Hypolipidemic Agents: The Benefits and Risk
Hypolipidemic agents, also known as anti-hyperlipidemic agents, are drugs specifically prescribed to treat high triglycerides and other lipids in the blood. Triglycerides are the type of fat most associated with heart disease, stroke and other health problems, and high levels can increase the risk for developing atherosclerosis and other cardiovascular conditions.
If you’ve been prescribed a hypolipidemic agent to lower your triglycerides, you may be wondering what the potential benefits and risks of taking this medication are. Below, we look at the potential benefits, risks and side effects of hypolipidemic agents.
Potential Benefits of Hypolipidemic Agents
When taken as directed, hypolipidemic agents can reduce levels of low-density lipoprotein (LDL), also known as “bad” cholesterol, while increasing levels of high-density lipoprotein (HDL), also known as “good” cholesterol. This can reduce the risk of heart disease, stroke, and other cardiovascular events.
Additionally, hypolipidemic drugs can help to stabilize existing plaque deposits, and reduce inflammation within the walls of the arteries. As a result, these medications can help to lower the risk of stroke, heart attack and other cardiovascular conditions.
Risks and Side Effects of Hypolipidemic Agents
As with any medications, hypolipidemic agents can cause side effects and may interact with other medications. Generally, the most common side effects of these drugs includes constipation, diarrhea, fatigue, and nausea. Consumers should inform their doctor if experiencing any side effects or complications after taking these medications.
In terms of possible interactions with other medications, those taking hypolipidemic agents should inform their doctor of any other medications or supplements they’re currently taking. It is generally recommended to carefully read the label of any supplements or over-the-counter medications, as some ingredients may interact with certain hypolipidemic agents.
The Significance of a Healthful Diet and Exercise Regimen
Taking hypolipidemic agents as directed is generally considered safe, but following a healthful diet and exercise regimen can improve the efficacy of these medications. It’s important to limit the amount of trans fats and saturated fats consumed, as these fats can increase the risk of developing heart disease, stroke, and other conditions.
Incorporating activities like walking or cycling into your routine can help to reduce triglyceride levels and improve overall heart health. Exercising at least 30 minutes per day, four to five times a week, can help to maintain healthier levels of triglycerides, cholesterol and other lipids in the blood.
It’s also essential to speak with your doctor or healthcare professional prior to taking hypolipidemic agents, as these drugs may interact with certain medications and supplements. Ultimately, observing a healthful diet and exercise routine in combination with prescribed medications can help to improve overall heart health.