Cholesterol Specialist

Oza Family Care and Wellness Center

Family Medicine & General Family Practice located in Houston, TX

Cholesterol isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but when you have too much in your blood, it can lead to serious health complications. At Oza Family Care and Wellness Center in Houston, Vijay Oza, MD, conducts comprehensive physical exams tailored to you and your unique health risks. To find out if you’re at risk of high cholesterol, call Oza Family Care and Wellness Center or schedule an appointment online today.

Cholesterol Q & A

Oza Family Care and Wellness Center

What is cholesterol?

All of the cells in your body make cholesterol, and this waxy substance is also in certain foods. Cholesterol plays an essential role in building hormones, vitamin D, and other elements that support your body’s ability to digest food.

Your body has two types of cholesterol. HDL, or high-density lipoproteins, is considered to the “good” kind of cholesterol. It moves throughout your body before returning to the liver for removal.

LDL, or low-density lipoproteins, is considered the “bad” kind of cholesterol. This cholesterol remains in your blood and can combine with other substances.

If there’s too much cholesterol in your body, you have high cholesterol. Without treatment, this condition can lead to serious health complications.

What are the risks of high cholesterol?

High cholesterol can lead to plaque buildup in your blood. Plaque is a sticky substance that can attach itself to the inside of your arteries, causing them to become more narrow or blocked. Having narrow arteries leaves you vulnerable to serious complications, including:

  • Peripheral arterial disease
  • Heart disease
  • Heart attack
  • Stroke

Having other health conditions, like high blood pressure or Type 2 diabetes, in addition to high cholesterol increases your chances of developing the above health complications.

In most cases, high cholesterol doesn’t have any symptoms. To determine your cholesterol numbers and evaluate your risks of high cholesterol, it’s important to schedule annual checkups with Dr. Oza for regular testing.

What causes high cholesterol?

Certain health conditions can cause high cholesterol, but it’s usually due to an unhealthy lifestyle. Factors that contribute to high cholesterol include:

  • Smoking
  • Diet high in trans and saturated fats
  • Sedentary lifestyle or too little exercise

You also have a higher risk of high cholesterol if you have a family history of the condition, are older or overweight, or an African-American.

How is high cholesterol diagnosed and managed?

Dr. Oza measures your LDL and HDL cholesterol with a routine blood test. Oza Family Care and Wellness Center offer on-site blood draws in the office, as well as lab testing.

Based on your test results, Dr. Oza works closely with you to outline a personalized approach to improve your heart health. This generally includes lifestyle changes such as diet, exercise, and weight management. Depending on your numbers, Dr. Oza might also recommend medications that manage high cholesterol.

To learn more, call Oza Family Care and Wellness Center or schedule an appointment online today.