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Triglycerides (cont.)

Medication to Lower Triglyceride Levels

The following classes of medications have effects on triglyceride levels:

  • HMG CoA reductase inhibitor medications (statins) are most effective in lowering LDL cholesterol, mildly effective in increasing HDL cholesterol, and mildly effective in lowering triglycerides. Examples include pravastatin (Pravachol), lovastatin (Mevacor), atorvastatin (Lipitor), rosuvastatin (Crestor), and simvastatin (Zocor).
  • Fibric acid derivative medications such as gemfibrozil (Lopid) and fenofibrate (Tricor) are most effective in lowering triglycerides, effective in increasing HDL, and minimally effective in lowering LDL levels.
  • Nicotinic acid (Niacin), known by the names Niacin, Niaspan, or Slo-Niacin, is most effective in increasing HDL, effective in lowering triglycerides, and mildly to moderately effective in lowering LDL levels.

Omega-3 Fatty Acids to Lower Triglyceride Levels

Omega-3 fatty acids have also been shown to reduce triglyceride levels. The American Heart Association recommends eating fish (particularly fatty fish) at least two times (two servings) a week. If you have high triglyceride levels or other risk factors for cardiovascular disease, your health care professional may advise you to take omega-3 fatty acids in supplement (fish oil) form.

Medically reviewed by Joseph Palermo, DO; American Osteopathic Board Certified Internal Medicine


Fauci, Anthony S., et al. Harrison's Principles of Internal Medicine. 17th ed. United States: McGraw-Hill Professional, 2011.

NIH. Triglycerides.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 4/6/2016

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