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Why You Need to Know About Triglycerides

They may be the most common type of fat in your body, but did you know high levels of triglycerides put you at risk for heart disease? About one third of Americans have high triglycerides levels, but are unaware of the negative consequences. Triglycerides, along with much better known LDL cholesterol and HDL (the good kind) cholesterol, are a fatty particle found in the blood. Calories that aren't immediately used by the body, no matter if the calories originate as carbs, protein or fat, are converted into triglycerides, where they sit as an energy reserve.

Research by the Centers for Disease Control as well as Danish research have found that high triglycerides are linked to early death and heart disease. But you can fight back rather easily with a healthy lifestyle, which seems to be more effective than statin drugs at lowering this free floating blood fat. Exercising, eating a healthy diet, losing weight, and swapping out unhealthy fats like saturated fats (found in cheese and ground beef for instance) for healthy monounsaturated fats (found in avocados and almonds) all help to lower triglyceride levels. It helps to avoid alcohol and fatty meals too and increase your intake of omega-3 fatty acids. You can have your levels checked with a blood test performed by your doctor. I know I have never had mine checked, but I am going to take my fish oil supplement right now.


Join The Conversation
sandy82 sandy82 8 years
Lipid profile checks for this. My cholesterol and LDL are high and my HDL is normal. It's unfortunately due to genetics.
aimeeb aimeeb 8 years
GlowingMoon GlowingMoon 8 years
My triglycerides are normal, and I didn't even fast. :) Incidentally, my entire panel read normal (some even ideal), and I didn't fast. My doctor was impressed with that.
Spectra Spectra 8 years
I'm getting my cholesterol/triglycerides read this next Tuesday and I hope mine are normal. Last time I had them checked, they were fine but I get paranoid because my grandpa died from heart disease and my dad has high cholesterol despite having a pretty healthy lifestyle. I take my fish oil every day, so maybe that'll swing things in my favor.
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