What Women Should Know About High Triglycerides

Medically Reviewed by Carol DerSarkissian, MD on May 06, 2023

Anyone can develop high levels of triglycerides, a type of blood fat, but certain factors can make them likelier in women.

Women are more likely to get high triglycerides if they:

There are also causes of high triglycerides that impact both women and men. You're more likely to have high triglycerides if you are overweight, don't exercise, have diabetes, have increased waist circumference, or have a family history of high triglycerides. That's true for men and women alike. Hypothyroidism, lupus, and treatment with corticosteroids can also raise triglyceride levels.

Your lifestyle can make a big difference in your triglyceride levels.

Ask your doctor what lifestyle changes you should make, the best ways to do that, and how long it will take to make a difference in your triglyceride levels.

Getting more exercise, losing extra weight, and upgrading your diet -- such as avoiding processed and sugary foods -- are likely to be on your to-do list.

You should also ask your doctor whether any of your medications (such as birth control pills or hormone replacement) are linked to your high triglycerides. If so, your doctor will probably recommend changing your prescription.

If those changes aren't enough, your doctor may prescribe medications such as niacin, statins, fibrates, and omega-3 fatty acids. Even so, lifestyle changes will be part of the plan to lower your triglycerides for good.

Show Sources


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Michael McDermott MD, director, Endocrinology and Diabetes Practice, University of Colorado Hospital.

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Northwestern University: "Overview of Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS)."

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