Our cholesterol Service is administered by our trained Pharmacy team. If you are interested in receiving this service, our skilled professionals will take you to one of our GPhC approved consultation rooms, and will take a small blood sample from your finger tip. Once your results are present the Pharmacist will go through your results and explore further options with you.
What is Cholesterol?
Cholesterol is a fatty substance (lipid) made by the liver which is required for the production of vitamin D, bile acids and steroid hormones. The liver can produce up to 2 grams of cholesterol every day, but this may be reduced if we eat foods which are cholesterol rich.
Understanding good and bad Cholesterol
There are two main types of cholesterol, commonly referred to as good (high-density lipoprotein) and bad (low-density lipoprotein) cholesterol.
High-density Lipoprotein (HDL)
Foods that increase HDL include:
- Oily fish
- Olive, sunflower and rapeseed oil
Low-density Lipoprotein (LDL)
Foods that increase LDL include:
- Pastries and pies
- Coconut oil
- Palm oil
- Fatty meats
Why should you have your cholesterol measured?
An excess of bad cholesterol and/or a reduced amount of good cholesterol in your blood can cause increased quantities of bad cholesterol to stick to the artery walls. This continues to build up and can eventually make it more difficult for blood to flow through them or block them completely.
High levels of bad cholesterol can be caused by many things, some within our control such as our diet and lifestyle, while others, like ageing and family history cannot be controlled and we may need some intervention to help keep our levels under control.
High cholesterol can affect anyone even if you’re young, slim, healthy and active. High cholesterol rarely has any symptoms there you may have high cholesterol and not even know.
High cholesterol levels can increase your risk of a number of serious and potentially life-threatening health conditions, such as:
- Heart attacks
- Coronary heart disease
- Heart failure
- Mini stroke (TIA)
- Vascular dementia
- Peripheral arterial disease
You are at risk of high cholesterol if you:
- Have been diagnosed with coronary heart disease, stroke, mini-stroke or peripheral arterial disease
- Have a family history of cardiovascular disease
- Are overweight or obese
- Are over the age of 40
- Have a close family member with a history of cholesterol-related disease
- Have high blood pressure or diabetes
- Have another medical condition