Cholesterol is:

Waxy, fatty material found in the bloodstream and in all of your body’s cells
It is made by your liver, and is found in foods you eat
The technical term for it is lipoprotein because it is made up of fat (lipid) and protein

HDL (“H” IS FOR HEALTHY)
Considered “good” or healthy because it removes cholesterol and carries it back to the liver, flushing it from the body
Prevents cholesterol from building up along the walls of the arteries
Reduces risk for heart disease and stroke
Higher HDL numbers are better!

LDL (“L” IS FOR LOUSY)

Considered “bad” or lousy because having high levels can lead to a buildup of plaque in the arteries and result in heart disease and stroke
Plaque is a thick, hard layer of cholesterol that can narrow the blood vessels and clog arteries
A build-up of plaque in the arteries causes a condition called atherosclerosis, or “hardening of the arteries”
Chest pain, also called angina, is caused by plaque partly blocking an artery to the heart, which reduces blood flow to the heart

Risk Factors

Family history
Age
Other risk factors
Not being active
Weight
Diet
Eating saturated fats, trans fats, dietary cholesterol, triglycerides

Vocabulary

Lipid panel-The basic lipids blood test measures total cholesterol, triglyceride levels, HDL and LDL cholesterol. More extensive lipid profile testing also includes VLDL, ratio of total cholesterol to HDL, and ratio of LDL to HDL.
Triglycerides-a type of fat (lipid) found in your blood. When you eat, your body converts any calories it doesn’t need to use right away into triglycerides. The triglycerides are stored in your fat cells. Later, hormones release triglycerides for energy between meals.
Atherosclerosis-is a condition where the arteries become narrowed and hardened due to a buildup of plaque around the artery wall.
Anginaa condition marked by severe pain in the chest, often also spreading to the shoulders, arms, and neck, caused by an inadequate blood supply to the heart.