“A HEALTHY outside starts from the inside.”


What is cholesterol? Cholesterol is a waxy, fat-like substance that’s found in all the cells in your body.  Your liver makes cholesterol, and it is also in some foods, such as meat and dairy products.  Your body needs some cholesterol to work properly, but having too much cholesterol in your blood raises your risk of coronary artery disease.  What are the kinds of cholesterol?


LDL (low density-lipoprotein) cholesterol is also called “bad” cholesterol.  LDL can build up on the walls of your arteries and increase your chances of getting heart disease.

Your LDL cholesterol number is:

  • Optimal if it is less than 100.
  • Near optimal/above optimal if it is 100-129.
  • Borderline high if it is 130-159.
  • High if it is 160-189.
  • Very high if it is 190 or above.


HDL (high-density lipoprotein) cholesterol is also called “good” cholesterol.  HDL protects against heart disease by taking the bad cholesterol out of your blood and keeping it from building up in your arteries.

Your HDL cholesterol number is:

  • Low (and considered a risk factor) if it is less than 40.
  • Good (and able to help lower your risk of heart disease) if it is 60 or more.


Cholesterol plays a distinct role in cardiovascular disease; which involves coronary heart disease, stroke, as well as peripheral vascular disease.  High cholesterol has also been found to have a link to diabetes and high blood pressure.  To prevent the onset of these conditions, it is important to fully understand what cholesterol is and how it impacts your body as well as how you can effectively monitor your levels to identify the onset of an issue.

Diet improvements, like eating more heart-healthy foods and increased exercise can help to lower LDL, but sometimes you need to do more. That’s why it’s important to talk to your doctor about getting labs done to know where you LDL levels are, about lifestyle changes and cholesterol-lowering medicines to lower LDL and reduce risk of a devastating heart attack or stroke.  Here at Island Doctors the goal is to help keep your health in check and live a healthy, happy life.

Call 877-434-4676 today to book an appointment to speak with your doctor about the importance of understanding the basics of cholesterol and implementing effective strategies to manage your levels.