Heredity Impacts High Blood Cholesterol
According to the American Heart Association (AHA), "Your blood cholesterol level is a major factor in determining your risk of developing heart disease." The AHA also states that if your family history includes heart disease in your father or brother before age 55 or heart disease in your mother or sister before age 65, your risk is increased.
High cholesterol can be the result of a number of factors, not just heredity, and it can lead to coronary heart disease. In general, a blood cholesterol level of over 200 is considered too high.
There are two types of cholesterol: LDL (Bad) cholesterol, and HDL (good) cholesterol. The AHA explains that, "Your genes control how high your LDL cholesterol is by affecting how fast LDL is made and removed from the blood. One specific form of inherited high cholesterol is familial hypercholesterolemia. Even if you do not have a specific genetic form of high cholesterol, genes play a role in affecting your LDL cholesterol level."
The term hypercholesterolemia does not make a distinction between the HDL and LDL. It is only a high level of LDL that impacts a person's health. So, it is possible to have high cholesterol, but to have a normal LDL and a high HDL and be perfectly healthy. An LDL level under 130 is good. A level under 100 is excellent.