Normal Range of Cholesterol Levels – Understanding the LDL-HDL Ratio

Information regarding the relationship between LDL, HDL, triglycerides and the total cholesterol counts keeps on changing every time. This has resulted to a confusion regarding the calculation of ones cholesterol ratio, or even its implications to our bodies. As it is, people need to understand their LDL: HDL ratio so as to make important decisions regarding their overall health.

It is hereby suggested that conducting a simple lipid panel is the best way towards shedding light to these cholesterol myths. After all, it is not a tasking endeavor since the results should be out after about one week. Again, in most cases the (results) will be sent to one’s home and it will be an individual’s responsibility to calculate the ratio. It is also advisable to check our work plans and what we eat and drink to avoid rising our LDL levels.

In most cases the results contains three key indicators, that is, the HDL, LDL, and the triglycerides (a form of fat in our blood). The results are given in milligrams per deciliter of blood (mg/dl). In essence, the HDL level should be 40mg/dl for men, while for women it should be about 50mg/dl, the LDL level should be between 100mg/dl and 130mg/dl, and lastly, the triglycerides numbers should be below 150mg/dl. To calculate the total cholesterol we use the formula (HDL + LDL) + (triglycerides/5). For instance, if one’s HDL is 45, LDL is 105, and triglycerides are 160, then the final figure will be: [(45 +105) + (160/5) = 182mg/dl], something lower than the desirable optimum limit of 200mg/dl. However, the borderline high risk is usually 239mg/dl.

Apparently, since a lot of concern is put on achieving a high HDL and a low LDL, other important factors may be ignored, for example athletes may have very high HDL and very low LDL since they indulge in strenuous exercises and dietary monitoring. In real sense this is not a good situation in as far as the LDL: HDL ratio is concerned, as they may find themselves hovering along the borderline of their optimum level even although, not at high risk per se. As such, much concern is now shifting to the maintenance of a healthy LDL: HDL ratio rather than on the total level. It is therefore targeted to maintain a ratio of between 0.3 and 0.4.