High levels of cholesterol in the body is one of the major health concerns. It is associated with various heart-related problems like stroke, coronary heart disease, and hypertension. Lack of physical activity and unhealthy diets are one of the factors that contribute to an increase in cholesterol levels. It is often advised to keep the cholesterol in check through proper diet and exercise. Maintaining a healthy lifestyle is also advised to avoid any complications.
Tips to understand your lipid profile reports
With the risks linked to excessive cholesterol, many of us tend to get anxious upon seeing the high numbers in our lipid report. However, according to Dr. Vishakha Shivdasani, a high total cholesterol number doesn’t indicate that the person may suffer or is suffering from a heart disease.
In her latest Instagram Reel, the doctor explains what the different parameters in a lipid profile mean and what should one look for in the cholesterol report.
The doctor says that people focus on the high total cholesterol number of over 200 or 250 in their lipid profile. But instead, they should be looking for the reason behind the high number, she adds. The elevated levels can also be due to high good cholesterol and low bad cholesterol.
According to the doctor, triglycerides are one of the most significant barometers of heart health. She suggests checking the ratio of the total cholesterol to triglycerides or that of triglycerides to HDL or high-density lipoprotein. The normal level of triglycerides is under 100 mg/dl, “though the normal values start at 150 mg/dl in most labs,” the doctor says.
She emphasises that the triglycerides to HDL ratio indicates metabolic health. If that number is high then one is at a higher risk of developing a cardiovascular disease. According to her, this number should be 3 but for those with a family history of heart disease, a number below 2 is considered safe.
Another factor that can reflect your heart health is the level of HDL. The higher the number, the more protection the heart gets. She insists that the total cholesterol level or the bad cholesterol numbers in isolation is not something that concerns her.
If you are seeking a clear picture of your heart health then got for certain blood tests like lipoprotein (a), serum homocysteine, and HSCRP.
Disclaimer: This content including advice provides generic information only. It is in no way a substitute for a qualified medical opinion. Always consult a specialist or your own doctor for more information. NDTV does not claim responsibility for this information.
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