What If My Application Is Declined
In the rare case that your application is declined, it is likely because you have other health complications related to your higher cholesterol. Again â talk to your agent. Theyâll be able to give you a personalized rundown of other insurance companies that may offer you coverage.
Because each insurer assesses your cholesterol a little bit differently, you may be able to pay lower prices at one insurer over another. Work with a licensed life insurance broker to shop around.
How To Prepare For Your Term Life Insurance Application
There are important measures you can take to prepare yourself before applying for term life insurance. Doing so will help your chances of getting approved for the best rating class possible. Use the following tips to put yourself in the best position to win:
- Visit your doctor as often as recommended.
- Know what medications affect cholesterol tests.
- Use a cholesterol check app to know your levels.
- Understand how high cholesterol makes you feel.
- Follow your doctors advice regarding medication and treatment.
- Make sure your medical records are regularly updated. This is crucial. The life insurance company will rate your application poorly if it is unable to determine your level of control.
- Get any complications under control. For example, if you also have high blood pressure, make sure it is being treated as well.
If you take any medications for high cholesterol, make sure you keep up with them and regularly check with your doctor that they are achieving the desired outcome.
Misconception: Diet And Physical Activity Dictate Your Cholesterol Level
Diet and physical activity do affect overall blood cholesterol levels, but so do other factors.
Being overweight or obese tends to increase bad cholesterol and lower good cholesterol . Getting older also causes LDL cholesterol to rise. For some, heredity may play a role.
So, a heart-healthy diet and regular physical activity are important to everyone for maintaining cardiovascular health.
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You Dont Need To Avoid Eggs And Seafood
Some foods are high in cholesterol but are fine to eat in moderation, as long as your overall diet is low in saturated fats. For example:
- Egg yolks a single egg yolk contains 200250 mg of cholesterol, which is almost the uppermost recommended daily intake . However, reducing egg intake is probably not important for healthy people with normal blood cholesterol levels.
- Seafood prawns and seafood contain some cholesterol, but they are low in saturated fat and also contain healthy omega-3 fatty acids. Seafood is a healthy food and should not be avoided just because it contains cholesterol. However, avoid fried and battered seafood.
Cholesterol Numbers And What They Mean
|Triglycerides||under 150 mg/dL|
A higher total-cholesterol-to-HDL ratio signifies a higher risk of heart disease to yourlife insurance underwriter. Even if you have a low total amount of cholesterol , if your total-cholesterol-to-HDL ratio is high, it can affect your life insurance rates.
But most people with high cholesterol still pay low rates for life insurance, especially if you can successfully lower your cholesterol levels with medication.
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Does Stress Cause High Cholesterol
While stress is not a primary cause of high cholesterol, it may still have an effect on cholesterol levels. A study published in May 2017 in the journal Medicine found that in people who experienced stress due to work or personal conflict, higher stress was a risk factor for high cholesterol. And when you are feeling stressed and pressed for time, you may be less likely to follow heart-healthy lifestyle measures, such as eating a nutritious diet and getting exercise. The 2017 study found that regular physical exercise had a strong protective effect against cholesterol.
Misconception: You Should Wait For Your Doctor To Mention Cholesterol
You need to take charge of your health. Starting at age 20, ask your doctor to test your cholesterol, assess your factors and estimate your risk for a heart attack or stroke.
If youre between 20 and 39, your doctor can assess your lifetime risk. If youre between 40 and 75, they will assess your 10-year risk.
Once you know your risk, you can take action to lower it. Your doctor may recommend diet and lifestyle changes and possibly medication. Follow all of your doctors instructions and have your cholesterol and other risk factors checked every four to six years as long as your risk remains low.
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Something Has To Change
For decades, there was a decrease in deaths from CVD, mainly due to new medication options and a better understanding of how lifestyle choices, such as diet and exercise, affect heart health. However, in the past few years, there has been an increase in deaths from CVD, and that number is expected to get worse.
This disturbing pattern in CVD is not set in stone, and we have the ability to reverse this trend. How we approach CVD today can change the future for millions of people tomorrow.
The Risks of High Cholesterol
Older Adults And High Cholesterol: What You Need To Know
High cholesterol is well known as a risk factor for heart disease. Surprisingly, though, some research has shown that high cholesterol does not increase the risk of dying from heart disease in elderly people.
Does that mean that you can quit worrying about cholesterol in your golden years? Think again, says Johns Hopkins cardiologist Seth Martin, M.D., M.H.S., director of the Lipid Clinic at the Ciccarone Center for the Prevention of Heart Disease.
Heres what you need to know about cholesterol in late life.
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Will High Cholesterol Make Me Feel Bad
No. For most people, high cholesterol has no symptoms at all, according to the AHA. But when it causes plaque buildup in larger arteries in your heart, coronary artery disease can result, which can involve angina , chest pain, arrhythmia , and shortness of breath that can leave you low on energy, notes the NHLBI.
