Bad breath, swelling, sluggishness and dizziness, some of the things to pay attention to.
Cholesterol is that little monster that many fear but that not everyone knows well. What we are all sure of is that when cholesterol is high, something has to be done. However, prior to that there are symptoms that indicate the exaggerated level of high cholesterol.
Cholesterol is one of the markers that is evaluated in routine tests because presenting high values is one of the main risk factors for cardiovascular disease. In Argentina, for example, almost three out of 10 adults have high cholesterol. And globally, the indices replicate.
Recommended measures to lower it include healthy diet, exercise and drugs (if necessary).
Cholesterol is not bad per se, the body needs it to function. But the presence of excess LDL (known as “bad”) cholesterol contributes to the formation of plaques on the walls of the arteries, which narrow or block blood flow and can lead to heart attacks or cerebrovascular attacks.
Although there are medications that help control cholesterol, the factors linked to Lifestyle they are pillars in the strategy and cannot be replaced by drugs.
But above all, all adults must be attentive to the symptoms that the body itself reveals when the levels start to rise. These are the 10 most common and important.
Swelling and numbness in extremities
Swelling and numbness in the extremities is one of the early symptoms of high cholesterol. This reaction occurs because accumulated lipids prevent optimal circulationwhich decreases the passage of oxygen and nutrients to the muscles.
Bad breath or halitosis is a very common sign in patients who could be having cholesterol problems. Since this substance is secreted in the liver, its excessive accumulation hinders digestion, which manifests itself dryly and unpleasant odors in the mouth.
Stomach heaviness and indigestion
The excess of lipids in the blood and the liver affects the metabolism, and prevents the development of the digestive process in a normal way, especially when eating foods with high fat content. For this reason, high levels of bad cholesterol (LDL) and total cholesterol usually lead to continuous episodes of indigestion and heaviness.
Dizziness and headaches
As cholesterol is deposited in the arteries, the circulation is increasingly affected and, therefore, cellular oxygenation is interrupted. This is manifested by continuous dizziness, loss of balance and severe tension headaches.
It is common for patients with high LDL cholesterol levels to have a yellow bulge in the eyesirritation and blurred vision.
The accumulation of lipids in the arteries affects the digestive process. In other words, since intestinal motility decreases, episodes of constipation may appear.
Chest pain is a very easy symptom to identify. It is almost always a reason for immediate medical consultation. Although there are many diseases associated with its appearance, most cases have to do with the effects of high LDL cholesterol.
Erectile dysfunction, weakness and fatigue
In men, high cholesterol can interfere with their normal sexual function. The accumulation of these lipids in the blood vessels worsens blood flow, also the one that goes towards the sexual organs. And, consequently, erectile function can be affected. The feeling of weakness, fatigue and the desire to sleep, in unusual hours and continuously, they are usually derived from: nutritional deficiencies, excess physical activity, illness or high cholesterol levels.
The symptoms of high cholesterol can also include skin conditions, such as hives and others. They often manifest themselves through reddish spots, inflammation and an uncomfortable itching sensation that is often difficult to control.
Cholesterol plays an important role in the bile secretion, a substance that helps digest fats and break down food. But when it is too concentrated, it can turn into crystals and hard stones that remain in the gallbladder. For this reason – beyond other factors – the appearance of gallstones could be a sign of high cholesterol.