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What is the normal range for cholesterol levels?

Recommended total cholesterol levels are under 200 milligrams per deciliter (mg/dL) for most adults and under 170 mg/dL for children. Women typically need more HDL (good cholesterol) than men. Good heart health is like a building block: It’s cumulative. This is particularly true when it comes to high cholesterol.

How can I lower my cholesterol levels?

You can lower your cholesterol through heart-healthy lifestyle changes. They include a heart-healthy eating plan, weight management, and regular physical activity. If the lifestyle changes alone do not lower your cholesterol enough, you may also need to take medicines.

How is cholesterol levels calculated?

Your total blood cholesterol is calculated by adding your HDL and LDL cholesterol levels, plus 20% of your triglyceride level. “Normal ranges” are less important than your overall cardiovascular risk. Like HDL and LDL cholesterol levels, your total blood cholesterol level should be considered in context with your other known risk factors.

What do cholesterol levels mean?

Your total cholesterol level is the overall amount of cholesterol found in your blood. It consists of: LDL is also called “bad” cholesterol because it blocks your blood vessels and increases your risk for heart disease. HDL is considered “good” cholesterol because it helps protect you from heart disease.

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