Coronary artery disease is the most common heart disease, but many people have no idea they have it until they suffer a heart attack, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention . For them, a heart attack is the first sign that theyd been living with high cholesterol.
The AHA advises having your cholesterol checked every four to six years or more frequently, if youre at risk starting at age 20. If your numbers are too high, you can take steps to lower your risk for both heart disease and stroke. Besides following a healthy diet and getting regular exercise, take medications as instructed if your doctor prescribes them.
Misconception: If The Nutrition Facts Label Shows No Cholesterol The Food Is Heart Healthy
A foods Nutrition Facts label can be helpful for choosing heart-healthy foods, if you know what to look for.
Many foods marketed as low-cholesterol have high levels of saturated or trans fats, both of which raise blood cholesterol.
Look for how much saturated fat, trans fat and total calories are in a serving. Ingredients are listed in descending order of use, so choose products where fats and oils are near the end of the ingredients list.
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What Are Early Signs Of Fh
When you have FH, early detection of high cholesterol levels is key to getting the treatment that can lower your risk of cardiovascular disease. In addition to family history of early cardiovascular problems, you may also notice lumps forming under your skin.
These fatty deposits are called xanthomas, and are particularly noticeable around tendons in the hands, knees, Achilles tendons and elbows, and under the skin around your eyes. Sometimes an ophthalmologist may spot signs of cholesterol deposits in your eyes as well.
Whether or not you have obvious signs of high cholesterol, you should get checked if heart disease runs in your family. Talk to your family doctor about your concerns a simple blood test is all it takes to see if your cholesterol levels are in the healthy range. A high cholesterol level at a young age is a particular red flag that you may have FH. If your doctor suspects you have the condition, you can undergo genetic testing to confirm the diagnosis.
Myth: I Would Be Able To Feel It If I Had High Cholesterol
Fact: High cholesterol usually has no signs or symptoms. You may not know you have unhealthy cholesterol levels until it is too latewhen you have a heart attack or stroke. Thats why its so important to get your cholesterol levels checked at least every 5 years.1,2 Learn more about getting your cholesterol checked.
Occasionally, some people develop yellowish growths on their skin called xanthomas, which are cholesterol-rich deposits. People with xanthomas may have high cholesterol levels.
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She Tried Diet And Exercise But Her High Cholesterol Came From Her Genes
Anna Rambo and American Heart Association CEO Nancy Brown.
As Anna Rambo and her husband moved around the country setting up homes in four states, having a son in each she knew there was something to take care of once life settled down.
The time came early last year.
She went to her family doctor for a physical and gave him the quick version of her medical history: Her mom had a stroke caused by high cholesterol, her sister has high cholesterol, and Anna herself was diagnosed with high cholesterol at age 8. Now in her late 30s, shed never taken medicine, but shed always followed a healthy diet and remained active.
OK, the doctor said. Lets take your blood work and see what the tests show.
The result: You have crazy-high numbers! the doctor told her.
Thats not all he said. Anna was diagnosed with familial hypercholesterolemia, a term shed never heard and one you probably havent, either. But if you or a loved one have a family history of high cholesterol, its something you should know especially if you have children.
Anna Rambo with her sister, Elizabeth, and mother, Jennifer. The three share familial hypercholesterolemia, which led to Jennifer’s stroke.
Spoiler alert for the rest of Annas story: Two of her boys have FH her baby is too young to be tested.
When I was growing up, they just told me to watch my diet and exercise, she said. But now, for my kids generation, there is hope. We know there is treatment available.
Can I Live Long With High Cholesterol
Untreated or undertreated high cholesterol is associated with a lower life span due to the risk of heart attack and stroke, but its still possible to live a long life with high cholesterol, provided you follow a heart-healthy lifestyle and take medication if needed. According to a study published in April 2018 in the journal Circulation, a healthy lifestyle defined as not smoking, doing moderate exercise, maintaining a healthy weight, and following a healthy diet was associated with an average of 14 more years of life for women and 12 for men.
Additional reporting by Erica Patino
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Ps: For More On How To Live Longer See My Books Stop The Clock Andmuscle Up
Why Should I Lower My Cholesterol
Evidence strongly indicates that high cholesterol can increase the risk of:
- narrowing of the arteries
- transient ischaemic attack often known as a “mini stroke”
- peripheral arterial disease
This is because cholesterol can build up in the artery wall, restricting the blood flow to your heart, brain and the rest of your body. It also increases the risk of a blood clot developing somewhere in your body.
Your risk of developing coronary heart disease also rises as your blood’s cholesterol level increases. This can cause pain in your chest or arm during stress or physical activity .
