Classification of fats in the blood

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There is a large variety of fats in human blood, some of which are good and some are bad and harmful … for this reason fat classification tests (lipid analysis) were invented.

There are many questions and common questions that people ask in order to obtain more information about blood fats, normal levels and levels that pose a risk, and so on. We offer you a set of questions and answers on the topic, which may be of interest to everyone:

1. I took a cholesterol test, and my level was less than 200 mg per 100 ml (5.18 mmol / L). Do I need to have a blood lipid (classification) test?

If your total cholesterol value is less than 200 mg per 100 milliliter (5.18 mmol / L) and your family history does not include heart disease or other risk factors, then it is likely that no additional blood lipid classification is required. However, it is desirable to check values ​​for HDL (good cholesterol) levels to ensure that its value is not too low. Most of the tests that are done give an answer about the level of total (total) cholesterol and HDL cholesterol.
2. The results of my blood lipid classification (analysis) test indicate elevated triglyceride levels, but no symptoms of elevated LDL (bad cholesterol). Why?

In most blood lipid classification tests, the LDL cholesterol values ​​are calculated as independent values, independently of the rest of the lipids in the blood. However, this calculation is not important if triglyceride levels are higher than 400 mg per 100 ml (4.52 mmol / L). In order to determine LDL cholesterol values ​​when triglyceride levels are higher than 400 mg per 100 ml (4.52 mmol / L), a special test should be performed, such as a direct LDL cholesterol test or lipid test with supercentrifugal force (also called in Sometimes: Beta testing.

3. What is a VLDL?

VLDL – very low density lipoproteins is one of three major protein compounds. The other two are high-density proteins (HDL) and low-density proteins (LDL). Each of these ingredients contains a mixture of cholesterol, protein, and triglycerides, but in different amounts that differentiate each of these three types of proteins.

LDL contains the largest amounts of cholesterol. HDL contains the highest amounts of protein, and VLDL contains the highest amounts of triglycerides. Since VLDL contains the largest amount of triglycerides, and the protein composition remains approximately constant, it is possible to estimate VLDL cholesterol levels by dividing the triglyceride values ​​(in milligrams per 100 milliliters) by 5.

To date, there is no simple and effective way to directly measure VLDL cholesterol levels. The assessment is performed by counting the triglycerides that are the key in most cases. However, this calculation is not correct if triglyceride levels are higher than 400 mg per 100 ml (see Question 2 above). It has been shown that there is a relationship between high levels of VLDL cholesterol and an increased risk of heart disease and stroke.

4. What cholesterol is not “good cholesterol” (HDL)?

Non-HDL-C cholesterol is calculated by subtracting the HDL (good cholesterol) values ​​from the total cholesterol in the blood. The result of the process expresses the level of multiple cholesterol that can accumulate in the arteries and form a layer of plaque, causing blood vessels to narrow and block. Unlike a VLDL cholesterol count (see Question 3 above), this type of cholesterol count is not affected by elevated triglyceride levels.

The values ​​of bad cholesterol (not HDL) are used to estimate the risk and likelihood of developing vascular disease, especially if triglyceride levels are very high, because high levels of VLDL cholesterol increase the risk and likelihood of developing these diseases.

If you have high triglyceride levels (more than 200 mg per 100 ml), non-HDL cholesterol values ​​can be used as an additional treatment goal, such as making lifestyle changes to lower blood lipid values.

Is there anything else I should know about the classification of fats in the blood?

There is an increasing interest in measuring triglyceride levels in people who are not fasting, because taking a sample without fasting better reflects triglyceride levels in daily life, because the body appears in most hours of the day, evaluate body fats after eating a meal and not Values ​​at the time of fasting.

However, it remains unclear how the results of measured values ​​without fasting should be interpreted to assess risk levels. Therefore, there is no change, at this stage, in the recommendations for implementing the fasting lipid classification test.

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