Get tested for High Cholesterol
High cholesterol occurs when there is too much cholesterol in the blood. Your body needs some cholesterol for healthy functioning, but too much is dangerous to your health. Untreated high cholesterol increases the risk for life-threatening medical conditions, including heart attack and stroke.
High cholesterol has no symptoms. The only way to find out if you have high cholesterol is to get tested with a simple blood test, which we perform at Sweetwater Medical Associates in Sugar Land, Texas.
There are different types of cholesterol: HDL (high-density lipoprotein), which is the good or “healthy” kind of cholesterol, and LDL (low-density lipoprotein), which is the bad or “lousy” kind. HDLs carry cholesterol away from your arteries and out of your body, while LDLs carry cholesterol away from the liver and into the bloodstream, where it can build up on artery walls and contribute to heart disease, heart attack, and stroke.
The goal of treatment for high cholesterol is to lower cholesterol levels into the healthy range to reduce the risk of heart disease. High cholesterol is treated with lifestyle changes, dietary changes, and medications. Your doctor will make specific recommendations for you based on the results of your lipid profile.
You should make lifestyle changes to reduce the risk factors that you can control. This includes not smoking, losing weight, maintaining a healthy weight, exercising regularly, and eating a nutritious diet of vegetables, fruits, whole grains, and high-fiber foods. Exercise and healthy foods can help raise HDL and lower LDL. When you shop for packaged foods, be sure to read the nutrition labels and choose foods that are low in saturated fat.
If you are at risk for high cholesterol or if it runs in your family, it’s important to see a primary care provider for regular check-ups. At Sweetwater Medical Associates, our providers can treat high cholesterol and help you decrease your risk of heart disease. To schedule an appointment, give us a call today at (281) 494-4900 or request one online.