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One in Three Finns Has High Cholesterol

A third of Finns have high cholesterol, reports the Finnish Medical Society Duodecim.

Lääkäri ja stetoskooppi.
Image: Ludovic Di Orio /

Updated recommendations issued by Duodecim and the Finnish Internal Medicine Association on Tuesday call for lowering the upper limit of LDL cholesterol (“bad cholesterol”) to 2.0 mmol/l.

Duodecim’s and the Finnish Internal Medicine Association’s revised guidelines on the treatment and prevention of dyslipidemia, i.e., an increase in the level of lipids (e.g. cholesterol and triglycerides) in the blood, underscore the health benefits of statins, which are drugs that help to reduce cholesterol levels in people below 80 years of age. They also want to see the upper limit for LDL (“bad cholesterol”) capped at 2.0 mmol/l.

While health officials say that a third of Finns have elevated cholesterol levels, they point out that the nation’s heart health has improved since the early 1970s. Experts say they believe that heart health awareness campaigns have helped prevent some 250,000 coronary heart disease deaths in people below the age of 75.

Dyslipidemia is a condition in which LDL cholesterol levels (“bad cholesterol”) exceed 3.0mmol/l, triglyceride levels are above 2.0mmol/l and HDL cholesterol (“good cholesterol”) levels are below 1.0 mmol/l.

Cholesterol build-up inside arteries can lead to blockages, which can in turn trigger a heart attack or a stroke.

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