Cholesterol is a waxy substance that your body uses to create new cells. However, if you have too much cholesterol, you run the risk of clogged arteries and cardiovascular health problems. The team of physicians at DFW MDcare in Plano, Texas, diagnoses high cholesterol and offers personalized treatment to restore your health. Call the practice today or make an appointment online for high cholesterol screening and treatment.
Cholesterol is a waxy substance made in your liver. It travels through your bloodstream so your body can use it to create new cells. The two main types of cholesterol are low-density lipoprotein (LDL) and high-density lipoprotein (HDL).
You might hear these referred to as the “bad” and “good” types of cholesterol, but it’s not that straightforward. Your body uses LDL cholesterol to make new cells, and the HDL cholesterol picks up any excess LDL cholesterol and takes it back to your liver.
High cholesterol develops when you have too much LDL cholesterol for your HDL cholesterol to clean up. As a result, the LDL cholesterol can build up in your arteries, causing them to harden and narrow in a condition called atherosclerosis.
Your liver makes all the cholesterol your body needs. While it’s possible to be genetically predisposed to high cholesterol, the disease is caused by unhealthy lifestyle choices in most cases.
Eating too much saturated animal fat and trans fats increase your risk of high cholesterol. Additionally, not getting enough exercise, smoking, and being overweight makes it more likely that you’ll develop the condition.
High cholesterol doesn’t cause any noticeable symptoms until it contributes to a cardiovascular health problem. The best way to monitor your cholesterol levels is to have complete blood panels during your annual physical or wellness exam.
The team at DFW MDcare creates customized treatment plans to lower your cholesterol and reduce your risk of complications. Your program could include:
In some cases, you can lower your cholesterol by making healthy lifestyle choices. Cutting high-fat foods out of your diet and focusing on eating fresh vegetables, fruits, whole grains, and lean protein can make a significant difference in your cholesterol levels.
Additionally, getting at least 30 minutes of moderate physical activity and giving up unhealthy habits like smoking and excessive alcohol consumption can reduce your cholesterol.
Your doctor can also prescribe medication if lifestyle adjustments aren’t enough to lower your cholesterol levels. Some of the common medicines for high cholesterol include:
If you have concerns about high cholesterol or are due for a physical exam and bloodwork, call DFW MDcare or make an appointment online today.