LipidsIf excess levels of the fats cholesterol and triglyceride (known collectively as lipids) are present in the blood, fatty plaques may develop in arteries restricting the blood supply to organs such as the heart and brain. This blood test must be performed after a 12 hour overnight fast to ensure that base levels are obtained. Alcohol should be avoided for three days before a triglyceride test.

A level below 5.0 mmol/L for cholesterol, and 2.5 mmol/L for triglycerides is normally considered satisfactory, but there are several different types of cholesterol (high density, low density and very low density), and the ratios between these types, as well as the patient’s individual medical and family history, are also very important in determining the appropriate levels for both lipids.

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