Cholesterol Levels For Men And Women
HDL levels differ for men and women
Women naturally have higher HDL cholesterol levels than men due to differences in the genes. Women should aim for an HDL cholesterol level above 1.2mmol/L while men should aim for above 1mmol/L.
Cholesterol levels can rise during pregnancy
During pregnancy, both cholesterol and triglyceride levels can significantly rise. We don’t recommend getting a cholesterol test during pregnancy because your results won’t be accurate. Our advice is to wait until at least 6-8 weeks after your baby is born or after you stop breastfeeding to get a cholesterol test. This means you don’t need to worry unnecessarily.
Cholesterol levels rise during the menopause
Women may also find their cholesterol levels rise during the menopause.
What Is Remnant Cholesterol
Weve talked about TG, HDL, and a bit about LDL. Theres another thing we ought to coverremnant cholesterol.
Remnant cholesterol is the most dangerous type of cholesterol particle. Its also called triglyceride-rich lipoproteins , which consists primarily of VLDL and IDL .
Image from the Cholesterol Code by Dave Feldman.
Remnant cholesterol is short-lived in the plasma of a healthy person. RC particles appear only briefly after a meal. They are then metabolized into other lipoproteins by the breakdown of triglycerides inside an RC particle. This breakdown is accomplished by lipoprotein lipase lining the luminal surface of capillaries.
RC is also higher in the serum of those with CV disease risk . It is calculated by subtracting LDL and HDL cholesterol levels from total cholesterol number .
Causes Of High Cholesterol
Are you bothered about the question of what is a good cholesterol ratio? As previously said, excessive cholesterol levels can have a significant impact on our general health. As a result, its important to understand what causes high cholesterol. Thyroid insufficiency, type 2 diabetes, and obesity are all common causes of hypercholesterolemia. Genetic illnesses could also cause it like familial hypercholesterolemia, which isnt all that uncommon roughly 0.3 percent of the population has mutations that produce high LDL cholesterol!
Your lifestyle, however, is the most essential factor determining your lipid and cholesterol levels! Diet influences cholesterol levels, although the magnitude of that effect varies by patient. Does Dietary Cholesterol Matter? Results of a Meta-Analysis the consumption of high-cholesterol foods raises serum cholesterol levels, according to a study published in 2016. Trans fatty acids also have a high atherogenic potential, as they lower HDL cholesterol while raising LDL cholesterol .
Recommended Reading: Are Any Vegetables High In Cholesterol
How To Calculate Cholesterol Ratios
Three indicators describe your heart disease risk with high accuracy. They are all built as ratios of the aforementioned blood results and are therefore called cholesterol ratios.
Are you wondering what a good cholesterol ratio is? You can use this total cholesterol calculator to find the following values:
LDL/HDL ratio is simply the LDL level divided by the HDL level. LDL/HDL ratio is one of the most popular measures of heart disease risk.
Cardiovascular Heart Disease Prediction
One thousand seven hundred twenty men aged 50 years, free from diabetes and cardiovascular disease, were evaluated from 1970 to 1974. They were followed for 40 years to see if they would have myocardial infarction or an ischemic stroke .
Those with a high TG/HDL-C ratio at baseline were more insulin resistant, with a significantly more adverse cardiometabolic risk profile than those with a lower ratio. This group also showed an increased risk of cardiovascular disease.
What is surprising in the study is that 25% of apparently healthy 50-year-old men with the highest TG/HDL-C ratio had a significantly more adverse cardiometabolic profile at baseline and developed more cardiovascular disease over the next 40 years. This is what I referred to earlier about the usefulness of the TG/HDL ratio to predict cardiovascular diseases independent of obesity.
You May Like: How To Help Lower Triglycerides
Can Lowering Carbs Actually Improve Tg/hdl Rc And Cv Risk
Yes. There is plenty of evidence showing this. Multiple studies range from clinical trials in animals and humans to meta-analyses. Here are 4 of them:
- The Abbasi study was a human clinical trial using a crossover design. People ate high carbs for 2 weeks, then low carbs for 2 weeks, with a washout period of 2 weeks in between. The high-carb diet doubled TG levels, tripled remnant cholesterol, and lowered HDL by 15% .
- The Wang study is a randomized clinical trial in laboratory mice .
