Knowing the normal cholesterol levels - High cholesterol levels can increase the risk of heart disease, stroke, and poor blood circulation. Knowing cholesterol levels in the blood is an effort to prevent this disease.
Cholesterol is a fat compound produced by various cells in the body, and about a quarter of the cholesterol produced in the body is produced by liver cells. Basically, the body needs cholesterol to stay healthy.
However, high cholesterol levels in the body can increase the risk of poor blood circulation, heart disease, and stroke. The purpose of checking cholesterol in the blood is to detect the risks of the disease.
Checking cholesterol levels should be done periodically to monitor overall health conditions. So, when should we start checking cholesterol levels?
If you smoke, have excess body weight, have high blood pressure, have diabetes and there are families who have a history of heart disease, you should start checking since the age of 20.
However, if you do not smoke and do not have these diseases, the examination can begin at the age of 35 years. If the result is normal, you can check it again every 5 years. But, if you have high cholesterol levels, you should check it more often. Moreover, if you have diabetes, heart disease, and kidney problems.
There are two types of cholesterol, namely good cholesterol, and bad cholesterol. Good cholesterol (HDL-High Density Lipoprotein) functions to prevent atheroma or narrowing of blood vessels due to fat. While bad cholesterol (LDL-Low Density Lipoprotein) is one of the main causes of atheroma formation. Besides good and bad cholesterol, there are other forms of fat in the blood called triglycerides.
Atheroma itself is a trigger for heart disease which is also known as atherosclerosis or hardening of the arteries. Atheroma is a fatty plaque that builds up in the artery walls of blood vessels. After months, even years, the plaque thickened and expanded. At that moment, blood vessels are blocked and make blood flow not smooth. This condition can cause heart attacks, strokes, or other serious problems.
The cholesterol level of each person varies depending on what they consume. In addition, everyone can have different cholesterol levels even if he or she consumed the same food. In some people, high cholesterol can only be caused by heredity.
Read too: High Cholesterol Foods
Knowing the Normal Cholesterol Levels
Before checking cholesterol levels, you must fast for 9-12 hours. Measurement of cholesterol levels is done by knowing how many milligrams (mg) of cholesterol are found in each deciliter (dL) of blood.
Here are the normal levels for the types of cholesterol that are in the blood.
The higher the level of good cholesterol or HDL, the better it will be for health. This is because HDL protects against heart disease. A minimum HDL level of 60 mg / dL or more can help reduce the risk of heart disease. In contrast, HDL levels of less than 40 mg / dL actually increase the risk of heart disease.
Because of its evil nature, LDL or bad cholesterol should be at a low level or can be tolerated by the body, which is less than 100 mg / dL. The amount of LDL 100-129 mg / dL can be said to be a tolerance threshold. If it exceeds this amount, bad cholesterol can cause various health problems such as atheroma, heart disease, and stroke.
LDL 130-159 mg / dL can be said to enter a high threshold, and if the amount reaches 160-189 mg / dL it has entered a high level. While the amount of LDL is 190 mg / dL and the rest, is at a very high level.
This fat can also increase the risk of heart disease. So, the lower the triglyceride level, the better it will be for health. The amount of triglycerides 150-199 mg / dL can be said to be at a high threshold, and the amount of 200 mg / dL or more includes high triglyceride levels. Some people need treatment if they have triglyceride levels at both levels.
Total cholesterol is a combination of the amount of bad cholesterol, good cholesterol, and triglycerides in every deciliter in the blood. Usually, just looking at your total cholesterol and HDL levels can illustrate the general condition of your cholesterol levels. However, if total cholesterol is 200 mg / dL or more, or HDL is less than 40 mg / dL, you need to do a complete cholesterol check that includes LDL and triglycerides.
Cholesterol levels less than 200 mg / dL can still be tolerated. The amount of cholesterol levels 200-239 mg / dL has entered the high threshold. If the amount reaches 240 mg / dL or more including high cholesterol levels.
Food required to maintain normal cholesterol levels
To maintain normal cholesterol levels, avoid foods that contain trans fat. We can find this fat in fried foods, margarine, and snacks such as biscuits.
Here are some types of foods that you can consume to reduce cholesterol levels in the blood.
- Various types of fish such as salmon, sardines, mackerel, and tuna fish, are rich in omega 3 which is good for the heart.
- Oatmeal, rich in soluble fiber which can reduce the level of bad cholesterol. In a day, you need at least 5-10 grams of soluble fiber. One-half cup of cooked oatmeal contains about 6 grams of fiber. You can add fruit over oatmeal porridge to enrich the flavor.
- Various types of nuts such as hazelnuts, almonds, pistachios, and others can reduce the risk of heart disease. You can replace fatty foods like cheese and meat with nuts.
- Olive oil contains antioxidants that can reduce the level of bad cholesterol. When cooking, use two tablespoons of olive oil a day for salads or other ingredients.
Maintaining nutritious food intake to limit the level of bad cholesterol is good, but the steps to living a healthy lifestyle are equally important. Start stopping bad old habits, such as smoking and consuming alcohol. Instead, start getting used to exercising regularly.
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