Lipid disorders

Lipid Disorders are when there are too many fatty substances in the blood such as cholesterol and triglycerides, increasing the risk for heart disease and atherosclerosis.

What is Lipid Disorders?

Lipid Disorders are when there are too many fatty substances in the blood such as cholesterol and triglycerides, increasing the risk for heart disease and atherosclerosis.

Because of its reputation as a risk factor for heart disease, people tend to think of cholesterol only in negative terms. But cholesterol is an important component of cell membranes and is vital to the structure and function of all of your body’s cells. Cholesterol also is a building block in the formation of certain types of hormones.

Still, 37 million American adults have high blood cholesterol levels, and 105 million have cholesterol levels that are higher than desirable (hypercholesterolemia). If you’re one of these people with this largely preventable condition, you may be on your way to heart disease.

When the levels of cholesterol and triglycerides, a blood fat, in your bloodstream become too high, your likelihood of developing cholesterol-containing fatty deposits (plaques) in your blood vessels increases. Over time, plaques cause your arteries to narrow, which impedes blood flow and creates a condition called atherosclerosis. Narrowing the arteries that supply your heart with blood (coronary artery disease) can prevent your heart from getting as much oxygen-rich blood as it needs. This means an increased risk of a heart attack. Likewise, decreased blood flow to your brain can cause a stroke. Less blood flowing to your lower limbs may result in exercise-related pain or even gangrene.

The good news is that with the help of lifestyle changes and possibly medications, you may be able to lower your high blood cholesterol. It’s estimated that if there were a 10 percent reduction in cholesterol levels throughout the U.S. population, the rate of heart disease would drop by 30 percent.

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