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Kathy asked...

Do I need to reduce my cholesterol?

Tags: heart

My recent total cholesterol level was 6.2 when checked by a nurse. However, my LDL was 3.4 and HDL 2.5. I understand that ratio is more important, which I make to be 2.48. I eat a healthy diet, exercise regularly, my BMI is 21.3 and blood pressure 126/70, do I need to reduce my cholesterol?

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The answer

Total cholesterol is made up of mainly of low density cholesterol LDL (bad cholesterol), HDL (good cholesterol) and triglycerides. The ratio of total cholesterol divided by HDL is the accepted measurement used to calculate cardiovascular risk and not total cholesterol on its own. Other lifestyle factors such as smoking and blood pressure are very important too so it is only when you add all these factors in that you get an accurate assessment. It sounds like you have a healthy lifestyle, your blood pressure is low and your Cholesterol/HDL ratio is in the low risk range so provided you don't smoke this should put you in the estimated safe category for cardiovascular risk.

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