This cholesterol calculator explains what your TC, HDL LDL and triglyceride levels mean and whether you are under any risk for heart disease. Discover more on cholesterol levels and their effects in the text and tables below the form.

Enter at least 3 of the 4 fields below then press Calculate to determine the forth value, an interpretation of your cholesterol levels and the TC/HDL and LDL/HDL ratios:

Total Cholesterol: *
HDL Cholesterol: *
LDL Cholesterol: *
Triglycerides: *
Gender: *

## How does this cholesterol calculator work?

This tool functions as a total cholesterol, HDL, triglycerides and LDL calculator. Do you want to know whether your HDL, LDL levels or the TC/HDL ratio and LDL/ HDL ratio show an increased risk for heart disease?

Use it then to check if your cholesterol levels are in the normal range. All you have to do is input the data from your medical documents.

## Cholesterol example calculation:

For instance, for a male with total cholesterol of 235 mg/dl, HDL of 65 mg/dl, LDL of 150 mg/dl and triglycerides of 210 mg/dl, the interpretation is:

■ A Total Cholesterol level of 235 mg/dl represents a borderline risk value.

■ A HDL level of 65 mg/dl represents an optimal value.

■ A LDL level of 150 mg/dl represents a borderline risk value.

■ A Triglycerides level of 210 mg/dl represents a high risk value.

■ The TC/HDL ratio is 3.6. This value suggests low risk of cardiovascular disease.

■ The LDL/HDL ratio is 2.3. This value suggests average risk of cardiovascular disease.

## Why you need to get your cholesterol levels tested?

Cholesterol and lipid tests are blood tests that measure the amount of different forms of cholesterol in the blood. All these forms are called lipids. The test measures total blood cholesterol, the levels of HDL (good cholesterol), the levels of LDL (bad cholesterol) and triglycerides.

The relation between all these levels can determine the risk for developing a heart disease. Since raised levels are mostly asymptomatic, medical professionals are advising everyone over the age of 20 to have them tested regularly.

Determining if you have high cholesterol can be the first step towards lowering it and therefore reducing risks related such big values.

## About cholesterol testing and the lipid panel:

This kind of test is one of routine based on a simple blood sample from you. The health professional will take a sample of your blood that will further be analyzed in a laboratory and in about 24 hours the results will be ready.

However, there are some rules you need to respect to make sure that the test will be properly done. The usual cholesterol tests require a period of 9-12 hours of fasting before the blood is drawn and avoidance of strenuous effort before the test.

If you are consuming food or beverages then the test will only provide total cholesterol and HDL cholesterol values because the LDL and triglyceride levels are influenced by the food recently consumed.

You should also inform your doctor about any medical conditions you have, any medical treatment you are following or other details that you consider relevant and that could interfere with the results of the test.

## What results the cholesterol tests provide?

- Total cholesterol

- HDL (high-density lipoprotein), knows as the "good cholesterol"

- LDL (low-density lipoprotein), known as the "bad cholesterol"

- Triglycerides

The test report shows these cholesterol levels in milligrams per deciliter of blood (mg/dL).

## Can the cholesterol test result be altered?

Beside the usual living and eating habits, many other conditions can affect cholesterol and triglyceride levels.

These include: eating 9-12 hours before the test, medical therapy (diuretics, corticosteroids, antibiotics, birth control pills and hormones), health conditions (diabetes, liver diseases, hormonal diseases, infections, heart disease). Also gestate women tend to have higher cholesterol levels during pregnancy.

## How often should I get tested for cholesterol levels?

The American Heart Association advices that all adults age 20 or older should get tested for cholesterol levels every five years.

For men over age 45 and women over age 50 or if the previous test results have shown high cholesterol levels and other risk factors for heart disease are present, the cholesterol testing should be more frequent.

## What is Cholesterol?

Cholesterol is a form of fat in our bodies used in various body functions such as the stability of the cell membranes or the production of hormones.

Being a fatty substance, cholesterol can't dissolve in the blood therefore needs to be transported to and from the cells by carriers. The cholesterol-carrier package is called a lipoprotein.

HDL (high density lipoprotein) is known as the good cholesterol and represents one-fourth to one-third of blood cholesterol. HDL helps move cholesterol through blood to the liver for disposal. HDL tends to carry cholesterol away from arteries so higher HDL levels prevent arterial clogging. A high level of HDL lowers the risk for heart disease or stroke.

LDL (low density lipoprotein) is known as the bad cholesterol because instead of transporting cholesterol through the blood where is needed, LDL deposits some of it onto the vessel wall. When there is too much LDL in the blood it can clog various arteries and if this occurs in the coronary arteries can reduce or block blood supply to the heart, therefore increasing the risk for heart attacks or other serious heart conditions.

Triglycerides represent the form of fat the body uses to store for energy and give energy to muscles. High triglyceride levels are often associated with high total cholesterol levels, high LDL and low HDL increasing heart disease risk. Having a high triglyceride level along with a high LDL cholesterol may increase the risk for heart disease more than having only a high LDL level.

 Total Cholesterol HDL Cholesterol LDL Cholesterol Triglycerides Risk level >60 mg/dl Normal 200-239 mg/dl 40-60 mg/dl 100-160 mg/dl 150-200 mg/dl Borderline Risk >240 mg/dl >160 mg/dl >200 mg/dl High Risk

## HDL Cholesterol VS LDL Cholesterol:

The levels of HDL and LDL are crucial in determining the risk for different heart diseases. A cholesterol screening measures both these values. The total cholesterol (TC) represents the amount of HDL plus LDL. The TC/ HDL ratio is a good indicator of cardiovascular disease. For men an acceptable ratio of TC/HDL is 4.5 or below, and for women is 4.0 or below.

 Total Cholesterol/ HDL LDL/HDL Risk Male Female Male Female <3.4 <3.3 1 1.5 Low risk 5.0 4.5 3.6 3.2 Average risk 9.5 7.0 6.3 5.0 Moderate risk >23 >11 8 6.1 High risk

## How to calculate cholesterol ratio?

Once the results of your cholesterol testing are ready, you will receive a report with the four indicators of the cholesterol levels expressed in mg/dl. The two cholesterol ratios are:

TC/ HDL where TC represents total cholesterol. This value should be below 5.0, and a value that is less than 3.5 is considered optimal. LDL/ HDL is the ratio considered when determining heart disease risks. This value should be below 3.5, the optimal value being 2.5.

## References

1) Lecerf JM, de Lorgeril M (2011) . Br J Nutr 106 (1): 6–14

2) National Health Service. .

26 Dec, 2014 | 0 comments