A normal triglyceride level is less than 150 mg/dL. The May 2001 guidelines from the National Cholesterol Education Program say that high triglyceride levels put you at risk for developing heart disease. High levels are also often linked with the following:
- Other risk factors for heart disease. This includes diabetes.
- A decrease in the size of LDL packages. These smaller, denser packages are called VLDL for very-low-density lipoprotein. They may contribute to a faster buildup of plaque in your arteries.
In addition, a triglyceride level over 500 mg/dL can increase your risk for developing inflammation of the pancreas, called pancreatitis. This painful condition requires hospitalization.