- The Volek study is a meta-analysis. It reviews pre-2005 studies which had already shown that low-carb diets decrease triglycerides and remnant cholesterol while increasing HDL cholesterol level .
- The Ebbeling study was also a human subjects clinical trial. It was done at Harvard. Subjects on a low-carb diet had lower TG and higher HDL cholesterol. Also, researchers showed that low-carb diets were less likely to result in weight rebound due to improved energy expenditure and leptin .
My name is Ford Brewer. My team and I work to prevent heart attack, stroke, cancer, and dementia. Our goal is to help you understand how to prevent major killers and disablers. Most of them are driven by the process of cardiovascular inflammation.
If you want to know more about the science of preventive medicine or you have questions about certain aspects of your health, check out our webinars, membership programs, and online courses.
The Triglyceride/ Hdl Ratio
The triglyceride/HDL ratio is one test, and both are components of the lipid profile. Lipid profiles are routinely ordered to check for total cholesterol, LDL, HDL, and triglycerides levels.
The triglyceride/HDL ratio is the value of the triglyceride divided by the HDL.
A study compared the Triglyceride/HDL ratio among different racial and ethnic groups in the US. The study compared the triglyceride/HDL ratio and fasting insulin. Fasting insulin is another measure of insulin resistance.
In the study , TG/HDL 3.5 correlates with insulin resistance across three BMI categories and three ethnic groups, namely the non-Hispanic whites, non-Hispanic blacks, and Mexican Americans.
The optimal cut-off point of the TG/HDL-C ratio for predicting insulin resistance and hyperinsulinemia was 3.0 for non-Hispanic whites and Mexican Americans and 2.0 for non-Hispanic blacks.
The TG/HDL-C ratio with hyperinsulinemia was stronger among people with a BMI < 25 kg/m2 than those with a BMI 30 kg/m2. The significance of that finding is early detection. High triglyceride levels happen first before excess visceral fat or obesity if obvious. Some people with high triglycerides may not even be obese.
The use of that high TG/HDL to dete4c insulin resistance in the non-obese will be duplicated in children and proven with another study below.
Also Check: What Causes High Hdl Cholesterol
How The Ldl Hdl Ratio And Triglycerides Tests Are Done :
If your doctor wants LDL HDL ratio and Triglycerides tests on you, you may need to go through these tests. During the LDL HDL ratio and Triglycerides blood tests, a pathologist will put a needle into your veins and take out a small quantity of blood. A pathologist is a physician in the medical field who thoroughly studies the causes and effects of disease. Within a few hours you will get your LDL HDL ratio and Triglycerides Test reports by your pathologist.
Pairwise Comparison With Metabolic Syndrome Parameters
Pairwise comparison of receiver operating characteristic analysis for incident IHD revealed that the AUC of TG/HDL-C was significantly higher than that of metabolic syndrome , which was similar to that of the number of metabolic syndrome components . In the longitudinal model, the AUC, sensitivity, and specificity of TG/HDL-C were 0.607, 64.2, and 52.1%, respectively .
Table 5. TG/HDL-C vs. metabolic syndrome and the number of metabolic syndrome components for predicting ischemic heart disease.
Recommended Reading: How To Lower Triglycerides And A1c
Why Triglyceride/hdl Ratio Predicts Diabetes
Doctors screen for diabetes by ordering a fasting blood sugar. However, some people with pre-diabetes have normal fasting blood sugar levels. The first thing that happens when you start to become diabetic is that your blood sugar rises too high after you eat, even if your fasting blood sugar is normal. If your blood sugar is greater than 140 two hours after you eat, you are at least pre-diabetic, even if all your other tests are normal.
High Triglycerides: When your blood sugar rises too high, your liver converts the extra sugar into a fat called triglycerides, so an early sign of diabetes is a triglyceride level above 150 mg/dL .
Low HDL Cholesterol: High blood fat levels can cause clots and heart attacks, so you use your good HDL cholesterol to carry triglycerides from your bloodstream to your liver. A low HDL cholesterol is another early sign of diabetes.
Fatty Liver: Your HDL cholesterol carries extra fat from your bloodstream to your liver. Too much fat stored in your liver is called a fatty liver. Your liver is supposed to prevent blood sugar levels from rising too high. When blood sugar levels rise, the pancreas releases insulin which lowers high blood sugar levels by driving sugar from the bloodstream into the liver. However, if you have a fatty liver, it does not accept the sugar, so blood sugar levels remain high to cause diabetes.
