Basic Fasting Lipid Panel
Total blood cholesterol is a measure of the cholesterol components LDL (low-density lipoprotein) cholesterol, HDL (high-density lipoprotein) cholesterol, and VLDL (very low-density lipoprotein, which is the triglyceride-carrying component of lipids).
LDL cholesterol (L=lousy)
LDL (low density-lipoprotein) cholesterol is also called “bad” cholesterol. LDL can build up on the walls of your arteries and increase your chances of getting heart disease.
HDL cholesterol (H=happy)
HDL (high-density lipoprotein) cholesterol is also called “good” cholesterol. HDL protects against heart disease by taking the bad cholesterol out of your blood and keeping it from building up in your arteries.
Triglycerides (3 fatty acids hooked together)
Triglycerides are the chemical form in which most fat exists in food and the body. Triglycerides are mostly carried in VLDL and chylomicrons. VLDL comes from the liver and also has cholesterol. Chylomicrons come from dietary fat. The cholesterol/HDL ratio (attempts to look at the relative amount of HDL).
Non-HDL cholesterol is the total amount of LDL and VLDL (the two categories of bad cholesterol). LDL transports cholesterol to the body, while VLDL transports mainly triglycerides in the blood stream.