Understanding Your Cholesterol Level (cont.)
IN THIS ARTICLE
Cholesterol Charts (What the Numbers Mean)
Total cholesterol is the sum of all the cholesterol in your blood. Your risk for heart attack and stroke increases with higher cholesterol levels. Other risk factors include smoking, high blood pressure, diabetes, and family history of heart disease or stroke.
HDL (high density lipoprotein) is considered the "good" cholesterol because it may help decrease the cholesterol buildup in the walls of arteries that causes narrowing of their openings.
LDL (low density lipoprotein) is considered "bad" cholesterol. The risk of heart disease goes up if you have a high level of LDL cholesterol in your blood because of increased potential for narrowing of blood vessels.
Triglycerides are another type of fat in the bloodstream. High levels are a risk factor for narrowing arteries in the body.
Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 6/19/2014
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High-density lipoprotein (HDL) is positively associated with a decreased risk of coronary heart disease (CHD).