What Is High Cholesterol
Cholesterol is a type of fat in your blood. Your cells need cholesterol, and your body makes all it needs. But your body can make too much cholesterol if you eat a diet high in saturated and trans fat.
If you have too much cholesterol, it starts to build up in your arteries. This is called hardening of the arteries, or atherosclerosis. It is the starting point for some heart and blood flow problems. The buildup can narrow the arteries and make it harder for blood to flow through them. The buildup can also lead to dangerous blood clots and inflammation that can cause heart attacks and strokes.
There are different types of cholesterol.
- LDL is the bad cholesterol. its the kind that can raise your risk of heart disease, heart attack, and stroke.
- HDL is the good cholesterol. Its the kind that is linked to a lower risk of heart disease, heart attack, and stroke.
Dont Miss: How Do You Test Cholesterol
Recommended Reading: What Do You Do For High Cholesterol
Cholesterol And Its Consequences
Without cholesterol, the life of humans and animals would not be possible. It is an essential structural component of cell membranes and is needed in the process of production of steroid hormones, bile acids, and vitamin D.
Moreover, you should notice that you can have cholesterol levels that are too low in certain clinical situations, but it is not very often. This condition is called hypocholesterolemia. It is usually caused by hyperthyroidism , adrenal insufficiency, liver diseases, depression, cerebral hemorrhage, or cancer. In sporadic cases, it is caused by SLOS a genetic abnormality in synthesizing cholesterol.
On the other hand, high levels of cholesterol, so-called hypercholesterolemia lead to substantial health problems. The most important consequence of high cholesterol is atherosclerosis. It is a disease in which the inside of an artery narrows due to the accumulation of plaque. At first, patients usually don’t have any symptoms, but eventually, it causes:
- Coronary artery disease
- Peripheral arteries disease and
- Chronic kidney failure.
That is why it is so important to know and regulate your cholesterol levels to minimize the risk of atherosclerosis and its consequences!
How To Lower Your Cholesterol
If you are wondering what to do about your cholesterol, follow these rules:
Get regular aerobic physical exercise. It has been proven that regular exercises increase HDL cholesterol and decrease LDL cholesterol . Moreover, it may also lower your risk of heart attack or stroke, as it reduces the blood pressure.
Diet. Eat foods low in fatty acids, saturated fats, and cholesterol. Don’t forget to include in your diet fish, as they are a source of omega-3 fatty acids. Consider eating cholesterol-lowering foods, such as margarine, enriched with plant sterols and stanols.
Use medications. If the non-pharmacological ways of treatment don’t bring satisfactory results, don’t hesitate to contact your doctor, who may propose drug therapies. There are numerous drugs that doctors can use to lower your bad cholesterol and correct your LDL HDL ratio. It has been scientifically proven that they not only lower cholesterol but also and prolong life.
Don’t be afraid to make valuable changes in your life. Calculate your LDL HDL ratio and other ratios using our cholesterol ratio calculator. Lower your cholesterol, treat hypertension and diabetes, check for abnormalities in your ECG, protect your heart and live healthier, longer, and happier!
Also Check: Does Flaxseed Oil Raise Your Cholesterol
How Do Good And Bad Cholesterol Affect The Body
High-density lipoprotein, or HDL, is the good cholesterol. The benefit of HDL lies in the fact that it carries bad cholesterol back to the liver. In doing so, it cleanses cholesterol from the bloodstream.
Low-density lipoprotein, or LDL cholesterol, is the bad cholesterol. The higher the level of LDL cholesterol, the greater your risk of a heart attack. When the level of LDL cholesterol goes up, excess cholesterol can build up and stick to the walls of your arteries. This causes damage. The buildup is called plaque, and the formation of plaque can cause arteries to harden and narrow. This hardening is called atherosclerosis. It’s also known as hardening of the arteries. If a plaque becomes unstable, a blood clot can form, suddenly blocking an artery. This causes a heart attack or stroke.
How Does A Cholesterol Calculator Work
Some LDL calculators operate using the Friedewald equation from 1972, while others use the Iranian lipid profile calculation formula from 2008. Based on the blood sample results for total cholesterol, triglycerides, and HDL, it calculates LDL cholesterol levels. The second equation is often suggested for those with a small carbohydrate intake when the triglyceride content is smaller than the mean value required.
