Cholesterol Numbers: Friend or Foe?|
ALLEN, Texas — Cholesterol numbers can be quite confusing. Which one should be high or low? How can a person ensure that the numbers are normal?
First, here’s a little Cholesterol 101: the total cholesterol number is the combination of the HDL (good) cholesterol, the LDL (bad) cholesterol, and Triglycerides. According to the American Heart Association (AHA) and the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute Division of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (NHLBI), total cholesterol of less than 200 mg/dL is considered a healthy range. A total cholesterol of 240 mg/dL or higher places a person at a risk of developing coronary disease or a blockage in the arteries.
Further breakdown of cholesterol numbers and their meanings, as defined by the AHA and NHLBI, is as follows:
“One way to increase HDL numbers and decrease LDL numbers is to exercise every day,” said Dr. Clyde Sullivan, a cardiologist on the medical staff at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Allen.
According to the NHLBI, exercising at least 30 minutes per day can be a major factor in reducing total cholesterol levels. The NHLBI also recommends “Therapeutic Lifestyle Changes” (TLC), which combines eating a healthy diet, maintaining healthy weight, and exercising regularly to maintain healthy cholesterol numbers.
To read more about understanding cholesterol, please visit NHLBI/Cholesterol and AHA/Cholesterol Levels. For more information on the hospital’s services and educational classes, visit TexasHealth.org/Allen.
About Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Allen
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Doctors on the medical staff practice independently and are not employees or agents of the hospital.