"Triglycerides are as tied to heart disease as LDL. There are two kinds of LDL: the large, buoyant variety that is not associated with heart disease, and the small, dense variety, which is definitely associated with heart disease. The best way to determine which LDL you predominantly have is by looking at your triglycerides level. High LDL and high triglycerides mean you have a preponderance of Small LDL-P, insulin resistance, and metabolic syndrome. That is what I am looking for when I run a cholesterol panel."
"I look for several things. I like to see a good, solid HDL number that is at least 10 points higher than what most labs consider 'normal' values. Triglycerides should be under 150; I don't believe as strictly that triglycerides must be below your HDL number as long as they are below 150. And finally, I check the fasting glucose and hemoglobin A1c."