High Cholesterol

Partners In Family Health -  - Family Medicine

Partners In Family Health

Family Medicine located in York, PA

While more than 70 million adults in the United States have high cholesterol, only half get treatment for it. If you have concerns about cholesterol levels, the family medicine team at Partners in Family Health in York, Pennsylvania can help. The health care team tests your levels and provides a personalized, comprehensive treatment plan that fits your health needs. For testing and management of high cholesterol, call or book an appointment online.

High Cholesterol Q & A

What is cholesterol?

Cholesterol is a type of waxy fat your body needs to build cells. However, your body is able to manufacture all the cholesterol it needs for these purposes in your liver. Foods high in saturated and trans fat, such as bacon and baked goods, increase production of cholesterol, leading to high cholesterol levels in your blood.

As a sticky substance, the cholesterol in your blood attaches to the walls of your blood vessels, narrowing and hardening the passageway, making it more difficult for blood to get through and increasing your risk of a heart attack and stroke.

How do I know if my cholesterol is high?

You don’t experience symptoms when you have high cholesterol; the only way to detect it is to get tested. The team at Partners in Family Health offers cholesterol blood tests and recommends you not eat or drink anything for 12 hours before the blood draw.

For good health, the team recommends these cholesterol levels:

  • Total cholesterol: Less than 200 mg/dl
  • High-density lipoprotein (HDL): Greater than or equal to 60 mg/dl
  • Low-density lipoprotein (LDL): Less than 100 mg/dl

If your numbers fall out of these ranges, the healthcare professionals at Partners in Family Health work with you to improve your cholesterol and health.

What are LDL and HDL cholesterol?

LDL is referred to as bad cholesterol and HDL as good cholesterol. LDL travels in your bloodstream and sticks to the walls of your blood vessels, while HDL grabs cholesterol from your blood and brings it back to your liver for processing and removal from your body.

Do I need medication to lower cholesterol?

Medication might not be needed, at least initially. The board-certified family medicine practitioners at Partners in Family Health recommend starting with lifestyle changes to improve blood cholesterol. This includes:

  • Reducing your intake of foods high in saturated and trans fat
  • Eating more fiber
  • Adding omega-3 rich foods to your weekly rotation such as salmon, walnuts, or tuna
  • Losing weight
  • Exercising 30 to 60 minutes most days of the week

If these changes don’t improve your numbers, the team may recommend medications, such as:

  • Statins
  • Cholesterol absorption inhibitors
  • Injectable medication
  • Bile-acid binding resin

If you have concerns about your cholesterol level, call or schedule an appointment online today.