Charts outlining general cholesterol level guidelines can be found on the American Heart Association website. Although these tables are a useful reference, it is important to always discuss your personal results with your health care professional in order to receive advice tailored to your individual needs.
In the United States, the unit of measure for cholesterol is milligram per deciliter. According to the American Heart Association, total cholesterol less than 200 is considered to be desirable. Individuals with total cholesterol ranging from 200 to 239 are at borderline-high risk of developing heart disease, while those with total cholesterol 240 and above are considered to be at very high risk.
Low-density lipoprotein, or LDL, cholesterol is classified as follows: less than 100 is desirable; 100 to 129 is near optimal/above optimal; 130 to 159 is borderline high; 160 to 189 is high risk; 190 and above is very high risk.
High-density lipoprotein, or HDL, cholesterol at greater than 60 provides some protection against heart disease. Men with HDL less than 40, and women with HDL less than 50 have a major risk factor for developing heart disease.
Triglyceride levels less than 150 are considered to be desirable. Individuals with triglyceride levels ranging from 150 to 199 are at borderline-high risk for developing heart disease, individuals with levels ranging from 200 to 499 are at high risk, and individuals with triglyceride levels at 500 or above are at very high risk.