Is There Anything Else I Need To Know About Triglyceride Tests
Certain commonly used medicines can increase blood triglyceride levels, so ask your provider if any medicines you take could affect your test results.
Certain medical conditions can also increase blood triglycerides, including:
If one of these conditions could be increasing your triglycerides, it’s important to treat the condition to help lower your blood triglycerides and your risk of heart disease and stroke.
What Is A Healthy Cholesterol Level By Age
Total cholesterol levels less than 200 milligrams per deciliter are considered desirable for adults. A reading between 200 and 239 mg/dL is considered borderline high and a reading of 240 mg/dL and above is considered high. LDL cholesterol levels should be less than 100 mg/dL.
How Do Triglycerides Get Into The Blood
When we eat foods containing triglycerides, such as meat, dairy products, cooking oils and fats, they are absorbed by our intestines and packaged into parcels of fats and protein called chylomicrons . These carry the triglycerides in the blood stream to our tissues to be used for energy straight away, or stored for later.
The body also makes its own supply of triglycerides in the liver. This form is carried in a different type of lipoprotein known as VLDL cholesterol.
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What Is The Treatment For High Levels Of Triglycerides
Stop drinking alcohol as it might increase the triglyceride. Consumption of small quantities of alcohol can increase the level of triglycerides by 50%.
Fasting one meal in a week.
Do regular exercise.
Eat healthy foods.
Modifying lifestyle is the best option of attaining a healthy formula of low bad cholesterol, high good cholesterol, and low triglyceride.
Are You Having Too Low Triglycerides?
Having too low levels of cholesterol can be both advantageous and harmful. The causes for very low triglycerides level is consuming too low-fat products, certain fat lowering drugs, and hyperthyroidism.
Positive Side: Increases the lifespan of the individual and it also increases the cognitive skills and function. People who have low triglycerides are known to have no dementia even in their elderly age.
Negative Side: Malnutrition, malabsorption, and severe weight loss.
Causes Of High Triglycerides
In many cases, habitual overeating causes high triglycerides. Occasionally, the trigger is an underlying condition such as:
- Excessive alcohol consumption
- Some types of liver disease
- Some types of kidney disease
- Some genetic disorders, including the inherited disease familial hypertriglyceridemia and familial combined hyperlipidemia .
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Correlations Between Triglyceride Levels And Other Values
In women, significant negative correlations were found between triglyceride levels and left atrial dimensions, right ventricular dimensions, pulmonary artery pressures, and grades of mitral regurgitation and tricuspid regurgitation .
TABLE IV. Related Values with Triglycerides in Patients with Congestive Heart Failure
Why The Test Is Performed
Triglycerides are usually measured together with other blood fats. Often it is done to help determine your risk of developing heart disease. A high triglyceride level may lead to atherosclerosis, which increases your risk for heart attack and stroke.
A very high triglyceride level may also cause swelling of your pancreas .
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Too Much Isn’t Heart Healthy
Triglyceride levels are measures in milligrams per deciliter, or mg/dL. “Triglyceride levels below 150 mg/dL are considered normal,” explains Gregg Fonarow, MD, director of the Ahmanson-UCLA Cardiomyopathy Center and co-director of the UCLA Preventative Cardiology Program.
But Mayo Clinic notes that, when levels rise to between 150 and 199, that’s considered “borderline high.” If they rise to the 200 to 499 level, that’s deemed to be “high,” whereas anything 500 and up is deemed “very high.” And both Mayo Clinic and Cleveland Clinic caution that high triglyceride levels can ultimately raise your risk for heart disease.
These high levels can lead to a hardening or thickening of arterial walls. That boosts the risk for strokes and heart attacks. And high triglyceride levels can be a sign that other health issues may be present, such as Type 2 diabetes, thyroid problems or metabolic syndrome.
It’s also the case that some drugs â including diuretics, estrogen, progestin, steroids, beta blockers and some HIV meds â may have the side effect of driving up triglyceride levels.
