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Total Cholesterol


Total Cholesterol is the amount of all the cholesterol present in the blood. Increased values correlate directly with an increased risk for heart disease.1

Cholesterol is a soft, waxy, fat-like substance that is needed for normal body processes, including “cellular functions and the production of hormones.”2 Cholesterol is made mostly in the liver, and the amount produced may be affected by hereditary factors so that more is produced than is needed. Also, cholesterol comes from foods, especially foods that are from animal sources. Modern “fast foods” (especially fried and high-fat foods) and lack of exercise also affect the amount of cholesterol in the body.


Increased total cholesterol results indicate the need for advanced testing. Those advanced results can identify any need for a change in lifestyle and/or medication to treat abnormal results.




1 Total Blood Cholesterol. The Cholesterol-Heart Disease Connection. www.nhlbisupport.com. Accessed 062006.
2 Blood Cholesterol. www.exrx.net


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