You can choose to type the three values into the cholesterol calculator as mmol/L or mg/dL according to the obtained results from the lab.
Recommended Reading: Are Cheerios Good For Cholesterol
Recommended Reading: Is Red Yeast Rice Good For Cholesterol
Baseline Characteristics Of The Study Population
Table 1 shows the baseline characteristics of the study population based on the TG/HDL-C quartiles. The mean age, BMI, TG levels, HDL-C levels, and TG/HDL-C were 46.1 ± 9.5 years, 23.4 ± 3.0 kg/m2, 124.2 ± 84.9, 53.2 ± 12.6, and 2.64 ± 2.42 mg/dl, respectively.
Table 1. Baseline characteristics of the study population according to the TG/HDL-C quartiles.
The group with the highest TG/HDL-C quartile showed the highest mean values of BMI, mean arterial pressure, fasting plasma glucose, total cholesterol, and hsCRP levels, as well as the lowest mean HDL-C levels. Moreover, this group showed the highest proportions of current smokers and alcohol drinkers, as well as the lowest proportion of individuals involved in regular exercise. The prevalence of hypertension, impaired fasting glucose, and metabolic syndrome were 20.3, 18.0, and 12.1%, respectively, which gradually increased according to TG/HDL-C quartiles. There was no sex difference in the age distribution however, men showed a higher TG/HDL-C than women .
Table 2. Clinical and biochemical characteristics according to sex.
Triglyceride/hdl Ratio Predicts Heart Attacks Diabetes
~Dr. Gabe Mirkin’s Fitness and Health e-Zine
Two blood tests that are done during routine physical exams can be used to predict whether you are at increased risk for a heart attack . It’s called the triglyceride/HDL ratio, calculated by dividing your triglycerides number by your HDL number.
- Your triglycerides should be below 150 mg/dL
- Your HDL cholesterol should be above 40
- Thus your Triglycerides/HDL ratio should be under 3.75
The triglycerides/HDL ratio also predicts risk for diabetes and pre-diabetes :345-9). Almost fifty percent of North American adults already have diabetes or pre-diabetes , diseases that damage every cell in your body to cause heart attacks, strokes, dementia, impotence, many cancers, blindness, deafness, and premature death. If your triglyceride/HDL ratio is above 3.75, you are at increased risk for pre-diabetes or diabetes. Check with your doctor. Since the majority of cases of diabetes are caused by a faulty lifestyle, not just by genetics, diabetes is both a preventable and curable disease with lifestyle changes. Many people with pre-diabetes and early diabetes can return to normal by changing their lifestyles long before they develop any symptoms of the disease.
Don’t Miss: How To Prepare Oatmeal To Lower Cholesterol
Which Medications Improve Tg/hdl
- Statins. The major impact of statins on TG/HDL is to lower TG. But usually, statins are given to lower LDL. Sometimes they can also increase HDL levels but still not as much as how they lower TG. They can lower TG by as much as 50% .
- Prescription-strength niacin
- Prescription-strength omega-3s. Icosapent ethyl , Epanova, and Lovaza are prescription forms of omega-3s
What Should Your Results Include
As a minimum, you should be given your total cholesterol and HDL , then you can work out your ratio of total cholesterol to HDL cholesterol .
You might also have your triglycerides tested, these are another type of blood fat which are linked to heart disease.
This is sometimes written as ‘serum cholesterol’ or ‘TC’ and refers to your overall level of cholesterol.
Your non-HDL cholesterol is your total cholesterol minus your HDL cholesterol. Its all the ‘bad’ cholesterol added together, including your LDL cholesterol. Ideally it should be as low as possible.
Your HDL cholesterol helps clear the cholesterol out of your arteries, while your LDL cholesterol can clog them up. Your HDL cholesterol should ideally be high, around 1.4mmol/L, but our specialists believe that HDL levels higher than this might not give you any extra benefit.
You might be given a TC:HDL ratio, which is the ratio of HDL compared to the total cholesterol. If not, you can work it out from your HDL and total cholesterol numbers. This should be as low as possible. Above 6 is considered high.
You May Like: What Is Good To Reduce Cholesterol