About Lipids Test
The Lipids test contains 5 tests. Using a finger prick blood collection it will test for:
- HDL:LDL Ratio
- Total Cholesterol
There are special transporters in your body called lipoproteins. They are like little cars that help drive around cholesterol to different parts of your body. Some of these drivers can be helpful and others not.
Monitoring and maintaining healthy levels of these lipids is important in staying healthy. While the body produces the cholesterol needed to function properly, the source for some cholesterol is the diet. Eating too much of foods that are high in saturated fats and trans unsaturated fats (trans fats) or having an inherited predisposition can result in a high level of cholesterol in the blood.
The extra cholesterol may be deposited in plaques on the walls of blood vessels. Plaques can narrow or eventually block the opening of blood vessels, leading to hardening of the arteries (atherosclerosis) and increasing the risk of numerous health problems, including heart disease and stroke.
Low-density lipoprotein (LDL)
This is often called “bad cholesterol”. This is oversimplified as LDL cholesterol is essential for your health. But if you have too much LDL cholesterol it can build up on the walls of your arteries. This is called cholesterol plaque and it narrows your arteries and increases your risk of blood clots — putting you at risk of heart disease.
High-density lipoprotein (HDL)
This is often called “good cholesterol”. HDL cholesterol helps to return LDL cholesterol from your arteries to your liver, where it can be removed from your body. This stops plaque from building up on the walls of your arteries, protecting you from heart disease. If your HDL cholesterol is too low it can actually increase your risk of heart disease.
A high serum LDL:HDL ratio can be predictive of sudden cardiac death in middle-aged men. It is a good idea to keep this as a baseline over time to give a clearer picture of how your lifestyle is affecting your health.
Triglycerides are a type of fat (lipid) that circulate in the blood. After you eat, the body converts excess calories into triglycerides which are then transported to cells to be stored as fat. Your body releases triglycerides to be used for energy.
Raised triglycerides are thought to be a risk factor for peripheral vascular disease (affecting the blood vessels which supply your arms and legs as well as organs below the stomach) as well as microvascular disease, affecting the tiny blood vessels around the heart.
Total Cholesterol is a measure of the total amount of cholesterol in your blood. It includes both low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol and high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol.
It’s important to remember that elevated cholesterol doesn’t mean a heart attack. In fact, only half of the people suffering from heart attacks have elevated cholesterol. It is simply part of the bigger picture.
Cholesterol is important for the body to manufacture hormones, vitamin D, bile acids, and help maintain the structure of your cells.