September is Cholesterol Awareness Month. What's Your Number?
Sep 04, 2012 06:40PM ● Published by Anonymous
“Every other American male and every third American female over age 40 will develop coronary heart disease,” said Mark Eskandari, MD, a member of the Society for Vascular Surgery®. For this reason, HHS has designated September Cholesterol Awareness Month.
“It’s possible to limit cholesterol build-up in your blood vessels,” said Dr. Eskandari. “Lowering your risk factors can help prevent coronary heart disease.”
The vascular surgeon suggests the following actions:
- • Exercise (30 minutes daily)
- • Reduce intake of saturated fats and cholesterol-containing foods
- • Quit smoking
- • Reduce excess weight (waist size more than 40 inches for men;more than 35 inches for women)
The National Cholesterol Education Program (NCEP) within the National Institute of Health’s National Heart Lung and Blood Institute recommends a cholesterol check every five years for adults more than 20 years of age. Desirable cholesterol levels are:
- • Total cholesterol: Less than 200 mg/dL
- • Low Density Lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol ("bad" cholesterol): Less than 100 mg/dL
- • High Density Lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol ("good" cholesterol): 40 mg/dL or higher
- • Triglycerides: Less than 150 mg/dL
“Through lifestyle changes, most Americans can attain these cholesterol levels,” said Dr. Eskandari. “If necessary, cholesterol-lowering medications can help.”
Cholesterol information appears on the Society for Vascular Surgery website.