September marks the observance of National Cholesterol Awareness Month. Being heart-healthy, often times mean keeping your cholesterol low. Although cholesterol is a substance that your body needs, it’s true that too much of any one thing, can be bad for you. Detecting and treating cholesterol early is imperative. Taking action before it’s too late can help to prevent long-term risks such as heart disease and stroke. Here are a few things you should keep in mind:

Detecting High Cholesterol –

Unlike many conditions, high cholesterol typically has no symptoms. The only sure way to know is by taking a blood test. This makes it extremely important to seek results, especially as you get older. When determining if you’re at risk of high cholesterol, consulting a doctor is the first step. They will be able to test your LDL and HDL levels and detect the condition of your heart.

What Are The Risks? –

Cholesterol is carried through your blood, attached to proteins. The presence of too much cholesterol tends to cause plaque build-up in the arteries.

The risks of cholesterol and heart disease are higher in those ages 45 and up, smokers and those with high blood pressure, diabetes and/or a family history of early heart disease. If you or your loved are associated with two or more of these risk factors, reducing cholesterol levels is vital.

Prevention and Treatment –

There are a number of lifestyle changes that can be made to better treat high cholesterol. It starts with maintaining a heart-healthy diet and participating in regular exercise. An active lifestyle will help to support overall cardiovascular health and good nutrition will help to prevent consumption of trans fats, that negatively impact heart health. If you smoke, it is in your best interest to find a program that can help you quit. In addition to lifestyle changes, a doctor may prescribe you with medications that lower cholesterol. Your physician can help you figure out which medications are best for your lifestyle and budget.

Changing your lifestyle may seem difficult, but it all starts with taking your first step to healthier living. If you or your loved one has any questions or comments, feel free to contact us!


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