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.
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