How long does it take to lower cholesterol?


Quick Answer

Prescription cholesterol-lowering drugs may help to decrease cholesterol levels in as little as one month. Additionally, lowering the body's triglyceride levels may aid in reducing cholesterol rates within a few months or less, according to Dr. Arthur Agatston for Everyday Health.

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Full Answer

Triglycerides are fats located in the blood plasma; they have a direct effect on lowering the body's total cholesterol levels, explains Mayo Clinic. The length of time it takes to lower cholesterol levels depends on several different factors, including whether it is a person's LDL or HDL level that is elevated and what method he is using to reduce high cholesterol, according to Dr. Agatston.

Typically, the rate of overall cholesterol reduction varies from person to person. Total cholesterol is a combination of HDL, or good cholesterol, and LDL, or bad cholesterol, levels, notes Dr. Agatston. It is a good idea to monitor both HDL and LDL levels, although high cholesterol may take longer to decrease if triglyceride levels are not elevated. Lifestyle changes with diet and exercise may also affect cholesterol rate. However, the effects of these types of changes may take a while to experience. It is always a good idea to consult a physician when attempting to make major changes to personal health care and nutrition.

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