You’ve probably heard and read (again and again) about the importance of getting a cholesterol blood test to make sure your cholesterol levels are within a healthy range. Ignoring this advice can cause problems down the line. Over time, cholesterol can get out of hand and cause serious health conditions such as heart disease and stroke if left untreated.
Getting regular cholesterol tests and understanding your cholesterol numbers can help you prevent future complications from high cholesterol. But it’s one thing to take the test, it’s another thing to fully understand the results and know what the healthy cholesterol levels are. “Good” cholesterol – “bad” cholesterol, what does it all mean? It can be a bit confusing.
In this article, we’ll give you helpful tips on how to decode your cholesterol blood test results, so you know exactly where you stand.
The Importance of Knowing Your Cholesterol Levels
Knowing your cholesterol numbers is important because it helps you understand if you are at risk of heart disease. Cholesterol is a type of lipid (fat) that is integral for your body to properly perform many different functions. However, when you have too much of it in your body it can be harmful over time.
High cholesterol goes unnoticed in most people because there are no symptoms until it develops into a serious condition such as heart disease. Blood tests can detect high cholesterol early, giving you an opportunity to start making healthy lifestyle changes to manage your cholesterol. That’s why it’s so important to get cholesterol blood tests regularly.
Types of Cholesterol Tests
Healthcare providers check the cholesterol levels of individuals through a blood test called a lipid panel test that measures the levels of cholesterol and other fats in your blood. Cholesterol and lipids are fat-like substances in your body.
A lipid profile blood test measures:
● Total cholesterol – total cholesterol in your blood.
● HDL-cholesterol (high-density cholesterol, aka “good” cholesterol).
● LDL-cholesterol (low-density cholesterol, aka “bad” cholesterol).
● Triglycerides (a different type of body fat).
For high-risk individuals, your GP may prescribe a cholesterol blood test with fasting for more detailed investigations. For cholesterol blood tests in Sutton, Croydon, or Carshalton make an appointment with Anna Pharmacy in South London.
Decoding Your Cholesterol Blood Test Results
Your cholesterol numbers reveal how much cholesterol how have circulating in your bloodstream. Ideally, your HDL (“good” cholesterol) should be 60 or above and your LDL (“bad” cholesterol) shouldn’t be above 100. In healthy people, the total for the two is 200 or below.
The following are healthy cholesterol levels for women and men aged 20 and older:
|Type of Cholesterol||Healthy Level|
|Total Cholesterol||125 to 200mg/dL|
|Non-HDL||Less than 130mg/dL|
|LDL||Less than 100mg/dL|
|HDL||40mg/dL or higher|
Early diagnosis of high cholesterol is key to preventing heart disease and stroke. Taking a cholesterol blood test in Croydon at Anna Pharmacy is an important step in diagnosing high cholesterol.
Book an appointment for your cholesterol blood test fasting in Carshalton at Anna Pharmacy and take a step towards a healthier you.