Do you have high blood pressure? Do you have a family history of coronary artery disease before the age of 65? Are you a smoker? Overweight? Do you have coronary artery disease or problems with the arteries in your neck, legs or the aorta? Presence of one or more of these risks makes it even more imperative to monitor cholesterol levels. Even if you are not in the high-risk category it's still important to know your numbers and what they mean.