Last week, six members of the Tonic team successfully completed the most up to date point of care testing training. This means that we are now able to offer our clients on-site ‘Non Fasting Lipid and Glucose Testing’ or put simply, blood sugar and cholesterol testing.
According to research by the European Heart Journal in 2016, fasting had little or no effect on full lipid profile results hence being able to offer these tests in the workplace and get immediate results. Plus knowing your full lipid profile; as opposed to just total cholesterol (TC); is critical in fully establishing the point of care cardiac risk factors.
Why is a cholesterol test so important? Firstly, a cholesterol test can help determine your risk of the build up of plaques in your arteries that can lead to narrowed or blocked arteries throughout your body (atherosclerosis). High cholesterol levels usually don’t cause any signs or symptoms, so a cholesterol test is an important tool.
Why does high cholesterol increase your risk of heart attack and stroke?
Too much cholesterol in your blood can cause fatty material to build up in your artery walls, which in turn can lead to a heart attack or stroke. These are major forms of cardiovascular disease (CVD). This can happen if a piece of the fatty material breaks off, causing a blood clot to form, which might block an artery. If this does happen in an artery supplying your heart, this is a heart attack. However, if it’s an artery supplying your brain, then this is known as a stroke.
We all need sugar in our blood to provide cells with energy. The hormone insulin allows sugar (glucose) in your bloodstream to enter your cells, where it can used for energy. If you don’t have enough insulin, sugar stays in the bloodstream. Over time, high blood sugar levels damage your blood vessels. This can cause other problems, such as coronary heart disease, kidney disease and diabetic eye disease. It’s important to know whether you have high blood sugar so that this can be controlled, reducing the risk of damage.
The risks of high blood sugar:
A high blood sugar level could mean you either have diabetes (type 1 or type 2) or have a high risk of developing type 2 diabetes. Yes, diabetes can have symptoms, such as thirst, urinating a lot, blurred vision, weight loss, recurrent infections and tiredness but you may only get these mildly, or not at all. That’s why it’s important to get tested.
Essentially what we are testing for is risk factors of cardivascular disease (CVD) and remember the more risk factors you have, the greater your chance of developing CVD. The good news is that for many risk factors – once you know about them – you can do something about them, especially unhealthy cholesterol levels and diabetes!
So, when you get tested at a Tonic clinic, we will tell you the levels of your: total cholesterol, HDL cholesterol, LDL cholesterol, non-HDL cholesterol, and triglycerides plus your blood sugar. You will be better informed; have your results explained and be given advice to help improve your health and wellbeing wherever possible.
BFRAND NEW for 2018:
Tonic's workplace wellbeing app offers unlimited access to a library of health, wellbeing and lifestyle guidance and support.
We know that supporting engagement consistently leads to a more productive, healthier and resilient workforce. Therefore, our unique and innovative approach utilises intuitive digital technology, blended with personalised on-site services delivered by the Tonic team.