Hearing loss and other paradoxical signs of high cholesterol

Απώλεια ακοής και άλλα παράδοξα σημάδια υψηλής χοληστερίνης

What is the lesser known symptom of the ‘silent killer’ that affects 1 in 4 people and occurs in the ears.

Cholesterol is a fatty substance in the blood, the increased levels of which are mainly caused by eating fatty foods, lack of physical exercise, being overweight, smoking and drinking alcohol.

The condition can also have a family background (familial hypercholesterolaemia).

Experts warn that hearing loss can be a “lesser known” sign of high cholesterol or hypercholesterolaemia, a common condition that affects one in four people.

High cholesterol is often called the silent killer because most of the time it causes no symptoms and we only learn we have it through a blood test.

Patients can lower their cholesterol levels with a healthy diet and exercise, and some need to take medication. High cholesterol levels can block blood vessels, putting you at risk of heart attack or stroke.

Hearing expert Peter Byrom notes that hearing loss can be a “lesser known” sign of high cholesterol: “It may not be the first warning sign to appear, but it’s certainly something that shouldn’t be ignored.”

As he explains, hearing loss caused by high cholesterol tends to be gradual and often affects both ears equally.

It often begins as difficulty hearing loud sounds or understanding conversation in noisy environments. If left untreated, it can get worse over time, Byrom adds.

Cholesterol narrows the arteries, which restricts blood flow. Since our ears rely on a healthy blood supply to function properly, hearing problems can occur.

And he adds: ” When blood flow to the sensitive structures of the inner ear is problematic, it can lead to hearing loss .”

The hearing loss specialist stresses that if you start having problems with your ears, you should seek medical help.

You may need to have blood tests to check your cholesterol levels. If high cholesterol is indeed the culprit, you will likely need to make lifestyle changes and possibly take medication to manage your cholesterol levels.

Another paradoxical sign of high cholesterol can appear in the toes. Brittle or slow-growing toenails are a sign of high cholesterol.

Three other, also lesser known signs are swelling of the joints, knees and ankles, xanthelasma (small yellow patches of cholesterol near the inner corner of the eye) and the gray ring in the cornea of ​​your eye (Corneal arcus).

According to the British Heart Foundation, almost half of British adults live with cholesterol levels above the national guidelines (above 5 mmol/L).

According to cardiologists, high-fiber foods should be a key part of your diet if you have high cholesterol. Foods rich in soluble fiber, such as oats, bind cholesterol in the digestive system before it can circulate in the blood.

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