High cholesterol (hypercholesterolemia) can be inherited, but it's often the result of unhealthy lifestyle choices, and thus preventable and treatable. A healthy diet, regular exercise and sometimes medication can go a long way toward reducing high cholesterol.
High cholesterol typically doesn't cause any symptoms. In the vast majority of cases, the only true symptoms it may cause are emergency events. For instance, a heart attack or stroke can result from the damage caused by high cholesterol over time. These events typically don’t occur until high cholesterol leads to the formation of plaque in your arteries.
Having high blood cholesterol puts you at risk of heart disease, the leading cause of death in the United States.People with high cholesterol have about twice the risk of heart disease as people with lower levels.Cholesterol is a waxy, fat-like substance. Your body needs some cholesterol, but it can build up on the walls of your arteries and lead to heart disease and stroke when you have too much in your blood.71 million American adults (33.5%) have high low-density lipoprotein (LDL), or “bad,” cholesterol.Only 1 out of every 3 adults with high LDL cholesterol has the condition under control.Less than half of adults with high LDL cholesterol get treatment.