.

I hope this information has been useful!

Good luck!