Answers to Your Questions About Cholesterol
Like many people with diabetes, you’ve probably heard a lot about cholesterol. And you may be wondering why so many experts think that decreasing high cholesterol is important.
According to the American Diabetes Association (ADA) people with diabetes are 2 to 4 times more likely to have heart disease. Heart disease is often caused by excess cholesterol blocking the arteries around the heart. So, lowering your cholesterol actually reduces your risk for future heart disease. Two good ways to help control cholesterol are following a healthy diet and exercising regularly.
What is cholesterol?
Cholesterol is a waxy substance that occurs naturally in all parts of the body. The body needs cholesterol for digesting dietary fats, making hormones, building cell walls and other important jobs.
Why is having too much cholesterol bad?
If you have too much cholesterol in your bloodstream, the extra is deposited in arteries, including those that serve the heart. And when these arteries become narrowed or clogged by cholesterol and fat deposits, they cannot supply enough blood to the heart. The result is heart disease – the number one killer of both men and women in this country, and one of the more serious complications in people with diabetes, according to the ADA.
What’s the difference between “bad” and “good” cholesterol?
Your risk of heart disease is mainly determined by the type and quantity of lipoproteins/cholesterol in your blood. There are three types
- LDL (Low-density lipoprotein) carries the “bad” cholesterol in the blood, and is the main source of harmful fatty buildup in blood vessels.
- HDL (High-density lipoprotein) helps prevent cholesterol buildup in blood vessels by carrying the “good” cholesterol back to the liver, where it can be eliminated.
- Triglycerides are a form of fat carried through the bloodstream. Having a high triglyceride count may increase the risk of heart disease.
Can taking ACTOS (pioglitazone HCl) help my cholesterol?
Yes, ACTOS may have a positive effect on good cholesterol (HDL) and blood fats (triglycerides) and showed no consistent changes in bad cholesterol (LDL) or total cholesterol in clinical studies.
In addition, combined with your efforts at diet and exercise, ACTOS is clinically proven to lower blood sugar levels in people with type 2 diabetes.
How can I lower my blood cholesterol levels?
First, ask your doctor what steps you can take to lower your blood cholesterol. These may include:
- Changing eating habits to reduce saturated fat and cholesterol
- Being more physically active
- Maintaining your proper weight
Your doctor may also prescribe a cholesterol-lowering medication in addition to these heart healthy life habits.
(for non-pregnant adults)
*2000 Clinical Practice Recommendations, American Diabetes Association.
Copyright © 2000, Takeda Pharmaceuticals America, Inc. and Eli Lilly and Company