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Total cholesterol level: Lower is better. Less than 200 mg/dL is best.
LDL (bad) cholesterol: Lower is better. Less than 100 mg/dL is best.
HDL (good) cholesterol: Higher is better. More than 60 mg/dL is best.
Triglyceride levels: Lower is better. Less than 150mg/dL is best.
You can lower your cholesterol by taking these steps:
Maintain a healthy weight. If you are overweight, losing weight can help lower your total cholesterol and LDL ("bad cholesterol") levels. Calculate your Body Mass Index (BMI) to see if you are at a healthy weight. If not, try making small changes like eating an apple instead of potato chips, taking the stairs instead of the elevator, or parking farther away from the entrance to your office, the grocery store, or the mall. (But be sure to park in a safe, well-lit spot.)
Eat better. Eat foods low in saturated fats, trans fats, and cholesterol.
Get moving. Exercise can help lower LDL ("bad cholesterol") and raise HDL ("good cholesterol"). Exercise at a moderate intensity for at least 30 minutes most days of the week. Take a brisk walk on your lunch break or take the stairs instead of the elevator.
Take your medicine. If your doctor has prescribed medicine to lower your cholesterol, take it exactly as you have been told to.
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