What is Lipid Profile Test?

A lipid profile test, also commonly known as a cholesterol test, is done to measure the amount of cholesterol and triglycerides in your body. Monitoring and evaluating levels of cholesterol and triglyceride is advisable as their elevated levels can lead to a buildup of plaque in your blood vessels, which can cause damage and increase your risk of heart problems.

Many times, serious life-threatening diseases exist in the body without noticeable signs and symptoms. This heightens the need for preventive health check-ups. The lipid profile test can be taken as a regular screening test to check your cholesterol levels or as a preventive check for several conditions, especially heart related diseases. Subsequent testing can be done to monitor and evaluate cholesterol levels after treatment and lifestyle modifications.

Lipid profile test measures the following lipids in your blood:
A. Low-density Lipoprotein (LDL): LDL is commonly known as “bad cholesterol”. Excess LDL in your blood can lead to a build-up of fatty deposits(plaque) in your arteries, thereby reducing the blood flow and increasing the risk of heart ailments and stroke.

B. High-density Lipoprotein (HDL): HDL is also commonly known as “good cholesterol”as it reduces the buildup of LDL, ensuring the free flow of blood in the arteries.

C. Total Cholesterol: This is the total amount of cholesterol in your body.

D. Triglycerides: Extra calories from our food are converted into triglycerides and stored in our fat cells. Elevated triglyceride levels in your blood are not only linked to heart ailments but also diabetes, pancreatitis, and stroke.

It is important to understand the reference range for the components of the lipid profile.

1. LDL
Near Optimal-100-129 mg/dL
Borderline high-130-159 mg/dL
High risk-160 mg/dL and above
2. HDL
40mg/dL or less is considered a risk factor.

3. Triglycerides
Desirable- < 150mg/dL
High risk-> 200mg/dL

The importance and benefits of diagnosing an ailment in its initial stage are known to all. Treatment costs aside, timely intervention also reduces patient anxiety.
Getting your lipid profile checked is essential if:

  • you have high blood pressure
  • you have a family history of heart issues, stroke, high cholesterol, diabetes
  • you have an unexplained weight gain

However, it is advisable to get a lipid profile done if you have one or more of the following risk factors or habits:

  • Being overweight or obese
  • Sedentary lifestyle
  • Tobacco and alcohol use
  • Diabetes or a prediabetic condition
  • Sedentary lifestyle
  • Smoking and drinking
  • Diabetes or Prediabetic condition