However, there are a wide range of interventions that can help bring triglyceride levels back down to healthy levels, according to Mayo Clinic. Those include lifestyle changes that prompt weight loss, such as exercising more and consuming fewer refined carbs, sugar and alcohol, as well as medications, like statins and niacin .
What Do Low Triglyceride Levels Indicate And Can They Be Too Low
In general, having low triglyceride levels is not considered a problem. If your triglyceride levels are less than 150mg/dL, you have a lower risk of cardiovascular diseases, such as heart attack or stroke.
However, if your triglyceride levels are extremely low and less than 40mg/dL, then you may have a medical condition or disease, such as liver problems or inflammation. Your risk of dying from heart failure is also higher if triglycerides are too low.
Other causes of very low triglyceride levels include:
- Very low-fat diets
- Certain rare genetic conditions that affect how your body converts fat to energy
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Ldl And Hdl: What Are Triglycerides
Triglycerides are chemical compounds digested by the body to provide it with the energy for metabolism. Triglycerides are the most common form of fat in the body. They are the main ingredient in vegetable oils and animal fats.
The triglyceride molecule is a form of the chemical glycerol that contains three fatty acids. To be absorbed, these parts are broken apart in the small intestine, and afterwards are reassembled with cholesterol to form chylomicrons. This is the source of energy for cells in the body. Fat cells and liver cells are used as storage sites and release chylomicrons when the body needs the energy.
Elevated triglyceride levels are a risk factor for atherosclerosis, the narrowing of arteries with the buildup of fatty plaques that may lead to heart attack, stroke, and peripheral artery disease. Markedly elevated triglyceride levels may also cause fatty liver disease and pancreatitis.
Certain diseases and conditions may cause elevated triglyceride blood levels, for example:
Do Triglycerides Clog Arteries
Triglycerides have taken a back seat to cholesterol because information linking triglyceride blood levels to artery hardening, heart attack and stroke was scanty. Now evidence implicates triglycerides as bearing some responsibility for clogging arteries and having a hand in heart attacks and strokes.
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Cutoff Values Of Sodium For Predicting Cardiovascular Death In Men
As determined by ROC curve analysis , the cutoff value of sodium that predicted cardiovascular death was < 128.5 mEq/L in men, with 92% sensitivity and 97% specificity. There were 21 men with sodium levels of < 128.5 mEq/L, 12 of whom died during the follow-up period. There were 388 men with sodium levels of > 128.5 mEq/L, 131 of whom died due to cardiovascular reasons during the follow-up period .
Finding Out Your Triglycerides Levels
Triglycerides are measured with a simple blood test. Triglyceride levels should be measured when you have a cholesterol test as they can also contribute to your risk of developing heart disease, and other disease of the heart and blood vessels. The triglyceride test measures the triglycerides carried in chylomicrons and VLDL cholesterol. National guidelines in the UK no longer recommend a fasting blood test .
What should your triglyceride levels be?
HEART UK experts state that we should aim for a non-fasting triglyceride level below 2.3mmol/L.
If your doctor has asked you to fast for a test then your triglyceride level should be below 1.7mmol/L. This “fasting test” number is lower because only the triglycerides made by the liver and carried in the VLDL cholesterol will be measured not the triglycerides you get from food. As you have not eaten, there will be no chylomicrons present in your blood.
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What Happens During A Triglycerides Test
During the test, a health care professional will take a blood sample from a vein in your arm, using a small needle. After the needle is inserted, a small amount of blood will be collected into a test tube or vial. You may feel a little sting when the needle goes in or out. This usually takes less than five minutes.
Can Triglycerides Be Too Low Mine Are At 43 Total Cholesterol 241 Ldl 128 Vldl 9 Hdl 104
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How To Maintain Optimal Triglyceride Levels
- Exercise for 30-60 minutes 5x/week.
