High Cholesterol

Internal Medicine, Physical Therapy, Pediatrics & Pulmonology located in San Antonio, TX

Having high cholesterol doubles your risk of heart disease, increasing the chances of stroke and heart attack. But, fortunately, SA Premier Internal Medicine can help you control your cholesterol at three locations in San Antonio, Texas. With some simple changes, you can reduce your cholesterol and increase your quality of life, so don’t wait to set up an appointment to check your cholesterol. Book a visit by phone or call the office nearest to you today.

What is high cholesterol?

High cholesterol means that you have too much of a waxy, fatty, substance called cholesterol in your body. Your liver creates all the cholesterol your body needs to function properly. 

But many foods also contain cholesterol, including animal products like dairy, eggs, and meat. This is why many people end up with more cholesterol than their body needs. The extra cholesterol accumulates to create plaque deposits inside artery walls. 

Most people who have high cholesterol do so because of an unhealthy diet, lack of physical activity, and extra weight. But genetics and certain medications can also cause high cholesterol. People with health conditions like diabetes, chronic kidney disease, and hypothyroidism are more likely to have high cholesterol. 

What are the effects of high cholesterol?

Plaque deposits can limit the blood flow to your brain, heart, and other parts of your body. This can lead to heart disease, and if a piece of plaque breaks off it can create a clot that leads to a heart attack or stroke. So, if unchecked, high cholesterol could eventually be deadly. 

Fortunately, cholesterol testing and management can help you to avoid devastating consequences.

What cholesterol number represents high cholesterol?

Your cholesterol blood test reveals several important numbers, including:

  • Low-density lipoprotein (LDL): bad cholesterol
  • High-density lipoprotein (HDL): good cholesterol (it helps to remove LDL from your body)
  • Non-HDL: includes LDL along with other harmful types of cholesterol
  • Triglycerides: a non-cholesterol fat that has harmful effects
  • Total cholesterol: a combination of LDL and HDL

Your cholesterol reading is a number that represents milligrams per deciliter (mg/dL). The exact cholesterol number representing high cholesterol can vary with both sex and age. In general, a healthy total cholesterol reading is less than 200 mg/dL, and you may receive a high-cholesterol diagnosis if your reading is above that number. 

What can I do about high cholesterol?

You can control high cholesterol. Your SA Premier Internal Medicine provider can help you make the changes that effectively lower your cholesterol, including: 

  • Heart-healthy diet that reduces unhealthy fats
  • Weight management: losing weight if you’re overweight
  • Regular exercise: 30 minutes a day
  • Stress management
  • Quitting smoking

Lifestyle changes are crucial for everyone with high cholesterol. But in some cases those changes may not be enough on their own, so your provider can prescribe medications to help. There are a variety of cholesterol-lowering medicines that work in combination with your heart-healthy lifestyle.

Ready to take control of your cholesterol? SA Premier Internal Medicine can help. Book your appointment online or call the office nearest to you now.