What Is a Normal Cholesterol Range?

A normal cholesterol range is somewhere between 70 and 130 for LDL or bad cholesterol. A normal, healthy total cholesterol score needs to be under 200. HDL cholesterol tends to be to 1/3rd or 1/4th of your total cholesterol score and (in general) the higher this number, the better condition your arterial system is in.

Normal Cholesterol Levels

Below is a list of the normal cholesterol levels for your average person. Any number above the first number posted below tends to be getting into the danger area, often termed “borderline”. Any number above the second number posted in each column is considered “high” or “low” according to standard conditions and is therefore dangerous. I’ve posted a third number that is considered in the “very high” or “very low” range. I’ll also explain what each of the types of cholesterol are.


  • LDL Cholesterol (bad) – 130 – 170 – 200
  • HDL Cholesterol (good) – 65 – 40
  • Total Cholesterol – 200 – 250 – 290
  • Triglycerides – 150 – 225 – 525


Low Density Cholesterol – The Bad Cholesterol

“Bad cholesterol” is low-density cholesterol, because this form of litoprotein tends to collect on your arteries’ inner walls. When cholesterol starts to build up, your arteries begin to clog up and harden somewhat, a condition called artherosclerosis. The clogging and hardening makes it harder for your heart to pump blood through your body, in much the same way that a snag or pinching of a water hose slows the flow of water through the hose.

When your heart pumps harder than it’s supposed to, it begin to enlarge, like any other muscle does that’s worked hard. Unfortunately, unlike biceps, an enlarging heart has thinner walls and is therefore more likely to break down and create a heart attack. Meanwhile, the clogged arteries can eventually restrict to a point that blood no longer makes it to your heart at all. In either case, you have severe health problems on the way, because you’re more likely to have a stroke or heart attack.

It’s a good idea to keep the levels of your low density litoprotein low, which lowers your chances of having heart-related conditions. You do this by eating fruits and vegetables instead of fried foods and fast foods. When you quit smoking, this also helps your prospects, because smoking causes your arteries to harden, as well.

High Density Cholesterol – The Good Cholesterol

Roughly 1/4th of your cholesterol is high density litoprotein. There is evidence that the high density cholesterol carries away the cholersterol buildup and plaque that forms in your arteries, cleaning out your arterial system. When this happens, the excess cholesterol is carried off to your liver and eventually passed out of your body. Because HDL performs this role, it is called good cholesterol.

Combined Cholesterol Levels

When you add up the LDL and HDL measurements in your blood, this is your total or combined cholesterol level. Any total cholesterol above 200 is considered to be getting into the danger zone. Anything over 250 is high or very high, and puts you at an even higher threat of stroke or heart attack.

Triglycerides and Cholesterol Range

Your body produces a form of fat called tryglyceride or TAG. Studies link high levels of triglycerides with atherosclerosis, though the relationship has not been fully established. There appears to be an inverse relationship between triglycerides and the ratio between HDL and LDL in your body. The higher your triglyceride count, the lower your percentage of HDL, it would seem.

In any case, have a high “tag” count appears to increase your risk of having a stroke or a heart condition. You might find the addition of triglyceride number just confuses your understanding of the dilemma you face. If so, worry only about your cholesterol levels at the moment, but understand that this figure is out there and illuminates what you’re up against.

Cholesterol Scores in the Normal Range

Remember that having a normal cholesterol score is just one part of the full picture of your health. Know your blood pressure levels.

Keep track of your weight once a week, if not every day. (Some suggest measuring once a week, but I personally believe weighing yourself every day, while it contains a lot of fluctuation, helps with accountability.) Get thirty minutes of moderate exercise a day, no matter what your diet is. Do these things and visit your doctor regularly, and see whether you can lower your cholesterol levels.