- Lose excess weight by consuming fewer calories.
- Avoid refined carbohydrates and limit added sugars to < 25g/day.
- Limit alcohol consumption to < 1-2 drinks/day.
- Choose healthy fats like those found in nuts, seeds, olive oil, avocados, and salmon.
- Avoid trans fats and limit saturated fat to < 10% of total calories.
What Are Triglycerides
Lipids, also referred to as fats, are one of the three macronutrients that are an essential part of the diet. There are various types of lipids, including steroids, phospholipids, and triglycerides. Triglycerides are a type of lipid that the body can use for both immediate and stored energy.
When you eat a meal, your body uses the nutrients from that meal as energy or fuel. However, if you eat a meal with too much energy , this excess energy gets converted into triglycerides. These triglycerides are stored in fat cells for use at a later time.
The most common concern about triglycerides is high triglyceride levels. High levels of triglycerides in the blood may contribute to atherosclerosis, the clogging and hardening of the arteries. Because of this, high triglyceride levels may increase your risk of heart disease, heart attack, or stroke.
Low triglyceride levels may be a health concern as well. Lets look at how low triglycerides may affect your health and how to prevent and treat related problems.
The most common blood test used to check your triglyceride levels is called a lipid panel. A standard lipid panel will test for the following:
- total cholesterol
- cholesterol/HDL ratio
- non-HDL cholesterol
Your doctor will use a lipid panel to determine if your triglyceride levels are within normal range.
There is no current range for low triglyceride levels. However, if your triglyceride levels are very low, this may indicate an underlying condition or disease.
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How Low Is Too Low
Cholesterol is a fat-like substance in your blood. In the right amounts, it helps keep you healthy. You have two types of it in your bloodstream.
- Low-density lipoprotein is âbadâ cholesterol that can build up in the walls of your arteries over time. Most of the cholesterol in your body is made up of this type.
- High-density lipoprotein is âgoodâ cholesterol that helps remove the âbadâ kind from your bloodstream.
- Your ideal total cholesterol level should be around 150. Your LDL levels should be around 100 mg/dL. This range helps put you at a low risk of heart disease.
- Less than 120 mg/dL total cholesterol or an LDL level less than 50 mg/dL is very low.
Should You Worry About High Triglycerides
These blood fats can be one of the signs of metabolic syndrome, which increases the risk for having a heart attack or stroke.
Until recently, triglycerides tended to get less attention when looking at cardiovascular risk compared to LDL and HDL cholesterol levels. There’s no question that extremely high levels spell trouble and can lead to acute pancreatitis. But what about treating lower levels of triglycerides? Recent evidence suggests you should work to reduce triglyceride levels of they are higher than normal, especially if you have heart disease or have other risk factors such as diabetes, high blood pressure or smoking.
*All values in milligrams per deciliter
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How Are Triglycerides Measured
Your doctor may give you a common test called a lipid panel. It checks for different types of cholesterol, including the levels of the “good” kind and the “bad” kind. The American Heart Association recommends that everyone 21 and older get a lipid panel at least every 5 years.
The levels are checked after an overnight fast. Fat from a recent meal can muddy the picture.
These tests are important because you rarely have any symptoms when your triglycerides are high, unlike with many other conditions.
What You Can Do
Many of the steps you should take to lower triglycerides are the same ones you should take to protect your heart and health overall.
If you’re overweight, shed a few pounds. Get regular aerobic exercise . Limit the saturated fats in meat and dairy products. Watch your alcohol intake, even moderate drinking ramps up triglyceride levels. And diet? High-carb/low-fat eating will increase your triglycerides and lower your HDL.
If you’re taking a statin to lower your LDL, one side benefit may be reduced triglyceride levels. Depending on the dose, statins can lower triglycerides by 20%40%.
The omega-3 fats in fish and capsules are another triglyceride-lowering option. For a very high triglyceride level, your doctor can prescribe a high-dose omega-3 medication.
