Medbroadcast  Powered by MediResource

 Browse alphabetically
Family & Child Health
Men's Health
Women's Health
Seniors' Health
Ankylosing Spondylitis
Arthritis (Rheumatoid)
Atrial Fibrillation
Baby Health
Back Health
Bladder (Overactive)
Brain Health
Childhood Vaccinations
Crohn's & Colitis
Cold and Flu
Cosmetic Procedures
Depression NEW!
Digestive Health
Ear Health
Eating Disorders
Eye Health
Flu (Seasonal)
Healthy Skin
High Blood Pressure
Kidney Health
Low Testosterone NEW!
Lung Health
Medications and your Health
Mental Health
Multiple Sclerosis NEW!
Natural and Complementary Therapy
Oral Care
Osteoarthritis of the Knee NEW!
Psoriatic Arthritis (PsA)
Seasonal Health
Sexual Health
Sleep Health
Stroke Risk Reduction
Weight Management
Workplace Health
Yeast Infection
All health channels

Ask an Expert
Clinical Trials
Find a Specialist
Health features

Condition Info Drug Info Tests and Procedures Natural Products Ask an Expert Support Groups Clinical Trials
Home Bookmark Page Send to a Friend Sante Chez Nous Subscribe
High cholesterol basics
Testing, testing
Setting goals and tracking your progress
Reaching your treatment goals
Overcoming obstacles
Expert Opinion: Cholesterol
Cholesterol treatment FAQ
Talking to your doctor
Doctor Discussion Guide
Cholesterol Diary
Motivation Workbook
High cholesterol can increase your risk of heart disease, one of the leading causes of death in Canada. But effective cholesterol treatment saves lives. Whether you want to learn more about high cholesterol, have high cholesterol but do not take medication, or have high cholesterol and take medication, you've come to the right place!
Cholesterol resources
Health features
Health tools
Support groups
Related conditions
Related medications

What is high cholesterol?

What is high cholesterol?

Basically, high cholesterol means that the cholesterol level in your bloodstream puts you at an increased risk of developing heart disease.

How high is too high? This depends on your risk of developing heart disease. For people at a low risk of developing heart disease, cholesterol levels higher than 5 mmol/L (or 194 mg/dL in American units*) are considered high enough to require treatment. People with a higher risk of developing heart disease may need treatment at even lower cholesterol levels.

Talk to your doctor about whether your treatment is getting your cholesterol to a healthy level.

*To convert from Canadian to American units, multiply Canadian values by 38.7 to get American values. To convert the other way, divide the American units by 38.7 to get the Canadian values.

Where does cholesterol come from?

Our liver makes about 80% of the cholesterol that appears in our blood; the rest comes from our diet.

Many foods contain small amounts of cholesterol, but saturated fats and trans fats in our diet have the greatest impact on blood cholesterol levels. Saturated fats are usually found in meat and dairy products. That's why it is important to look not only at cholesterol levels in foods, but also at how much saturated fats the foods contain.

Although a small number of people can eat a diet high in saturated fats and keep their cholesterol levels under control, most people need to eat foods lower in fat to keep cholesterol at a healthy level.

The production of cholesterol in your liver is affected by your family history (genetics) and how your liver functions. This means that your diet and lifestyle are not the only things causing high cholesterol levels. The risk of high cholesterol also increases with age.

Is cholesterol all bad?

Your body needs some cholesterol for healthy functioning. Cholesterol is used to make the building blocks of the body (cells) and hormones. Hormones are chemical messengers that help the body's cells communicate. For example, the sex hormones estrogen and testosterone are made in the body from cholesterol.

Hot Topics - Bedwetting, Depression, Flu (Seasonal), Healthy Skin, Incontinence, Multiple Sclerosis, Psoriasis, Stroke Risk Reduction

Condition and disease information is written and reviewed by the MedBroadcast Clinical Team.

The contents of this site are for informational purposes only and are meant to be discussed with your physician or other qualified health care professional before being acted on. Never disregard any advice given to you by your doctor or other qualified health care professional. Always seek the advice of a physician or other licensed health care professional regarding any questions you have about your medical condition(s) and treatment(s). This site is not a substitute for medical advice.
© 1996 - 2015 MediResource Inc. - MediResource reaches millions of Canadians each year.