Getting Life Insurance with High Cholesterol


You wanna know the number one reason healthy people don’t qualify for better life insurance rates?

It’s your cholesterol levels.

Getting life insurance with high cholesterol at a great rate is possible, if you apply to the right company.

If you have high cholesterol and need life insurance, we’ve got some great news for you…

There are quality insurance companies that have much more liberal cholesterol guidelines compared to the others (see master list down below).

What is considered high cholesterol for life insurance?

That depends…

Your total cholesterol and HDL (good) cholesterol are what life insurance companies are most interested in.

If you have a cardiac or cardiovascular issue, type 1 or type 2 diabetes or other health issues, then insurance companies may take a closer look at your LDL and triglycerides in addition to the total and HDL.

While a total cholesterol level of 200 mg/dL or less and an HDL of 60 mg/dL or higher is considered optimal.

A 300 total cholesterol level for Preferred Plus rate

The more aggressive insurance companies will allow you to have up to a 300 total cholesterol to qualify for their “Preferred Plus” rate as long as your HDL cholesterol is good.

The cholesterol/HDL ratio is determined by dividing your total cholesterol by your HDL cholesterol.

Most insurance companies will offer you the following rates as long as your cholesterol/HDL ratio does not exceed:

4.5 or 5.0 for Preferred Plus
5.5 to 6.0 for Preferred
6.5 to 7.0 for Regular Plus
7.5 to 8.0 for Regular
8.1 and higher- Possible Table 2 to decline (must shop for individual consideration)

Sometimes it takes a little fight to get better offer

We have been able to negotiate to get otherwise healthy people exception on the above…

But we gotta put the pressure on.

For example, we’ve helped others get preferred plus rates even when cholesterol/HDL ratio was as high as 5.9…

Or preferred rates for cholesterol/HDL ratio as high as 6.9.

If your overall health is pretty good, we’ll be more likely to get you an exception.

Our system can’t be beat!


Acceptable Cholesterol Levels for Life Insurance

Let’s take a look at some of the most competitive life insurance companies guidelines on maximum total cholesterol and cholesterol/HDL ratio to qualify for Preferred Plus, Preferred, Regular Plus and Regular rates:

                                                Preferred Plus     Preferred     Regular Plus    Regular
AAA (all ages)                              325/4.5             325/5.5         325/6.5            325/7.5
Lincoln National (age 70+)          300/5.5             300/7.0           n/a                   n/a
Lincoln National (age 0-69)         300/5.0             300/6.0           n/a                   n/a
North American (ages 71+)         300/5.5             300/6.5           n/a                   n/a
North American (ages 0-70)        300/5.0             300/6.0           n/a                   n/a
Prudential (all ages)                     300/5.0             300/6.0         300/7.0              n/a
United of Omaha (all ages)          300/5.0             300/6.0         300/7.0              n/a
AXA (all ages)                               300/5.0             300/5.5         300/6.0              n/a
SBLI (males only)                         300/5.0             300/5.5         300/6.5           300/7.0
SBLI (females only)                      300/4.5             300/5.0         300/6.0           300/7.0
American National (ages 61+)     300/5.0             300/5.5         300/6.0              n/a
American National (ages 0-60)    300/4.5             300/5.5         300/6.0              n/a
Banner Life (all ages)                   300/4.5             300/5.5         300/6.5           300/8.0
Pacific Life (males only)               300/4.5            300/5.5         300/6.5           300/7.5
Pacific Life (females only)            300/4.0            300/5.0         300/6.0           300/7.0
Symetra Life (all ages)                  300/4.5            300/5.5         300/6.5              n/a
American General/AIG (all ages)  300/4.5            300/5.5        300/6.5           300/6.5
American General/AIG (all ages)  215/5.0            245/6.0        260/7.0           260/7.0
Global Atlantic (ages 71+)             280/5.5            300/6.5           n/a                  n/a
Global Atlantic (ages 0-70)            260/5.0            270/6.0        270/6.5              n/a
New York Life (all ages)                 275/4.5            300/6.0        300/6.5            na/7.0
Protective Life (all ages)                275/4.5            275/5.5           n/a                  n/a
Nationwide (ages 71+)                   270/4.5            280/6.5           n/a                  n/a
Nationwide (ages 18-70)                240/4.5            250/5.5           n/a                  n/a
Principal (ages 65-85)                    260/5.0            280/6.0        300/7.0              n/a
Principal (ages 20-64)                    240/4.5            270/5.5        300/6.5              n/a
National Life (ages 65+)                 260/5.0            280/6.0        300/7.0              n/a
National Life (ages 18-64)              260/4.5            280/5.5        300/6.5              n/a
Security Mutual (ages 66+)            250/5.5            260/6.0        270/7.0              n/a
Security Mutual (ages 41-65)         240/5.0            250/5.5        260/6.5              n/a
Ameritas (all ages)                         250/5.0             270/5.5        285/6.5              n/a
Zurich Life (ages 51+)                    240/5.5             270/6.0        280/6.5              n/a
Zurich Life (ages 0-50)                   220/5.0             250/5.5        280/6.5              n/a
Minnesota Life (all ages)               240/5.0             260/6.0        300/7.0              n/a
Brighthouse/Met (ages 70+)          240/5.0             300/5.0        300/7.0              n/a
Brighthouse/Met (ages 55-69)       230/4.5             280/5.0        300/6.0              n/a
Brighthouse/Met (ages 0-54)         220/4.5             240/5.0        280/5.5              n/a
Cincinnati Life (all ages)                240/4.5             250/5.0        280/6.0              n/a
Transamerica (ages 71+)               230/5.5              260/6.0       300/6.7            na/7.5
Transamerica (ages 0-70)              230/5.0              260/5.5       300/6.2            na/7.0
Penn Mutual (ages 61+)                 230/5.0              270/6.0       290/6.5              n/a
Penn Mutual (ages 0-60)                220/4.5              260/5.5       280/6.0              n/a
Columbus Life (all ages)               230/5.0              250/6.0        260/6.5           290/7.0
Illinois Mutual (all ages)                220/5.0              250/6.0        280/7.5              n/a               

