Cholesterol And Lipid Disorders

Valley Endocrine

Endocrinologists located in Fresno, CA

You may be surprised to learn that an endocrine disorder, not your diet, is causing your abnormal cholesterol readings. Paul Norwood, MD, can determine whether your endocrine system needs some help managing your cholesterol. Dr. Norwood leads the team at Valley Endocrine in Fresno, California, and is well respected for his skills and experience as an endocrinologist and a patient-first approach to medicine. You’ll quickly recognize that he truly cares about your health and values you as a person. Call Valley Endocrine today or schedule online to book your visit.

Cholesterol and Lipid Disorders Q & A

Valley Endocrine

What are lipids and cholesterol?

Lipids are fats circulating in your blood. Cholesterol is a type of lipid that’s an essential component of cell membranes. Your body also uses cholesterol to make vitamin D and various hormones, including estrogen, testosterone, and cortisol. You can produce all the cholesterol you need without ever taking a bite of food, but your body also obtains cholesterol from your diet.

Triglycerides are another type of lipid that’s important to your health. These are the fats your body creates and stores in fat cells when you eat more than you need in a day. Hormones in your bloodstream trigger these cells to release their stored fat when your body requires more fuel than you’re consuming, which can result in weight loss.

What about good versus bad cholesterol?

Cholesterol needs transportation to move through your bloodstream. So, it bonds with certain proteins (lipoproteins) to get around. You may have heard that good cholesterol (HDL), which is carried by high-density lipoproteins, is good because it’s transported to your liver for processing and eventually removed from your body.

Bad cholesterol (LDL) is transported through your bloodstream by low-density lipoproteins. These transporters are stickier than their high-density siblings. They can clump together and stick to blood vessel walls. This eventually narrows your arteries, reduces vital blood flow, and leads to heart attacks, strokes, and other serious health conditions.

How does the endocrine system affect cholesterol and lipids?

Dyslipidemia, which is an abnormal level of cholesterol and other lipids or fats in the blood, is often directly linked to many common endocrine disorders. Some of which are, in fact, the most common cause of lipid and cholesterol disorders.

Endocrine disorders that can affect your lipid and cholesterol levels include:

  • Diabetes
  • Hypothyroidism (low levels of thyroid hormone)
  • Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS)
  • Cushing’s disease

Interestingly, hyperthyroidism (high levels of thyroid hormones) is often linked to lower cholesterol levels.

Treatment that effectively manages or reverses these and other endocrine issues can bring your lipids and cholesterol back to normal levels. Hormone replacement therapy, for instance, is often used to treat hypothyroidism. When thyroid hormone levels return to normal, lipid levels often also come down.

Make an appointment at Valley Endocrine today for an evaluation of your endocrine health and how it may be impacting your lipids. Give the office a call or schedule your visit online.