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What Does it Mean When You Have High Triglycerides?

by John Wu
  • Overview

    Triglycerides are a form of fat in the bloodstream that's created with dietary fat that's not needed immediately by the body. Later on, triglycerides get stored in the body as fat deposits. Like high cholesterol, complications often occur with high triglycerides.
  • Function

    High levels of triglycerides appear in the bloodstream after a fatty meal or if the body experiences trouble processing fat due to another disease.
  • Cause

    Although excess consumption of food is the usual cause, kidney disease, diabetes, hypothyroidism and liver disease sometimes cause high triglycerides as well.
  • Effects

    Excess fats in the bloodstream eventually lead to the hardening of the arteries. That leads to a higher risk of stroke, heart attack and heart disease.
  • Significance

    High triglycerides sometimes point to an overeating problem, because triglycerides are a byproduct of excess dietary fat.
  • Prevention

    Eating less calories, eating less fat, and losing weight are the best ways to keep low triglyceride levels. Exercise increases the level of calorie expenditure in the body, which also lowers triglyceride levels.
  • Solution

    When diet and exercise are not sufficient, cholesterol lowering medicines such as statins also lower triglyceride levels.

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