Know your cholesterol ratio – The heart of the matter: cardiovascular news at a glance – Brief Article
The ratio of LDL (bad) to HDL (good) cholesterol appears to be a better indicator of the risk of heart disease than LDL levels alone, according to reports published in a recent issue of the American Journal of Preventive Medicine.
Doctors should also keep an eye on the ratio of total cholesterol to HDL cholesterol to better determine heart disease risk, says lead researcher Dr. Sundar Natarajan of the New York University School of Medicine and his colleagues.
Data show that almost half of all patients with coronary heart disease have normal LDL levels but may have low levels of HDL, resulting in a high LDL/HDL ratio. In the study, those with similar ratios had similar risk for heart disease, regardless of any differences in LDL or total cholesterol levels.
WHAT IS YOUR CHOLESTEROL RATIO?
To calculate your LDL/HDL ratio, divide the LDL cholesterol level by HDL cholesterol. The ratio should be below 3.5 to 1.
_ (LDL cholesterol) / _(HDL cholesterol) = _: 1
To determine your total cholesterol to HDL ratio, divide the total cholesterol level by HDL cholesterol. The goal is to keep the ratio below 5 to 1; the optimum ratio is 3.5 to 1.
_ (Total cholesterol) / _(HDL cholesterol) = _: 1
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