Cholesterol is a waxy substance which is found in fats (lipids) in the blood. While body needs some amount of cholesterol to continue for building the healthy cells, but having high cholesterol may increase the risk of the heart disease. Many of the factors may increase the chances of having the heart problems or even a stroke, if a patient was suffering with high cholesterol. High cholesterol wont cause any symptoms. It is generally found during blood test, which will measures the cholesterol levels. Some of the people with rare lipid disorders will have symptoms like bumps in skin, hands, or even feet, which are caused by the deposits of extra cholesterol & other kinds of fats.
High cholesterol may be inherited, but it is usually the result of unhealthy lifestyle choices & thus it can be preventable & treatable. A healthy diet, regular exercise and sometimes taking medication will go a long way toward the reducing high amount of cholesterol. The 2 types of treatment are:
- Lifestyle changes especially diet & exercises
- By using cholesterol-lowering medicines
Eating healthy and balanced diet that is low in saturated fats may reduce the level of "bad cholesterol" (LDL). Try to avoid or even cut down of following foods, which were high in saturated fat. Doing routine physical activity may also lower LDL cholesterol & triglycerides & raise the HDL cholesterol level.
In addition to the lifestyle changes, doctor will prescribes medicines which will helps to lower the cholesterol level. The 5 major types of cholesterol-lowering medicines were nicotinic acid, statins, bile acid, sequestrants, fibrates & ezetimibe.
- Statins work well for lowering the LDL cholesterol. These medicines were safe for most of the people.
- Bile acid sequestrants will also help to lower the LDL cholesterol. These medicines generally are not prescribed as only medicine to lower the cholesterol. Sometimes they are prescribed along with statins.
- Nicotinic acid will lowers the LDL cholesterol & triglycerides & also raises the HDL cholesterol. But this medication needs to be used only with doctors supervision.
- Fibrates will also lower triglycerides & they will also raises HDL cholesterol, when they were used with statins, fibrates will also increases the risk of muscle problems.
- Ezetimibe will lowers the LDL cholesterol, this medicine will works by blocking intestine from absorbing the cholesterol.
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