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Atherosclerosis And Cardiovascular Disease
Despite being called good cholesterol, research suggests that very high levels of HDL may increase your risk of mortality.
In a 2017 Danish study , researchers analyzed the rate of mortality in groups of 52,268 European men and 64,240 women over an average of 6.4 years.
The researchers found the lowest mortality rates at HDL levels of 73 mg/dL in men and 93 mg/dL in women. Mortality rates increased significantly with HDL levels above 97 mg/dL in men and 135 mg/dL in women.
How To Reduce Your Triglycerides Level
Exercise regularly. Reduce your body weight. Whenever you eat more calories than you need, your body turns those calories into triglycerides and stores them in fat cells. It is wise to reduce these additional fats.
It is good to follow a low carbohydrate diet.
Eat more fiber as it makes your bowel movements normal and lowers your risk of cholesterol.
Avoid trans fats.
Follow a Mediterranean diet as it does a fair work in reducing triglycerides.
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Medications May Be Needed For High Triglyceride Levels
Sometimes, healthy eating and regular exercise cant lower high triglyceride levels. This may be the case, for example, if you have familial hypertriglyceridemia or if you already have heart disease. Your doctor may prescribe medication such as fibrates or nicotinic acids. Drugs to help lower high blood cholesterol may also be prescribed, if necessary.Suggestions for managing high triglyceride levels with medication include:
- Always take prescription medications exactly as instructed.
- See your doctor if you are having side effects from the medication. Known medication side effects may include indigestion, diarrhoea, fever or muscle problems.
- Dont assume that medications will somehow overcome the hazards of an unhealthy lifestyle. A healthy diet, regular exercise and maintaining an appropriate weight for your height are the most important management strategies for high triglycerides.
What Do Low Triglyceride Levels In The Blood Mean
Triglyceride values are usually given in mg/dl but sometimes you can see those values in mmol/l following the International System of Units . In case your values are in mmol/l you can convert them using this tool:
- Mild hypotriglyceridemia :
Triglyceride levels are a bit low but not a matter for concern. It can be the consequence of a low fat diet, for example a vegetarian diet or excessive weight loss.
You should keep an eye in your diet and it is probable that in the next blood test the values return to normal range.
- Moderate hypotriglyceridemia :
Triglyceride levels are very low and it is necessary to study the causes. The main causes are:
- An unbalanced diet
- Nutritional problems
It is also advisable to look for a possible hyperthyroidism because it is can be a possibility.
You should visit your doctor if you feel fatigue or muscular weakness. He will monitor you periodically.
Triglyceride levels in the blood are excessively low and it may be a sign of a health problem.
You should visit your doctor as soon as possible because such a low value may damage your kidneys or heart.
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How Can I Lower My Triglycerides Quickly
Dietary and lifestyle changes may help you lower your triglycerides within a few months. The first step, though, involves finding out why your triglycerides are high. Hypertriglyceridemia has many causes. These include:
- Dietary factors.
- Medical conditions.
- Some medications.
If you just learned your triglycerides are high, the first thing you should do is talk with your healthcare provider. Your provider will ask you some questions and review your medical history to see what might be causing the spike in your triglyceride level.
Your provider will then help you come up with a plan for getting your triglycerides back to a healthy level. This plan may involve medication to lower your triglycerides, especially if your numbers are very high. Or, you may need treatment for an underlying condition.
Your provider will also help you with dietary and lifestyle changes. Its always best to follow the individual plan your provider gives you. But here are some general guidelines that research shows can help you lower your triglycerides.
Dietary changes to help lower your triglycerides
There are four main dietary culprits that raise your triglycerides:
Product labels or packaging will also tell you if an item is fat-free. Its important to reduce your fat intake. But be aware that desserts labeled fat-free usually contain more sugar than full-fat versions and just as many calories. Limit these desserts or find healthier options like fresh fruit or sugar-free popsicles.