Cholesterol

The Center for Primary Healthcare -  - Internal Medicine

The Center for Primary Healthcare

Internal Medicine & Pediatrics located in Orland Park, IL

Cholesterol was believed for years to be the main culprit causing heart disease. Because high cholesterol was found in association with those experiencing heart disease; and because cholesterol is found in foods high in fat--a group of influential scientists, nutritionists and clinicians influenced American policy to wage a campaign during the last 40 years to reduce dietary fat, for the purpose of reducing cholesterol, to prevent heart disease. We succeeded in reducing our dietary fat in America, but our heart disease has not improved as we were promised. The concern about cholesterol is more complicated than it was originally believed. If you have high cholesterol we can help you interpret what that means in the context of your other biomarkers (triglycerides, inflammatory markers, blood sugar, and insulin levels). At The Center for Primary Healthcare in Orland Park, Illinois, we are able to provide advanced lipid testing for those patients for whom a more detailed examination of their lipoproteins is necessary to guide their treatment plan. There are several factors, including cholesterol, that have been identified as risk factors for coronary artery disease. Nevertheless, these risk factors do not fully account for the prevalence of coronary artery disease that we see. One reason for this is that the standard cholesterol test is incomplete. At The Center for Primary Healthcare in Orland Park, Illinois, we are able to provide advanced lipid testing for those patients for whom a more detailed examination of their lipoproteins is necessary to guide their treatment plan. William Crevier, MD, and Suzanne Deese, MSN, APRN, CNP, test your cholesterol and can help you manage high cholesterol or other lipid abnormalities in order to optimize your health. Schedule an appointment today to discuss your cholesterol and lipid management with our team.

Cholesterol Q & A

What is cholesterol?

Cholesterol is a fatty substance that your body produces. It helps your body build healthy cells and does a lot of good for you in moderate amounts. Your body contains two types of cholesterol:

Low density lipoprotein (LDL)

LDL is considered the bad type of cholesterol. It easily builds up on the walls of your blood vessels, making it difficult for blood to freely flow through them. Buildups of LDL cholesterol can cause clots in your blood.

High density lipoprotein (HDL)

HDL is the good type of cholesterol. It collects cholesterol in your blood vessels and takes it back to your liver to be eliminated from your body.

What happens if my cholesterol is high?

High amounts of bad cholesterol in your body can lead to many health issues, some of which are life-threatening. If you don’t manage it, high cholesterol can lead to:

  • Heart attacks
  • Stroke
  • High blood pressure
  • Kidney disease
  • Chest pain
  • Gallstones

Because the risks are so severe, you need to get your cholesterol checked regularly and live a healthy lifestyle for prevention.

How do I know if I have high cholesterol?

High cholesterol alone does not have any identifiable symptoms, so it’s important for you to get your levels checked regularly by your doctor. You may be at a higher risk and need more frequent screenings if:

  • You’re overweight or obese
  • You eat a poor diet
  • You smoke
  • You don’t exercise often
  • You have diabetes
  • You have family members with high cholesterol

Whether or not you’re at a higher risk, you should take steps to prevent high cholesterol, like eating a healthy diet and exercising regularly.

How can I manage my cholesterol levels?

If you already have high cholesterol, Dr. Crevier helps you manage your levels through diet and medications if necessary.  If you’re at risk of getting high cholesterol or if you think you have it, call or schedule an appointment online at The Center for Primary Healthcare today.