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Cholesterol, triglycerides and glycaemia: always to be kept under control

Cholesterol and triglycerides, i.e. the fats of our bodies, and glycaemia, i.e. the blood sugar concentration, must be kept under control.

Author: Francesca Tessarollo
Date: Nov 12, 2010 - 9:04:05 AM

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Cholesterol, triglycerides and glucose are important for our body: triglycerides and glucose are essential sources of energy, while cholesterol forms cell membranes, is used to synthesize the hormones of growth, development and reproduction, and also serves to form the bile acids that contribute to intestinal absorption of fat. The value of triglycerides, cholesterol and glucose must be monitored, in order to prevent them to cause damages to ourselves.  

As far as cholesterol is concerned, we must distinguish between the so-called “good” cholesterol (HDL type), which plays an important role in the protection of arteries, and the VLDL or LDL cholesterol, the bad one, which can cause thickening of arteries and, as a consequence, loss of elasticity and tone, if it is present in our bodies in higher-than-normal levels.

This means that an excessive accumulation of cholesterol in our body (over 200 mg per 100 ml of blood) may increase the risk of heart attack and stroke. In order to avoid these problems, it is advisable to undergo specific tests to measure the concentration of cholesterol in the blood, especially if you are at risk. The cholesterol test permits to measure the total level of cholesterol and the level of good and bad cholesterol. Measuring cholesterol is not important to diagnose a disease, but to prevent cardiovascular diseases, namely coronary artery disease, cerebral stroke and myocardial infarction.

However, it is not enough to know the level of blood cholesterol to know something more about the risk of suffering from one of these diseases: in order to assess the cardiovascular risk you should have an overview of blood glucose, blood pressure, age, lifestyle and level of triglycerides in the blood.  

The test that measures the concentration of triglycerides in the blood, as well as the cholesterol test, is very important and useful. Triglycerides, as well as cholesterol, are produced in part by the body and are in part introduced though food. In the case of triglycerides, the highest percentage is introduces through food: triglycerides are then accumulated in the adipose tissue and in part in blood. Monitoring the presence of blood triglycerides is essential to assess the cardiovascular risk of a person, especially in the case of patients suffering from heart diseases.  

In addition to the fats of your body, you should keep also the level of sugar under control, namely of glucose, which is an important source of energy for the body. The level of blood sugar depends on the balance between the sugar deriving from food or from body reserves and the sugar that is used by various tissues. If this balance is altered, there may be some serious problems such as hypoglycemia and hyperglycemia. The blood glucose test is therefore useful to ascertain that there are no such problems and is also fundamental for the diagnosis of diabetes.  

To conduct cholesterol, triglycerides and glycaemia tests a blood sample is enough, but for glycaemia also a urine test is enough.    

This article was written by Francesca Tessarollo with help from esame delle urine. For more information, please visit studio della fertilità or test cardiovascolari

View all articles by Francesca Tessarollo

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