2 Heart Disease



Lowering Cholesterol

The main goal of lowering your cholesterol levels is to lower your LDL level enough to reduce your risk of developing heart disease or having a heart attack. 

There are two main ways to achieve lowering your cholesterol:

Also, to reduce your risk for heart disease or keep it low, it is very important to control any other risk factors you may have such as high blood pressure and smoking.

Lowering Cholesterol With Lifestyle Changes

  • Diet.  Follow an eating plan that is low in cholesterol and low in saturated fat.  Click here for a diet for lowering cholesterol.   
  • Weight Management. Losing weight if you are overweight can help lower LDL and is especially important for those with a cluster of risk factors that includes high triglyceride and/or low HDL levels and being overweight with a large waist measurement (more than 40 inches for men and more than 35 inches for women).
  • Physical Activity. Regular physical activity (30 minutes on most, if not all, days) is recommended for everyone. It can help raise HDL and lower LDL and is especially important for those with high triglyceride and/or low HDL levels who are overweight with a large waist measurement.

Drug Treatment

Even if you begin drug treatment for lowering your cholesterol, you will need to continue to lower your cholesterol with lifestyle changes. This will keep the dose of medicine as low as possible, and lower your risk in other ways as well.

There are several types of drugs available for cholesterol lowering including statins, bile acid sequestrants, nicotinic acid, and fibric acids. Your doctor can help decide which type of drug is best for you. The statin drugs are very effective in lowering LDL levels and are safe for most people.

Bile acid sequestrants also lower LDL and can be used alone or in combination with statin drugs.

Nicotinic acid lowers LDL and triglycerides and raises HDL.

Fibric acids lower LDL somewhat but are used mainly to treat high triglyceride and low HDL levels.

Once your LDL goal has been reached, your doctor may prescribe treatment for high triglycerides and/or a low HDL level, if present. The treatment includes losing weight if needed, increasing physical activity, quitting smoking, and possibly taking a drug.

Click here for a diet for lowering cholesterol.

Cholesterol - What your Cholesterol numbers mean - Lowering your Cholesterol - Diet for Lowering Cholesterol - Low Cholesterol Recipes






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lowering cholesterol