Hyperlipidemia – Hypertriglyceridemia
The human body contains two types of blood lipids which are cholesterol and triglycerides. Triglycerides are a form of fat produced in our body and carried in blood stream. Hypertriglyceridemia, is a condition of high level of triglycerides in the blood defined >150 mg/dL (1.7 mmol/L). When the level of triglycerides rises, it sticks to the walls of the arteries, thus accumulates and forms layers of plaque that thicken with time and cause damage to the artery walls. These layers can also lead to stenosis and blockage of small arteries causing improper blood flow to the body organs.
In some cases, plaque can separate from the walls of the arteries and move through the bloodstream to another area of the artery or to a different artery and cause partial or complete obstruction to the artery (usually to the narrow arteries such as coronary arteries that supply blood to the heart muscle). Therefore, hypertriglyceridemia is one of the risk factors for many cardiovascular disease and even pancreatitis.
Causes for Hyperlipidemia – Hypertriglyceridemia
- High consumption of refined carbohydrates.
- Overweight and obesity is a major cause for hyperlipidemia.
- Excessive alcohol consumption in addition to smoking.
- Non- healthy diet that contains foods from an animal source, and foods that have high content of cholesterol, saturated fat, and also processed carbohydrates.
- Lack of physical activity and stress.
- Certain illnesses such as diabetes, renal failure, hypothyroidism, obstruction of bile duct and others.
- Certain medications such as beta blockers and some diuretics may cause hyperlipidemia.
Often there are no obvious symptoms for Hypertriglyceridemia and usually the first symptom is a heart attack or a stroke. However symptoms such as dizziness, confusion, as well as disturbances in blood flow or difficulty in breathing after an easy effort, certainly requires having a blood test.