Tuesday, 22 January 2013

What time of the day should you have your cholesterol test?

Image source: h.koppdelaney - cc

Most of us have been told to have "fasting" cholesterol test. As you would NO DOUBT be aware - being a faithful reader of this site (yes, YOU) - my previous posts have outlined studies showing that fasting is not all that necessary for cholesterol test.

Wait, you HAVEN'T read those posts yet??

Well, what are you waiting for? Click here and here!

Okay, now that we have established that there is in fact no need to have your cholesterol test done in the morning (after a night of fasting), the next question is: what is the best time of the day to have cholesterol test?

Langstead and coauthors published their study findings about this in the journal Circulation 2008:

  • Cross-sectional study
  • 33,391 individuals 
  • Age 20 - 95 years old


  • Total cholesterol,  low density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL), high density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL), non-HDL cholesterol, apolipoprotein A1, and apolipoprotein B did not differ substantially
  • Triglyceride levels were higher (but not a big difference) between noon and 5 PM compared with earlier or later in the day

Essentially this means that you can feel free to rock up to your doctor's surgery at any time to have your cholesterol level checked (provided they are open and free to see you of course!)

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