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Phoenix Cardiovascular Institute Hyperlipidemia


Hyperlipidemia is an excess of lipids or fats in your blood. This can increase your risk of heart attack and stroke due to poor blood flow through your arteries.


Cholesterol is a waxy fat that serves as a building block for cell membranes. Your liver manufactures all the cholesterol your body needs. Certain foods, like those high in saturated and trans fats, increase your body’s production of cholesterol. Too much cholesterol in your blood leads to the development of plaque in your arteries, and increases your risk of heart disease, as well as having a heart attack or stroke.

There are 2 types of cholesterol:

  • Low-density lipoprotein (LDL) - LDL is considered “the bad” cholesterol because it’s the fat that sticks to the walls of your arteries. You want low LDL numbers.
  • High-density lipoprotein (HDL) - HDL is considered the good cholesterol because it carries bad fats out of your bloodstream and to the liver for processing. You want high HDL numbers.


Triglycerides are a type of fat in your blood. They come from high-fat foods, such as oil and butter. If you eat more calories than your body burns, those excess calories are turned into triglycerides. Like your cholesterol levels, high triglycerides increase your risk of heart disease.