What is cholesterol?
Cholesterol is a oily, fat-like substance that is found in all of your body’s cells. It is essential for many important bodily functions, including:
- Building and maintaining cell membranes
- Producing hormones
- Digesting fats
- Producing vitamin D
Types of cholesterol
Low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol:
Because excessive levels of LDL cholesterol can cause buildup to form up in the blood vessels, it is often referred to as “bad” cholesterol. The blood vessels in your body may become more constricted as a result, raising your risk of heart disease and stroke.
High-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol:
Due to its role in clearing LDL from your arteries, this cholesterol is frequently referred to as “good” cholesterol. You may be more resistant to heart disease and stroke if you have high levels of HDL cholesterol.
What Is Normal Cholesterol?
These levels are thought to be important for the majority of people, but depending on your particular risk factors for heart disease and stroke, your doctor may suggest alternative goals. For instance, your doctor could advise you to aim for lower LDL cholesterol levels if you have a history of heart disease in your family or other risk factors like high blood pressure or diabetes.
A single test result might not be reliable because cholesterol levels can change from day to day. Your physician will likely want a second test to confirm the results if you have high cholesterol.
What is Your Cholesterol Level ? Let’s Check It
Normal Cholesterol Levels for Children
Normal Cholesterol Levels
|60 or older||M||<200||< 130||>40||< 150|
|60 or older||F||<200||<100||>50||<150|
**It is important to note that these are general guidelines, and your ideal cholesterol levels may vary depending on your individual risk factors for heart disease and stroke. If you have any concerns about your cholesterol levels, talk to your doctor.**
What Affects Cholesterol Levels?
Diet: Eating a diet that is high in saturated and trans fats can raise your cholesterol levels. Saturated fats are found in red meat, full-fat dairy products, and tropical oils. Trans fats are found in processed foods, such as fried foods and baked goods.
Family history: If you have a family history of high cholesterol or heart disease, you are more likely to have high cholesterol yourself.
Physical activity: Being inactive can raise your cholesterol levels.
Age: Cholesterol levels tend to rise with age.
Sex: Men tend to have higher cholesterol levels than women until menopause. After menopause, women tend to have higher cholesterol levels than men.
Medical conditions: Certain medical conditions, such as diabetes and hypothyroidism, can increase your cholesterol levels.
Medications: Some medications, such as steroids and birth control pills, can raise your cholesterol levels.
Other Factors That May Affect Cholesterol Levels
Stress: Stress can raise cholesterol levels.
Alcohol: Drinking too much alcohol can raise cholesterol levels.
Smoking: Smoking can raise LDL cholesterol levels and lower HDL cholesterol levels.
Kidney disease: Kidney disease can raise cholesterol levels.
Liver disease: Liver disease can raise cholesterol levels.
HIV/AIDS: HIV/AIDS can raise cholesterol levels