Numbers to Live By
Healthy number: Less than 150 mg/dL.
Triglycerides are a type of fat in the blood, and elevated levels increase your risk of type 2 diabetes and heart disease. Your triglyceride level (measured by milligrams of triglycerides per deciliter of blood, or mg /dL) is borderline high if it is between 150 and 199 mg /dL and high if it’s 200 mg /dL or higher.
Have yours checked: Annually. It’s usually part of the same test used to gauge your cholesterol. People with a high level are often low in HDL cholesterol and vice versa. Research suggests elevated triglycerides may be a greater risk factor for heart disease in women than in men, though no one knows exactly why this is. Just consider it another good reason to get your level into the target zone. To do that, lose weight, quit smoking, consume no more than one alcoholic drink a day, and exercise regularly.
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So maybe you can’t change your health overnight. But you can get a head start.