10 Steps to Heart Health
You can change your fate by simply eating well.
Heart-Healthy Diet Recipes and Menus
Quick and Healthy Low-Cholesterol Recipes and Menus
Heart-Healthy Apple Recipes
Healthy High-Fiber Recipes and Menus
Healthy Low Fat Recipes and Menus
Healthy Whole-Grains Recipes and Cooking Tips
Healthy Fish Recipes and Tips
Next: Step #1: Know your numbers. »
High blood cholesterol is linked with about one-third of heart disease cases worldwide, according to data from the United Nations. Your blood cholesterol (lipid profile) is made up of several readings: high-density cholesterol (HDL), low-density cholesterol (LDL) and triglycerides (TG). LDL cholesterol and triglycerides are often referred to as “bad” cholesterol; high levels (greater than 160 mg/dL and 200 mg/dL, respectively) are considered risk factors for developing heart disease. On the other hand, “good” HDL protects against cardiovascular disease. (A healthy HDL target is 60 mg/dL or higher.) But an undesirable lipid profile doesn’t mean that developing heart disease is inevitable. Research shows that changing your diet for the better can help lower “bad” LDL and TG levels, as well as increase “good” HDL cholesterol, if they’re out of healthy ranges. Talk with your doctor about a screening. Medications are sometimes needed.