The Importance Of Getting A Cholesterol Screening

Going to your general practitioner when you are sick is a good idea if you need medicine, but wellness visits are also important. There are many different health problems you may have even if you do not experience any negative symptoms, and high cholesterol is one of these. A visit to your general practitioner can determine if you have this problem, and your doctor can help you find ways to reduce the numbers:

How Is It Tested?

The only way you will know if you have high cholesterol is through a blood test. The most accurate results of cholesterol screenings are achieved if you fast before the nurse draws your blood, and this is something your doctor will probably tell you.

When the results come back, you will find out several things about your cholesterol, including:

  • Total cholesterol – this is measured in terms of milligrams per deciliter, and a normal reading should be 200 or less.
  • Low-density lipoproteins (LDL) – LDL refers to the bad cholesterol in your body, and a normal reading should be less than 100 milligrams per deciliter.
  • High-density lipoproteins (HDL) – this is the good cholesterol that helps protect your heart, and a normal reading is 60 or higher.
  • Triglycerides – these are fats in your blood, and a reading that is 150 or less is considered normal.

High cholesterol can affect your health, even though you will not feel like you are sick. There is a major correlation between high cholesterol and heart disease and stroke, and lowering your cholesterol levels is the best way to protect your heart.

How Is It Treated?

If your levels come back normal, your general practitioner will not recommend changing anything. If your levels are high in any of the areas, your doctor might recommend making some lifestyle changes and taking medication.

There are many types of medication available today for treating high cholesterol, but making changes in the way you live can help you naturally lower your cholesterol. Here are some of the ways you can do this:

  • Exercising – according to Mayo Clinic, 30 minutes of daily exercise can help you reduce your cholesterol naturally. Exercising helps you lose weight and helps increase the HDL in your blood.
  • Eating right – avoid fatty foods and gluten, and replace these foods with fruit, vegetables, and oatmeal. Consuming cinnamon can also decrease your cholesterol, and this is something you can add to almost anything you eat.
  • Getting enough sleep – if you do not get enough sleep, your body may produce more LDL, and that is why it is important to get at least eight hours of sleep each night.

Without a blood test, you will never know if you suffer from high cholesterol. By visiting your general practitioner, you can get a blood test to find this out, and this could help you live a longer, healthier life. To learn more, contact a company like Sound Family Health if you have other questions or need more help.