A General physician, cardiologist or endocrinologist should be consulted for dyslipidemia
2. Should the drugs, meant for lipid control, be taken lifelong?
The drugs used to control the level of lipid in the bloodstream do not correct the underlying metabolic disorders and so may have to be taken lifelong to maintain lipid levels.
3. Can I lower my lipid level without medication?
Yes, it is possible if you change your lifestyles and understand what to eat and what should be avoided. Below are some guidelines to follow:
- Stop Smoking - Increases triglyceride levels.
- Alcohol in Moderation - Alcohol can increase your triglyceride level. If it is the case the only way you will find out is to give it up for 3 months and recheck it.
- Keep Moving - If you have a sedentary lifestyle take breaks to walk around your office or house every 30 minutes.
- Maintain an Ideal Weight - know how much is your ideal weight and achieve the target. Even a reduction of 10% of weight can lower your triglyceride level.
- Beware of Bad Carbs & Good carbs - Avoid food like white bread, white rice and cornflakes as they can give boost to triglycerides. Eat whole grains, lentils, popcorn and brown rice.
- Increase the amount of fiber in the diet as they fill you up and avoids overeating.
- Beware of Bad Fats - Saturated & trans fats are bad fats. This mainly includes red meat and all kind of fried food.
- Go fish. Omega-3 fats in salmon, tuna, sardines, and other fatty fish can lower triglycerides. Having fish twice a week is fine.
- Get moving. Exercise lowers triglycerides and boosts heart-healthy HDL cholesterol.
4. How much cholesterol in diet is allowed and in what form it is best?
About 200 mg of cholesterol in diet per day should be enough.
5. Among animal fat, it is said that fish is healthy to eat. is it true?
Fish is a good source of protein if eaten once or twice a week. Fish like salmon are high in omega-3 fatty acids and can help lower triglycerides.
6. Should the level of cholesterol in a child also be monitored?
Any familial history or if there are signs of overweight or obesity it requires any child over 2 years of age to be monitored for the level of cholesterol. Ideally, they should be tested between the age 9 to 11 and then again between 17 and 21.
7. Once cholesterol levels are within limits, should treatment be discontinued?
The management of cholesterol levels involves monitoring diet, exercise as well as drug therapy. If treatment is stopped suddenly, then the level of cholesterol will rapidly rise to the level that existed before the start of treatment.
8. What are ways to increase the level of HDL in the body?
The level of HDL in the body can be increased by:
- Leading an active life. A brisk walk every day will do wonders to the level of HDL
- Avoid unhealthy diets
- Quit smoking
9. What are the complications of very high level of triglycerides in the blood?
When the triglyceride levels are very high and above 500 to 1,000 mg/dL individuals besides being prone to heart disease, fatty liver, strokes can also develop pancreatitis. This is a very serious inflammation of the pancreas.