Treat and Manage High Cholesterol

Key points

  • Take your medicines as directed.
  • Make healthy lifestyle changes.
  • Check your cholesterol regularly.
A doctor talking to a patient.


If you are concerned about your cholesterol, talk to your health care team about steps you can take to manage your cholesterol.

Treating high cholesterol

High cholesterol often is treated and managed by a combination of adjusting certain lifestyle factors and taking cholesterol-lowering medicines prescribed by a doctor.

Take your medicines as directed

If you take medicine to treat high low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol, heart disease, stroke, or diabetes:

  • Follow your health care team's instructions carefully.
  • Always ask your health care team questions if you don't understand something.
  • Never stop taking your medicine without first talking to your doctor, nurse, or pharmacist.

Learn more about medicines that can help lower your high cholesterol.

Make healthy lifestyle changes

You can take steps to lower your LDL cholesterol levels by making healthy changes to your lifestyle, such as choosing foods lower in saturated and trans fats and maintaining a healthy weight.

Work with your health care team

You and your health care team can work together to prevent or treat other health conditions and ensure that they don't lead to high LDL cholesterol. Discuss your treatment plan regularly, and bring a list of questions to your appointments.

Learn about the family history factors that can increase your risk for high cholesterol.

Check your cholesterol regularly

You may need to have your cholesterol levels tested at least once every 4 to 6 years if you do not have heart disease. Some people need to get their cholesterol checked more often or less often. Talk with your health care team about the timeline that is best for you.

Learn about getting your cholesterol checked.



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