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Heart Health

The Skinny on High Cholesterol

Cholesterol image courtesy of Flickr/barkbud
After a physical examination, a man finds out his cholesterol is slightly high. The doctor tells him that it is not yet bad enough to require medication, but tells him to do at least 15 minutes of “heavy breathing exercise” a day. Feeling pretty lucky, the man goes home and tells his wife suggestively how she can help him get his exercise. She promptly gets on the phone and enrolls him in a kickboxing class. Feeling rejected, the man explains to her that he had something else in mind to help him get his exercise. She replies back that the doctor said, “it has to last at least fifteen minutes!” Although humorous, this short anecdote highlights a number of truths about cholesterol. First, cholesterol levels rise naturally over time and cholesterol affects almost everyone at some point in their lives. In fact, most doctors recommend that you should have your cholesterol levels checked at least once every five years starting at just 20 years old. For men aged 35, ...

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