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Dr. Andrew Rynne

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Is my cholesterol high if it is 216?

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Dr. Ilir Sharka

Cardiologist

Practicing since :2001

Answered : 6196 Questions

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Posted on Fri, 6 Nov 2015 in Hypertension and Heart Disease
Question: Hello, I am 43 years old, male, white. I am healthy in general. I am about 1.75 tall and weight 175 pounds. I am athletic, exercise 5 to 6 days a week (two to three days intensely and the other days moderately). I have been "in shape" all my life. I eat well: lots of fruit and vegetables, all kinds of protein, nothing fried, low on carbs... maybe a little high on the protein consumption. There is a history of high cholesterol in my family. My father has had two heart attacks; he was overweight and did not eat too well. In my last blood test this month my total cholesterol was at 216; my HDL 80, my LDL 120; triglycerides 81 and blood pressure super fine. Everything else is between normal ranges and good. i have always had to monitor my total cholesterol and its been a little over or under 200 all my life. A doctor recommended that I take medicine to lower it. i know that I can get that 216 lower just by lowering my intake of animal protein, without medication, which I prefer not to take. But, do I really need to? My question is: is a 216 total cholesterol dangerous even when everything else seems to be super fine, even my HDL and LDL? Thanks.
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Answered by Dr. Ilir Sharka 17 minutes later
Brief Answer:
You have an excellent blood lipid profile and need no treatment.

Detailed Answer:
Hello!

Welcome and thank you for asking on HCM!

I understand your concern and would like to explain that total cholesterol levels are not a fair indicator of your cardiovascular risk.

More important is the ratio total cholesterol/HDL cholesterol, which is known to indicate more specifically your cardio vascular risk.

For men, values under 4.5 would indicate a low cardio vascular risk.

In this case, this calculated ratio is 2.7, which means that no treatment is needed in your case.

Besides, the values of HDL higher than 60mg/dl, are considered a protecting factor against cardio vascular risk.

Regarding your family history, I would explain that your fathers medical history is related to a unhealthy lifestyle, and it is not the same case with yours.

So relax and don't worry about it!

You don't need to be treated for your cholesterol levels. You have an excellent blood lipid profile.

Hope to have been helpful!

Feel free to ask any other questions, whenever you need!

Best regards,

Dr. Iliri
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
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