Healthians, a diagnostics company conducting tests in over 250 cities in India said its recent study revealed that six in ten Indians were found to have abnormal levels of bad cholesterol, with the highest prevalence amongst the 31-40 years age group.
The firm which used anonymised data from blood tests by 2.66 million people of ages 20 in the last few months, found that 63% have high low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol levels in their blood.
“LDL is often called bad cholesterol as it has been proven to be the leading cause of plaque build-up in arteries. Consumption of junk food and poor diet contributes to high levels of LDL and is co-prevalent with problems such as obesity, diabetes and heart disease,” the firm said.
“We hope that a comprehensive study like this sheds light on one of the most pressing health issues in today’s day and age – heart health,” said Deepak Sahni, Founder & CEO, Healthians .
“Analysing such data can be of huge help to not just regular people, but also to healthcare professionals and policymakers to better design solutions and initiatives that can improve India’s heart health,” he added.
What is even more alarming is that when the data is analysed per age groups, in the 31-40-year group, 69% of the patients tested had abnormal levels of LDL.
“This could be an indication of high-stress levels at this age. This is one of the reasons for the increasing number of cardiac arrests these days,” said Dr Sonal, Head of Lab Operations, Healthians.
Three in every ten Indians have abnormal levels of total cholesterol in their bloodstream, with the highest prevalence amongst the 31-40 years age group, as per the study.
It also found that 36% of Indians in the 40-60 age range have abnormal levels of total cholesterol. Interestingly, those who are older actually had lower levels of total cholesterol.
The corresponding percentage was 30% in the 60-70 age group, while it was 24% in the 70-80 age group.
Measured across other cholesterol-related parameters, it was found that 36% of Indians had abnormal levels of high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol, or good cholesterol, 39% had abnormal levels of triglycerides, and 30% had abnormal total cholesterol levels.
Analysed across genders, males had a higher prevalence of abnormal levels of LDL, triglycerides and total cholesterol.
About 64% of the males tested had abnormal LDL, 47% had abnormal triglycerides, and 32% had abnormal total cholesterol compared to 63%, 30% and 29% in females, respectively. However, more females had abnormal HDL levels compared to males.