High cholesterol does not cause symptoms, the National Cholesterol Education Program points out. You don’t know you have high cholesterol until you get a blood cholesterol test from your health care provider. High cholesterol levels can lead to heart disease, which can cause symptoms. Angina, a symptom of heart disease, can result in chest pain, for example. Sweating, pain and fatigue may signal heart disease or even heart attack. You can lower your risk for problems through diet and medicine when you know you have high cholesterol.
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Pay Attention to Symptoms
Sweating, pain and fatigue should concern you even if a recent cholesterol test showed you have normal levels. Cholesterol levels can change. Pain symptoms may occur in your legs and arms if too much cholesterol has clogged arteries. Fatigue or sweating could mean your heart does not have enough oxygen-rich blood. See your doctor if these symptoms occur, especially when you have high cholesterol.
Decreased Blood Flow
Cholesterol buildup in the bloodstream can cause narrowing of the arteries. This slows blood flow to the heart, robbing the heart of oxygen-rich blood and resulting in heart disease. Heart attack or stroke can occur when the arteries become completely blocked. Excess amounts of LDL cholesterol, known as the “bad” cholesterol, form plaque on the inner walls of the arteries to interfere with blood flow.
Excess weight can cause sweating, pain and fatigue, especially when participating in physical activities. Being overweight can also contribute to high cholesterol, according to MayoClinic.com. Eating heart-healthy foods and exercising more can reduce weight and normalize your cholesterol levels. Get an OK from your doctor during a checkup to participate in an exercise program. Try to exercise 30 to 60 minutes a day. You can take brisk walks, run, ride your bike, swim laps or join an exercise group. Your doctor can also provide dietary advice to reduce weight.
A diet to maintain healthy weight and control your cholesterol may include reducing your intake of saturated fat and eliminated trans fat. Saturated fat, found in meat, poultry, fish and dairy products, can raise LDL cholesterol in the blood. You can reduce fat intake by consuming lean meat, skinless poultry and low-fat or nonfat dairy products. You might find trans fat, made from hydrogenated oils, in processed snacks and fried foods in restaurants. Trans fat raises LDL cholesterol, and also lowers healthy HDL cholesterol, which helps clear away excess cholesterol in the bloodstream. Many manufacturers are doing away with trans fat in foods because of health concerns. Check food labels for no trans fat. Consume more fruits, vegetables and whole grains to maintain healthy cholesterol levels. If food and exercise alone do not lower your cholesterol enough, doctors can prescribe cholesterol-lowering medication.