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Triglycerides
(Triglyceride Test)

Triglycerides Overview

Triglycerides are one of the types of fats (lipids) transported in the bloodstream. Most of the body's fat is also stored in the tissues as triglycerides. Triglyceride blood levels are commonly measured along with other lipid levels, such as cholesterol.

Triglycerides are also present in foods like vegetable oils and animal fats. The triglycerides in our blood are a mixture of triglycerides obtained from dietary sources and triglycerides produced by the body as sources of energy.

Elevated triglyceride levels can be caused by a variety of disease processes. Elevated triglyceride levels are considered to be a risk factor for developing hardening of the arteries (atherosclerosis) because many of the triglyceride-containing lipoproteins that transport fat in the bloodstream also transport cholesterol, a known contributor to atherosclerosis. Often, elevated triglyceride levels are present along with elevated cholesterol levels. This condition is referred to as a mixed hyperlipidemia.

Triglyceride Test

Triglyceride levels in the blood are measured by a blood test. Fasting for 8 to 12 hours before the test is required, since recent eating and digestion can often cause the results to be temporarily elevated.

Triglycerides can be measured as part of a lipoprotein panel or lipid panel in which cholesterol, HDL (high-density lipoprotein) and LDL (low-density lipoprotein) are also measured.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 4/6/2016

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Patient Comments & Reviews

The eMedicineHealth doctors ask about Triglycerides:

Triglycerides - Treatment

What treatment did you receive for elevated triglycerides?

Triglycerides - Lifestyle Changes

What lifestyle changes, for example, diet, weight loss, exercise) have been effective in lowering your triglyceride levels?

Triglycerides - Medication

What medication are you taken, or have you taken to lower your triglyceride levels, and have they been effective?

Triglycerides - Elevated

What were your triglyceride levels, and what action did you take to lower the levels. Please share your experience.

Cholesterol and Triglycerides: Eating Fish and Fish Oil

Eating fish, at least 2 servings each week, is part of a heart-healthy diet. But fish and fish oil supplements do not lower cholesterol.

Some people take fish oil supplements to help lower triglycerides. Fish oil supplements can lower triglycerides.

Fish

Eating fish may help lower your risk of heart disease. As part of a heart-healthy diet, eat at least 2 servings of fish each week. Oily fish, which contain omega-3 fatty acids, are best for your heart. These fish include salmon, mackerel, lake trout, herring, and sardines.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recommend that women who may become pregnant, pregnant women, nursing mothers, and young children should not eat shark, swordfish, king mackerel, or tilefish, because these fish have higher mercury concentrations. But for middle-aged and older people, the protection that fish gives the heart outweighs the risks of eating these fish. Eating a variety of fish may reduce the amount of mercury you eat.

SOURCE: Healthwise



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