Diabetes Self-Management Articles

These articles cover a wide range of subjects, from the most basic aspects of diabetes care to the nitty-gritty specifics.

Links not loading properly?

Some of our pages use Portable Document Format (PDF) files, which require Adobe Acrobat Reader. To download Acrobat Reader for free, visit www.adobe.com.

Sign up for our weekly e-mail newsletter and receive a FREE GIFT! Enter your e-mail below.

Learn more

Learn more about diabetes

Links to help you learn more about diabetes.

Ask a diabetes expert
Other diabetes resources
Browse article topics

 

Triglycerides

The main storage form of fat in the body. Most are found in fat tissue, but some circulate in the bloodstream to provide fuel for the body’s cells. The triglyceride molecule is composed of three fatty acid chains attached to a glycerol molecule. The body can break down the triglycerides in the foods you eat and can also break down and recombine other molecules, such as fats, carbohydrates, and proteins, to make triglycerides.

Having high levels of triglycerides in the blood can increase a person’s risk of cardiovascular disease. Having very high triglycerides can also increase the risk of pancreatitis, or inflammation of the pancreas. Because blood triglycerides are naturally higher after a meal, they should be measured after 8–12 hours of fasting for meaningful results.

The American Diabetes Association (ADA) recommends that people with diabetes strive to get their triglyceride levels below 150 mg/dl. The following steps can help:

  • Control your blood glucose levels.
  • Limit your intake of saturated fat.
  • Get more fiber in your diet.
  • Eat more fatty fish.
  • Lose excess weight.
  • Exercise regularly.
  • Don’t smoke.
  • Drink in moderation or not at all.

If lifestyle measures alone don’t adequately control your triglyceride levels — or if your levels are 200 mg/dl or higher to begin with — your doctor may prescribe one of a class of drugs called fibric acid derivatives, such as fenofibrate (brand name TriCor and others) or gemfibrozil (Lopid). Prescription niacin (such as Niaspan) is sometimes also used to lower triglyceride levels.

The class of drugs popularly known as “statins,” which includes atorvastatin (Lipitor, Torvast), fluvastatin (Lescol), lovastatin (Mevacor, Altocor, Altoprev), pravastatin (Pravachol, Selektine, Lipostat), rosuvastatin (Crestor), and simvastatin (Zocor, Lipex), is also sometimes used, especially when a person also has high low-density lipoprotein (LDL, or “bad”) cholesterol levels.

 

 

More articles on Diabetes Definitions

 

 


Statements and opinions expressed on this Web site are those of the authors and not necessarily those of the publishers or advertisers. The information provided on this Web site should not be construed as medical instruction. Consult appropriate health-care professionals before taking action based on this information.

 

 

What to Drink?
A few years ago, in one of our very first Diabetes Flashpoints posts (“A Tax to Fight... Blog

Fasting for Blood Tests
If you've ever had your lipid profile — which measures the levels of fatty compounds... Blog

Family Awareness
Diabetes is a chronic illness, and so far, there is no cure for it. But with careful monitoring,... Article

How can a "sleep diary" help me improve my sleep quality? Get tip