Cholesterol is a lipid which is a fatty substance mainly found in your liver and it is vital for our bodies to function.
Most of us are aware of the dangers of high cholesterol. If your lipid levels are extremely high, it results in a condition known as hyperlipidemia. This condition can be symptomless but it can increase ones chances of having a stoke, mini stroke or heart attack.
An unhealthy diet. Excessive amounts of saturated fat, smoking and a family history of strokes or heart disease are all risk factors that can increase your chances of experiencing health problems due to high cholesterol.
Currently 7 million people take Statins, a cholesterol-combatting drug and this figure is set to increase significantly. This is partly due to the funding and availability of Statins as the drug is no longer patented and the price per pill has plummeted.
The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) has drafted proposals that would see a staggering 10 million additional people being prescribed Statins. Currently, only people with a 20% risk of heart disease are prescribed the drug, but this is set to increase as the those with a 10% risk of heart disease may no receive the drug.
The proposals have been applauded by heart disease charities and some doctors, but many doctors have expressed concerns that a prescription of Statins will simply mask the real underlying health problems rather than encouraging people to deal with their real issues such as smoking cessation, dietary and exercise advice to promote a healthier life style all round.