High Blood Cholesterol

Frequently Asked Questions

21. What is TLC?

TLC stands for Therapeutic Lifestyle Changes. It is a set of lifestyle changes that can help you lower your LDL cholesterol. TLC has three main parts: a cholesterol-lowering diet, weight management, and physical activity.

The TLC Diet recommends

  • reducing the amount of saturated fat, trans fat, and cholesterol you eat.
  • eating only enough calories to achieve or maintain a healthy weight.
  • increasing the soluble fiber in your diet by eating foods such as oatmeal, kidney beans, and apples.
  • adding cholesterol-lowering foods, such as juices or margarines that contain plant sterols or stanols that lower cholesterol.

Weight management is an important part of TLC. Losing weight if you are overweight can help lower LDL cholesterol. Weight management is especially important for people who have a group of risk factors that includes high triglyceride and/or low HDL levels, being overweight, and having too large a waist. Too large a waist is defined as a waist measurement of 40 inches or more for men and 35 inches or more for women.

Physical activity is another important part of TLC. Regular physical activity is recommended for everyone. It can help raise HDL levels and lower LDL levels. It is especially important for people with high triglyceride and/or low HDL levels who are overweight and/or have a large waist measurement.