Ohio National (all ages)                 220/5.0              240/5.5       260/6.0              n/a
Foresters Financial (all ages)       220/4.5              230/5.0        260/6.5              n/a
Haven Life (ages 46+)                    220/4.5                 n/a               n/a                 n/a
Assurity Life (all ages)                   210/4.5              250/5.0           n/a                 n/a
State Farm (all ages)                      175/na               200/na        220/na             250/na      


The “Total View” Approach

Companies Like John Hancock and Mass Mutual (not Haven), take the “total view” approach.

What this means is that instead of focusing on your exact cholesterol levels, they’ll make an offer using a lot of different criteria…

like blood pressure, cholesterol, height/weight, blood glucose, etc.

So if you’re otherwise healthy, but cholesterol is or has been high in the past, you may want to look at John Hancock or Mass Mutual if they’re competitive for you.   

Finding Best Insurance for High Cholesterol

As you can see from above, the guidelines can vary greatly from company to company…

And depending on your gender and age bracket.

Keep in mind also, cholesterol levels will fluctuate based on diet and exercise.

If you eat bacon and eggs for breakfast, a philly cheese steak every day for lunch and then have blood test, chances are your cholesterol won’t be good. 

The bait and switch is alive and well

Some companies that show up with lowest rates in any life insurance comparison have “teaser rates”…

In other words, these companies know you probably won’t qualify for best rates…usually due to cholesterol. 

Is this the bait and switch scam, to show you low rate and approve you for higher?

Probably, but…

It may not matter now that we’re providing you with all of the competitive companies cholesterol guidelines above. 

What insurance companies should you avoid 

If you haven’t had a blood test in a while and have no idea what your cholesterol levels may be, we’d recommend avoiding State Farm, Assurity Life, Haven Life, Foresters and the others on the lower portion of the master list above…

This way you’re not unpleasantly surprised if your offer comes back higher than expected due to cholesterol.

Remember also, negotiation is always possible…

We’ve helped hundred’s of people like you qualify for better rates even when their cholesterol was above the guidelines.


What To Do if Denied Life Insurance Due to High Cholesterol? 

If your cholesterol is over 300 or cholesterol/HDL ratio is above 8.0, you may very well be declined or “rated” (and charged an additional premium).

If you’ve had an abnormally high reading on insurance exam, we’ll recommend you have a new blood test.

Then we’ll get the insurance company (or another one) to make you a better offer if cholesterol has improved.

Just remember the longer you fast and longer you can eat a low saturated fat/low cholesterol diet prior to your blood test, the better your cholesterol levels should be.

How to lower cholesterol if diet and exercise don’t work?

There are natural remedies like red yeast rice and plant sterols to help lower cholesterol. 

Not only that, but most insurance companies don’t care if you take prescription medication to lower your cholesterol…

They just want your cholesterol to be well controlled. 

As soon as your cholesterol levels are good, with or without medication, you could qualify for a better rate!!

Just keep in mind that any company may require more than one blood test over a period of time to verify you’re maintaining good levels before making you a better offer…especially if you just started taking prescription medication.


Low Cholesterol Life Insurance

While much less of an issue, we’ve seen insurance companies decline or charge higher rates for having cholesterol that is too low.

Cholesterol under 120 mg/dL is considered too low and has caused an issue on past cases we’ve shopped…

I’ve never heard of cholesterol being too low

When we’ve tried to negotiate for better offers for abnormally low cholesterol, we’ve been told the issues are possible malnutrition, potential for mental health issues and possible link to increase risk of some cancers.

So this is a real concern for life insurance companies.

If you have a history of low cholesterol, you may want to eat the bacon and eggs or cheese steaks for a few days prior to your blood test, just to be safe.

Bottom Line on Getting Life Insurance with Abnormal Cholesterol

Having “middle of the road” cholesterol levels is best for life insurance underwriting…not too low and not too high.  

If you’ve been offered a higher life insurance rate in past due to cholesterol or if you’d like to apply for the first time, just keep this cholesterol information in mind as it could make or break your case.   

You may be better off applying to companies like AAA, Lincoln National, NACOLAH, Prudential, United of Omaha, AXA, ANICO…


Life insurance for high cholesterol quotes

If you’d like to see some instant insurance quotes, complete the “Instant Life Insurance Quotes” form on the right hand side of this page.  

Keep in mind that cholesterol levels are only one of many criteria that all life insurance companies will take into consideration.

If you’d like an accurate quote, just click the “Accurate Cholesterol Insurance Quote” link above and we’ll research exactly which insurance companies will make you best offer.

Please also feel free to call us at 1-800-380-3533 or click here to email us if you have any questions or if you need more information. 

We’ll give you more tips on how to get the best cholesterol reading and results from your insurance exam, if you decide to apply.

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