Information About Very High Triglycerides For People with Type 2 Diabetes At-A-Glance

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Information About Very High Triglycerides For People with Type 2 Diabetes


  • Triglycerides are a type of fat in the blood.
  • After a meal, unused calories are converted into triglycerides and distributed among fat cells for storage. Hormones then regulate the release of the triglycerides from fat cells for the body's use.
  • Problems with blood lipid levels --HDL (good cholesterol) levels that are too low and triglyceride levels that are too high - are common among people with Type 2 diabetes.

About Triglyceride Levels

  • According to the American Diabetes Association, triglyceride targets for people with diabetes are equal to or less than 150 mg/dl.
  • When triglyceride levels are greater than or equal to 500 mg/dL, they are considered very high and a serious condition.

What is Hypertriglyceridemia (HTG)?

  • Hypertriglyceridemia occurs when there is too much fat (triglyceride) in the bloodstream. High levels of blood triglycerides are often found in people who have high cholesterol levels, heart problems, are overweight or have Type 2 diabetes.

Who is at Risk of Having Very High Triglycerides

  • Individuals with Type 2 diabetes, obesity and/or high blood pressure are often at risk for very high triglycerides.
  • If you think you may be at risk for very high triglycerides, make an appointment with your doctor to discuss your health and have your triglyceride levels checked.

What People Can Do To Reduce Very High Triglycerides

  • The American Heart Association (AHA) suggests lowering triglyceride levels by exercising and eating a healthy diet, including increasing consumption of fish high in omega-3 fatty acids and decreasing consumption of meats high in saturated fats.    
  • Eat foods that specifically lower high triglycerides, such as those with avocado, flax meal, walnuts, omega-3 rich eggs, and cold water marine fish, says Dr. John La Puma, a board-certified physician specialist in internal medicine and professionally trained chef. Avoid foods that raise triglycerides, such as starchy and sugary processed foods, alcohol, meats, cheeses and most breaded and deep-fried foods, which are high in trans fats. For free healthy easy quick recipes, visit Dr. La Puma at or
  • Some people may need a prescription medication in addition to diet to lower very high triglycerides. LOVAZA (omega-3 acid ethyl esters) is an FDA-approved, prescription medication made from omega-3 fish oil that is proven, along with a healthy diet, to reduce very high triglycerides. Visit for more information and additional resources.

Important Safety Information for LOVAZA (omega-3-acid ethyl esters)

  • LOVAZA, along with diet, helps to lower very high triglyceride levels.
  • Tell your doctor if you are allergic to fish. LOVAZA may not be right for you.
  • Talk to your doctor about any medications you are taking, especially those that may increase your risk of bleeding.
  • Possible side effects include burping, infection, flu-like symptoms and upset stomach.

How Supplied: 1g capsules

Visit for Patient Information, Full Prescribing Information and additional resources regarding very high triglycerides.

This at-a-glance sheet is provided by GlaxoSmithKline

GlaxoSmithKline - One of the world's leading research-based pharmaceutical and healthcare companies - is committed to improving the quality of human life by enabling people to do more, feel better and live longer. For further information please visit


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Bernadette King
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