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Did cholesterol test. HDL is high. Should I be worried?

Dec 2012
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General & Family Physician
Practicing since : 2012
Answered : 1704 Questions
My recent HDL reading was over 200, but my LDL reading and triglyceride numbers were in the normal range. Should I be concerned over this healthy cholesteral reading being abnormally high?
Posted Thu, 24 Oct 2013 in General Health
Answered by Dr. Nsah Bernard 58 minutes later
Brief Answer:
HDL cholesterol is actually a good one

Detailed Answer:

Thanks for posting your query,

I see no reason why you should be worried given that the bad cholesterols i.e LDL and triglycerides are within normal ranges meanwhile the HDL cholesterol which is the good cholesterol, when high is instead healthy for the body as it protects against cardiovascular diseases.
Be rest assured that you have nothing to worry about.
But in the other hand, you should continue with a healthy lifestyle. Avoid too much fat or eating food which contain a lot of sugar. Exercise regularly. Alcohol is not advisable given that it deteriorates your health condition with increase cardiovascular diseases risk.

Hope this answers your question and helps you too.
Dr. Nsah
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: Did cholesterol test. HDL is high. Should I be worried? 4 hours later
I have read that HDL can be bad and good depending in size, density and numbers and that if a reading is too high, an expanded lipid profile test should be asked for. Do you agree?
Answered by Dr. Nsah Bernard 3 hours later
Brief Answer:
I do agree

Detailed Answer:

Thanks for updating,

I actually agree to disagree. In medical literature, it is generally accepted that when HDL is lower than the reference range, there is increased risk of coronary heart diseases where as higher values have decreased risk. The reference range of HDL cholesterol in men is 40-50 mg/dl. Values higher than that are considered good but in certain particular conditions the values may increase such as:

- Hyperalphalipoproteinemia
- Regular physical activity or exercise
- Chronic liver disease
- Weight loss

They are decreased in the following conditions:

- Obesity
- Uncontrolled diabetes mellitus
- Hepatocellular
- Cholestasis
- Chronic renal failure
- Metabolic syndrome
- Sedentary lifestyle
- Malnutrition
- Moderate ethanol consumption
- Cigarette smoking etc

These conditions predispose to either them getting higher or lower but the condition of increased HDL does not predispose to them.
What I am trying to say is that, increased HDL cholesterol is not a risk factor of cardiovascular diseases but rather works to protect the heart against this. If values are too high as in your case, then it is surely because of another diseases condition such as the ones mentioned above.

Hope this further clarifies you and wish you the best
Dr. Nsah
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: Did cholesterol test. HDL is high. Should I be worried? 6 hours later
Well, I recently lost over 30 pounds - went from 220 down to 185 basically following a low carb plan Z by Zola. I do not smoke and am generally quite active except when pain from my back incapacitated me and I drink ( generally wine) to dull the pain.

What could be the long range effect of this high HDL or.... Are you implying that I find out the outlying cause, change my habits and see if the reading goes down?
Answered by Dr. Nsah Bernard 20 minutes later
Brief Answer:
I do not feel you should worry much

Detailed Answer:

In my opinion as a physician, I do feel that your HDL cholesterol is not a cause of concern and I feel that it being higher will play a protective role against cardiovascular diseases. The bad cholesterol that you should worry about are the LDL and the triglycerides when they are increasing.
You could try identifying by yourself the possible cause of your increased cholesterol, but that will be you worrying when there is nothing worrying about.
As I said, I am positive that your HDL being higher is not a problem and might have risen because of your recent weight loss (which is something good and I will advise further weight loss plan).

Hope this helps further and wish you the best
Dr. Nsah
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
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