Did a yo­gurt send my choles­terol up?

The Scottish Mail on Sunday - - Health -

I HAD some blood tests last week and one showed slightly raised choles­terol. An hour and a half be­fore the tests, I ate a full-fat yo­gurt with muesli and berries. Could this have af­fected the re­sult?

EAT­ING be­fore a blood test for choles­terol no longer af­fects the re­sult.

It is im­por­tant to re­mem­ber that choles­terol is tested as a means to quan­tify risk of heart dis­ease and stroke. The over­all choles­terol level is no longer con­sid­ered cru­cial, but rather the to­tal choles­terol com­pared to the pro­por­tion of good choles­terol, known as HDL. This ra­tio is crit­i­cal for long-term health. High choles­terol it­self does not need treat­ment, so slightly raised val­ues in an oth­er­wise healthy per­son should not be a cause for con­cern.

TWO years ago, at 66, I was di­ag­nosed with os­teo­poro­sis. It felt like, overnight, I had be­come an in­valid. I had very low bone den­sity in my lower spine with a frac­tured ver­te­bra. Since then, apart from an an­nual trip to the hos­pi­tal where I’m given in­tra­venous med­i­ca­tion, there doesn’t seem any help avail­able. I won­der what the fu­ture holds?

AN OS­TEO­PORO­SIS di­ag­no­sis should not nec­es­sar­ily mean dis­abil­ity, but a ver­te­bral frac­ture may.

This frac­ture within the spine can oc­cur spon­ta­neously in os­teo­poro­sis just be­cause the bones are weaker and less dense, and of­ten from sim­ple move­ments such as bend­ing. We call this a fragility frac­ture and it can of­ten re­veal pre­vi­ously un­di­ag­nosed os­teo­poro­sis.

Frac­tured ver­te­brae cause back pain as well as loss of height and curv­ing of the spine. This can lead to dif­fi­cul­ties with bend­ing, reach­ing, dress­ing and wash­ing and can also squash the di­ges­tive sys­tem, caus­ing acid re­flux and prob­lems with swal­low­ing and eat­ing.

For any­one with os­teo­poro­sis, ex­er­cise and move­ment are rec­om­mended, par­tic­u­larly strength-train­ing to build up dif­fer­ent mus­cle groups in­clud­ing hips, wrist and spine.

Vi­ta­min D sup­ple­ments and cal­cium are also es­sen­tial, es­pe­cially for peo­ple who spend most of their time in­doors.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.