You may have no idea that your cholesterol level is high because the condition can go completely unnoticed.
But changes in your fingers and toes can be an indication.
According to the NHS, high cholesterol is when you have too much of a fat called cholesterol in your blood.
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It is mainly caused by eating fatty foods, not exercising enough, being overweight, smoking and drinking alcohol, but it can also occur in families.
Too much cholesterol can block your blood vessels. It makes you more likely to have heart problems or a stroke.
While the condition may be asymptomatic, there are “certain sets of physical symptoms” to be aware of, according to The Express.
The warning signs may include:
Dr. Kevin Martinez says high cholesterol can lead to fat growth under the skin.
Medically referred to as xanthoma, these lumpy growths can vary in size; they can be as small as a pinhead or as large as a grape.
“They often look like a flat bump under the skin and sometimes look yellow or orange,” confirmed Dr. Martinez.
Although xanthomas can be painless, they can be tender to the touch and feel itchy.
These growths can also occur on the buttocks, knees or elbows – either in clusters or standing.
A doctor can diagnose xanthomas, but such a diagnosis may require a skin biopsy.
A lipid blood test can show if you have high cholesterol or not.
If cholesterol levels are reduced, it is possible for xanthomas to disappear.
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The NHS strongly recommends eating a healthy diet and exercising regularly to reduce dangerous cholesterol levels.
People are required to perform at least 150 minutes of moderate aerobic activity each week to manage their cholesterol levels.
To simplify things, 150 minutes of moderate activity can be divided into 30 minutes of daily activities, such as brisk walking.
For those with worrying cholesterol levels, a doctor will likely prescribe medication known as statins.
Heart UK – a leading cholesterol charity – explained that statins work by slowing down the production of cholesterol in the liver.
Therefore, thanks to statins, cholesterol levels in the blood decrease, which means that less cholesterol is at risk of blocking the arteries.
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