Cholesterol is a type of fat that is found in the blood and plays an important role in our bodies. However, high levels of cholesterol can lead to serious health issues, such as heart disease, stroke, and other cardiovascular problems. Unfortunately, cholesterol is often referred to as a “silent killer” as there are usually no symptoms and the first indication that something is wrong may be a heart attack. That’s why it’s important to have your cholesterol levels checked regularly.
Instant cholesterol testing only requires a short nurse appointment that provides you with both the test and the results during the same appointment. This type of testing makes it easy and convenient for people to understand their cholesterol levels and take steps to keep them under control.
Statistics from the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) show that cardiovascular disease (CVD) is the leading cause of death in the United Kingdom, accounting for around 26% of all deaths. The most common type of CVD is coronary heart disease, which is caused by a build-up of fatty deposits in the arteries leading to the heart. High cholesterol levels can contribute to the formation of these fatty deposits.
By knowing your cholesterol numbers through instant testing, you can understand your risk of developing CVD and take the necessary steps to keep your levels under control. NICE recommends that all adults in the UK should have their cholesterol levels checked at least once every five years, or more frequently if they are at increased risk of CVD. Those at increased risk include people with a family history of CVD, smokers, people with high blood pressure, and people with diabetes.
To keep your cholesterol levels under control, it is important to make changes to your diet. This includes eating more fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and lean proteins, and reducing your intake of saturated and trans fats. You should also aim to maintain a healthy weight and be physically active for at least 30 minutes a day.
If lifestyle changes are not enough, medication may be required. The most common type of cholesterol-lowering medication is statins, which work by reducing the production of cholesterol in the liver. Statins are widely used in the UK and are safe and effective.
The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) has recently released updated guidelines on the use of statins, which now recommend that they can be considered for people at a lower risk threshold.
Further reading on “NICE recommends wider use of statins for prevention of cardiovascular disease (CVD)”.
In conclusion, instant cholesterol testing provides an easy and convenient way to understand your cholesterol levels and take steps to keep them under control. Regular testing is important for everyone in the UK, especially those who are at increased risk of CVD. By knowing your numbers, making changes to your diet, maintaining a healthy weight, and being physically active, you can help keep your cholesterol levels in the healthy range and reduce your risk of developing serious health problems.
Related services available at Fleet Street Clinic:
Instant Cholesterol Testing with a nurse
Blood Tests at Fleet St. Clinic
Well Person Medical
These days, we tend to be a bit more health focused with our approach to life. For those of us that think we are healthy, just how fit are we really?
A Health MOT is the best way to get a full picture of your overall wellbeing, knowing your body and its’ crucial health numbers can be instrumental in preventing illness and disease.
What numbers do we need to know?
- Body Mass Index (BMI) – We’ve heard this term over and over in the media but do you really know what it means? BMI is a simple index of weight-for-height that is commonly used to classify underweight, overweight and obesity in adults. It is your weight divided by the square of your height in meters.
- Resting heart rate – Resting Heart Rate is an indicator of your basic fitness level and a strong predictor of cardiovascular health.
- Waist to hip ratio – Spare body fat can often be stored around the tummy and the abdomen’s organs. Research has shown that this kind of fat has health consequences which can contribute to heart disease, obesity and diabetes.
- Cholesterol – Did you know that over half of all UK adults have raised cholesterol and a cholesterol test is the only way you will know if you are affected? High cholesterol can lead to heart disease, a common killer in the UK.
- Blood pressure – Having high blood pressure means that you are putting extra strain on your arteries and your heart. This strain can cause the arteries to clog up which can lead to a heart attack, stroke, kidney disease or dementia. All can be prevented with a quick simple test.
- Blood sugars – Knowing your blood sugar levels can detect if you are diabetic or importantly if you are at risk of becoming diabetic. This is very important not only to monitor and effectively manage diabetes, but if it is type 2 adult onset that is caused by lifestyle, you may be able to make dietary changes to avoid medication and actually prevent the disease.
- Bone density – Bone density testing is used to assess the strength of your bones. It can be used to identify if you are at risk of osteoporosis. The test, referred to as bone densitometry or bone mineral density scan (BMD), is a simple, non-invasive procedure that can be finished in just minutes.
- Mammogram/prostate check – Depending on your age, your GP will advise whether to have one of these checks which can help detect early signs of tumours or cancerous cells.
If you want to find out your health numbers, you can book a full body medical or GP appointment online.