Stands for “Low-Density Lipoprotein”. LDL is a type of lipoprotein which contains the most cholesterol in the blood. It is called low density because its particles are tend to be less dense than other kinds of cholesterol particles.
In the cholesterol world, the LDL cholesterol is known for wearing a black hat. It usually accumulates in the arteries walls and causes the blockage of atherosclerosis, which may result in a heart attack or stroke.
So What Does LDL Calc Means?
The calc means it was calculated by a machine using a formula based on your levels of total cholesterol, triglycerides and HDL (good) cholesterol rather than being measured directly. Basically, a lower LDL level is recommended. However, it may depends on your health history. If you have heart disease or diabetes, the levels of LDL should not exceed 100 mg/dL. If you have two or more risk factors for heart disease, such as being overweight, smoking and high blood pressure, the ideal LDL level is below 130 mg/dL. If you have one or zero risk factors, the ideal LDL level is anything below 160 mg/dL. Your doctor will help you determine the condition of your heart and the LDL levels required per time.
How LDL Cholesterol is Calculated?
LDL Cholesterol is calculated by using the following formula:
LDL cholesterol = Total cholesterol – HDL cholesterol – (Triglyceride/5)
This formula is fairly accurate when triglycerides are lower than 200 mg/dL. But it is unreliable when triglyceride levels over 200 mg/dL due to the effects of VLDL (Very Low Density Lipoprotein) and IDL (Intermediate Density Lipoprotein). VLDL and IDL behave similarly to LDL but are not included in the figures produced by the calculation of LDL.
In cases in which triglycerides levels are high, measurements of non-HDL cholesterol and apolipoprotein B may be more useful in determining the overall risk of heart disease.
Once you succeed in determining your LDL levels, the next step you need to take is to engage in habits that can lower it. Regular exercise and eating more cholesterol lowering foods are the best ways to lower LDL cholesterol naturally. In severe cases, your doctor may prescribe medications and food supplements to lower it and prevent the risk of heart disease.