Ideal Cholesterol in Cardiac patients
High Cholesterol levels has been confirmed to represent a high risk factor for heart disease and could also lead to other complication affecting other organs of the body. Once` a cardiac issue develops, it becomes exceptionally important to maintain blood cholesterol levels within normal or near normal ranges. Blood lipids comprise of Low density lipoproteins (LDL), high density lipoproteins (HDL), triglycerides (TGL) and total cholesterol.
High blood cholesterol levels are bad for the heart because fat droplets have the propensity to get deposited in blood vessels of heart and block the arteries. This can hamper the blood flow from the heart and potentially trigger a heart attack.
Recommendations for Blood Cholesterol:
Below are the recommendations for the ideal blood cholesterol levels:
Ideal blood cholesterol in a Normal person:
In a normal person (with no known cardiac disease or risk) total cholesterol levels of less than 200mg/dL is considered to be fine and the person needs to maintain at less than 200mg/dL to prevent any long-term cardiac complications due to cholesterol. However for heart patients, the ideal blood cholesterol target levels are set at an even more aggressively low level (<160mg/dL)
Borderline high blood cholesterol:
A blood cholesterol level between 200 and 239mg/dL is considered high risk and life style modification is advocated to bring down the cholesterol levels to a healthy baseline. Although studies have suggested that blood cholesterol levels of less than 240mg/dL are not associated with an increased risk of heart diseases but higher than normal values indicate that the person is not leading a healthy lifestyle and may cross the reference range if this lifestyle is continued for long.
High risk blood cholesterol levels:
A blood cholesterol level of more than 240mg/dL is considered high and is associated with an elevated risk of:
- Heart disease
- Disease of blood vessels
Recommended Blood cholesterol levels in heart patient:
Blood cholesterol levels in heart patients must be kept lower than 160 mg/dL to prevent complications or another episode of heart attack. In heart patients with associated blood cholesterol issues, it is recommended to start some anti-cholesterol medications. Diets containing high density lipoproteins are considered good for heart as HDL carry cholesterol and cholesterol related droplets from all parts of the body to liver where extra lipids can be stored until required by the body.
Recommendation for people with high cholesterol:
- Maintain a regular pattern of exercise and perform physical activity on daily basis.
- Consume a fat-free or low fat diet by consuming more vegetables and less cholesterol containing diet.
- Diets rich in Vitamin C and other anti-oxidants also protect heart from oxidative damage.
- It is especially recommended for cardiac patients to take medications that lower blood cholesterol levels.
- Blood cholesterol levels must be checked once in every 3 to 4 month period to see response to treatment and in case the blood cholesterol levels are refractory or unresponsive to treatment, physicians must change the medications.
- Statins are considered most safe and effective in decreasing blood cholesterol levels; however these affect liver functions greatly and can be replaced by other types of anti-cholesterol medications.
- For best results, medications must be supplemented with exercise, healthy nutritious diet and healthy active lifestyle.
- Alcohol and smoking also affects lipid producing enzymes and thus quitting smoking and alcohol consumptions also helps.