Cholesterol – Effects of cholesterol diet on health

Cholesterol is a fat-like substance in your blood. It builds up on the artery walls.LDL is the bad cholesterol. It causes build up on your artery walls.HDL is the good cholesterol. It helps fight build up of fats on the artery walls.Triglycerides are a different fat-like substance. It works like LDL cholesterol.Cholesterol is one of the major risk factors for heart disease.Heat disease is the number one killer of women in the United States.

Cholesterol Chart

Total Cholesterol

  • Less than 200 mg/dl……….good
  • 200-239 mg/dl…………….borderline high
  • Over 240 mg/dl……………high

LDL Cholesterol

  • Less than 100 mg/dl……….excellent
  • 100-129 mg/dl…………….average
  • 130-159 mg/dl…………….borderline high
  • 160-189 mg/dl…………….high
  • Over 190 mg/dl……………very high

HDL Cholesterol

  • Above 60 mg/dl……………very good
  • 40-59 mg/dl………………good
  • Below 40 mg/dl……………major health risk

Triglycerides

  • 150-199 mg/dl…………….borderline high
  • Above 199 mg/dl…………..high

Cholesterol affects you can control

  • Diet- Eat foods low in saturated fats and low in cholesterol. Choline is the vitamin most responsible for controlling cholesterol and fat build up in your body. A Choline supplement may be worth trying to help lower your LDL cholesterol. Weight- Being overweight can raise your LDL and lower your HDL.
  • Physical Exercise- Exercise at least 30 minute per day to lower LDL and raise your HDL.

Cholesterol affects you cannot control

  • Age- Women have lower total cholesterol than men until menopause. After menopause you must take extra care to keep your cholesterol levels in the good range.
  • Heredity- Your genes play a roll in how much cholesterol your body makes.

Now let’s determine your risk of heart disease

How many of the following heart disease risk factors do you have?

*smoke cigarettes

*high blood pressure (over 140/90) or on blood pressure medication

*HDL cholesterol lower than 40 mg/dl

*Family history of heart disease (father/brother before age 55, mother/sister before age 65)

*over age 55 (for women only, men over age 45)

How many heart disease risk factors do you have?

If you have 2 or more you need to take the Framingham cholesterol risk system to determine your heart disease risk.

Now let us determine your risk category using health factors and, if needed, your Framingham score.

  • Level I: heart disease, diabetic, or score over20% (highest risk)
  • Level II: 2 or more risk factors and a score of 10%-20% (next highest risk)
  • Level III: 2 or more risk factors and a score below 10% (moderate risk)
  • Level IV: 0 or 1 risk factors (low to moderate risk)

What you should do based on your risk level.

  • Level I. If your LDL is over 100 start a cholesterol lowering diet. If your LDL is between 100 and 129 consult your health care provider to see if drug treatment is required. If your LDL level is 130 or higher a drug treatment program is needed.
  • Level II. If your LDL is higher than 130 a cholesterol lowering diet is needed. If after 3 months your level hasn’t dropped below 130 a drug treatment may be needed.
  • Level III. If your LDL is higher than 130 a cholesterol lowering diet is needed. If your LDL is higher than 160 after using the diet for 3 months drug treatment may be needed.
  • Level IV. If your LDL is higher than 160 a cholesterol lowering diet is needed. If after 3 months your cholesterol is still above 160 drug treatment may be needed. If your LDL is over 190 drug treatment may be needed.

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