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Plant Sterols Can Lower Cholesterol Levels
Plant sterols are found naturally in plant foods including sunflower and canola seeds, vegetable oils and in nuts, legumes, cereals, fruit and vegetables. Some margarine and milks have concentrated plant sterols added to them. Margarines enriched with plant sterolslower LDL cholesterol in most people if the correct amount is eaten .
The Impact Of High Cholesterol On Your Life Insurance Policy
When you apply for a life insurance policy, you will have to take a medical exam. During this exam, you will be asked questions about your family history, lifestyle, and smoking and alcohol usage.
The person administering the exam will measure your height, weight, pulse, and blood pressure. Also, you will have to give a sample of your blood, which will be tested for your cholesterol and lipid levels, among other things. The high blood lipid levels medical term is sometimes referred to as a lipid disorder.
If you have hypercholesterolemia, the medical term for high levels of cholesterol in the blood, showing your insurance company that you are taking the right medications and are maintaining a healthy lifestyle will help keep your insurance rates down.
The hypercholesterolemia medical definition implies raised cholesterol levels in the blood. However, each individual is different so you should work out a treatment plan with your doctor. The table below provides average sample rates for male and female candidates with normal cholesterol levels.
Several-Term Policy Sample Rates
Life insurance rates with high cholesterol will be higher in many cases. If you have had high cholesterol in the past, dont panic. Keep in mind that many people respond well to medications that help lower their cholesterol levels. Is cholesterol medication for life? Do you have to take cholesterol medicine for life?
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Challenges In Managing Ascvd
Managing ASCVD involves lowering high LDL-C and keeping it low. This is done with a combination of improved diet, more exercise, and a daily pill called a statin. Statins are considered to be the standard of care for lowering high LDL-C.
Despite this approach, lowering LDL-C enough to reach target can be difficult.
Try The Mediterranean Diet
One of the best ways to decrease levels of LDL cholesterol is through your diet! A common diet that is recommended when trying to lower LDL cholesterol is the Mediterranean diet.
The Mediterranean diet is a diet that is high in fat due to the lower consumption of sugar and meat.
Foods like nuts, olive oil, fruits, and vegetables are at their highest levels when eating a Mediterranean diet which means youre less likely to have an increased cholesterol level.
People who eat this way also tend to lose weight over time because they are not consuming as many calories from sugars or fats since they get most of those essential nutrients through foods rich in protein and fiber.
Eating more healthy fats by including avocados with every meal will lower your risk for heart disease along with lowering LDL cholesterol levels! Avocado lovers can rejoice knowing that guacamole isnt just tasty, but its good for them too!
Mediterranean diets are commonly consumed in some of the healthiest places in the world called the Blue Zones.
Here is the typical Mediterranean diet pyramid:
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Inheriting Issues With Cholesterol
Familial hypercholesterolemia is an inherited defect in how the body recycles LDL cholesterol. As a result, LDL levels in the blood remain very high in severe cases, levels can reach above 190 milligrams per deciliter of blood.
People with FH are essentially born with high LDL cholesterol. Everyones cholesterol levels tend to rise with age. But those with FH have LDL levels that start high and go even higher over time.
Just like with non-inherited cholesterol issues, this contributes to atherosclerotic plaques, leading to a much higher-than-normal risk of coronary heart disease. If left untreated, people with FH have 20 times the risk of developing heart disease.
Men with FH get coronary heart disease up to 10 to 20 years earlier. Half of men with untreated FH will have a heart attack or angina before they turn 50. For some it will be as early as their 20s. In women, coronary heart disease appears up to 20 to 30 years earlier. About 30% of untreated women will have a heart attack before they turn 60.
These increased risks are independent of other risk factors, which can make matters worse. The good news: FH is treatable with a combination of lifestyle changes and medications.
Older People With Higher Cholesterol Live Longer
Population studies in Japan show that people of all ages with higher cholesterol live longer.1
Overall, an inverse trend is found between all-cause mortality and total cholesterol levels: mortality is highest in the lowest cholesterol group without exception. If limited to elderly people, this trend is universal. As discussed in Section 2, elderly people with the highest cholesterol levels have the highest survival rates irrespective of where they live in the world.
Consider the chart above, taken from the paper. It shows all-cause mortality by cholesterol levels, men on the left, women on the right.
Current guidelines call for keeping cholesterol at 200 mg/dl or lower, yet higher levels meant lower death rates.
What about outside Japan? The following chart shows cumulative all-cause mortality of people older than 85 in Leiden, The Netherlands, by cholesterol level.
The cohort with an average cholesterol of 252 mg/dl, the highest, had the lowest death rates.
The following shows data from elderly people in Finland. Those with cholesterol greater than 232 mg/dl had the lowest death rates.
A recent review in the prominent medical journal BMJ regarding LDL cholesterol, the risk marker considered most significant, found either no association or an inverse association between LDL and death rates.2
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