Dangers of Ignoring Cholesterol Problems
Cholesterol is a type of fat in our blood, created by our liver. We need cholesterol for our organs to grow and operate. There are two types of cholesterol: LDL and HDL. LDL (low-density lipoprotein) is considered the “bad” cholesterol. HDL (high-density lipoprotein) on the other hand is known as the “good” cholesterol. The HDL cholesterol tries to rid our bodies of excess LDL cholesterol. You can also gain cholesterol by eating unhealthy processed foods, including meats or certain dairy products.
It becomes a severe problem when our bodies have too much of the “bad” cholesterol in our bloodstream. If you ignore cholesterol problems, it could lead to serious medical issues. When you have too much cholesterol, it builds up in the walls of your arteries. Your arteries start to become narrow and harden, which slows down and also blocks the flow of blood. This is very important, as your blood carries oxygen throughout your body, and without oxygen, your body cannot function. This could lead to atherosclerosis, a heart attack, or even a stroke. These conditions have a great impact on your quality of life, as all of them are leading causes of death in the United States.
Managing Your Cholesterol
It is important to take good care of your body to prevent high cholesterol and other illnesses. There are various ways to manage your cholesterol. These include eating healthy foods, such as fruits (low in sugar) and vegetables. Other healthy foods include oatmeal, salmon, avocados, nuts, and beans. It is also important to manage your weight, and not to smoke. Healthcare consultants recommend exercising a few times a week as it lowers blood pressure, reduces the strain on your heart, and helps with your weight. Keep in mind previous medical conditions, family history, and age can also contribute to high cholesterol. Be sure to check your blood pressure regularly to catch any issues early on.
Studies show that men need to check cholesterol levels as early as 35, whereas women can begin routine cholesterol screenings around age 45. Of course, if you have other medical issues, such as cardiovascular disease, your cholesterol should be monitored every year, if not more often.
It is important to note that when you have high cholesterol, you do not show any symptoms. It is crucial that you test and manage your cholesterol and make sure the numbers are good. To check your cholesterol level, a small sample of blood is taken from your finger or arm. This is also known as a lipid panel or lipid profile. There are several point of care devices available to do this, including Cardiochek TC and CardioChek PA Analyzer. These tests allow for fast, accurate lipid and glucose results.
You can visit your doctor, the mobile health clinic, or even your on-site clinic at work to find out more. Many companies have employee wellness programs or health fairs where they provide helpful information and on-site care for all kinds of medical concerns.