cho·​les·​ter·​ol | \ kə-ˈle-stə-ˌrōl How to pronounce cholesterol (audio) , -ˌrȯl\

Definition of cholesterol

: a steroid alcohol C27H45OH that is present in animal cells and body fluids, regulates membrane fluidity, and functions as a precursor molecule in various metabolic pathways and as a constituent of LDL may cause atherosclerosis — compare bad cholesterol, good cholesterol

Examples of cholesterol in a Sentence

Did your doctor check your cholesterol?

Recent Examples on the Web

Eggs may not be so good for you after all, according to a large new study published Friday that links higher consumption of dietary cholesterol with cardiovascular disease and death. Betsy Mckay, WSJ, "Study Links Eggs to Higher Cholesterol and Risk of Heart Disease," 15 Mar. 2019 Most humans will be at higher risk of heart attacks when there’s more LDL cholesterol in their blood; that’s the basic biology. Brian Resnick, Vox, "Genetics has learned a ton — mostly about white people. That’s a problem.," 27 Oct. 2018 Bobrovskiy's fossil was preserved to the extent that is still contained molecules of cholesterol. David Grossman, Popular Mechanics, "Fat Molecules Confirm this 558 Million-Year-Old Blob Was One of Earth's First Animals," 21 Sep. 2018 Nutrition | Per serving (based on 4): 129 calories; 3g fat; no saturated fat; no cholesterol; 3g protein; 26g carbohydrate; 20g sugar; 5g fiber; no sodium; 83mg calcium. Daniel Neman, sacbee, "Artistry, flavor blends are marks of Moroccan," 10 July 2018 Probably the most cosmopolitan way to quadruple-team your cholesterol count. Steve Rosenbloom,, "Does ESPN’s Chauncey Billups know how much he pantsed the Bulls?," 22 June 2018 That’s key because every 1% reduction in cholesterol lowers the risk of heart disease by 2%., "7 Health Benefits of Cherries," 13 June 2018 In addition, there are medications to lower blood pressure and cholesterol that are relatively inexpensive. Abigail Higgins, Vox, "Heart disease used to be an ailment of the rich. But it’s now striking the world’s poor.," 15 Oct. 2018 For Pfizer, those drugs include Viagra, blood pressure pill Norvasc and high-cholesterol pill Lipitor, which had reigned as the world’s top-selling drug for nearly a decade. Linda A. Johnson, The Seattle Times, "Drugmaker Pfizer’s CEO Read to be replaced by COO Bourla," 1 Oct. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'cholesterol.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of cholesterol

1894, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for cholesterol

International Scientific Vocabulary, from chol- + Greek stereos solid

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Last Updated

23 Mar 2019

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Time Traveler for cholesterol

The first known use of cholesterol was in 1894

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English Language Learners Definition of cholesterol

: a substance that is found in the bodies of people and animals


cho·​les·​ter·​ol | \ kə-ˈles-tə-ˌrōl, -ˌrȯl How to pronounce cholesterol (audio) \

Medical Definition of cholesterol

: a steroid alcohol C27H45OH that is present in animal cells and body fluids, regulates membrane fluidity, functions as a precursor molecule in various metabolic pathways, and as a constituent of LDL may cause atherosclerosis Cholesterol is a lipid present in the cell membrane and subcellular organelles of tissues throughout the body. … In addition, cholesterol serves as the building block for all steroid hormones including cortisol, aldosterone, estrogen, and testosterone.— Sarah de Ferranti and David S. Ludwig, The New England Journal of Medicine, 25 Sept. 2008 … the drug reduces the production of cholesterol in the liver, decreasing the amount of artery-clogging cholesterol circulating in the bloodstream.Newsweek, 8 Dec. 1986

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More from Merriam-Webster on cholesterol

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with cholesterol

Spanish Central: Translation of cholesterol

Nglish: Translation of cholesterol for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of cholesterol for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about cholesterol

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a shady place in a garden or forest

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