Healthy people have a greater chance of having high cholesterol levels in winter, researchers from the University of Massachusetts Medical Centre in Worcester have found. The colder temperatures of winter may trigger higher cholesterol readings in women. New research also suggests the cold may raise cholesterol in people who already have elevated levels.
The findings suggest that large numbers of people could be diagnosed as having high cholesterol in winter, they say.
Cardiologist Ira Ockene and his colleagues investigated seasonal changes in cholesterol among 517 people. Over 12 months they collected data quarterly on diet, physical activity, exposure to light, and blood lipid levels, reports theage.com.au
Accoding to BBC cholesterol levels may vary with the changing seasons, a study suggests. Researchers found that their cholesterol levels changed throughout the year, peaking in winter. They were at their lowest in summer. High cholesterol can increase the risk of heart disease.
All of those who took part in the study were closely monitored by doctors to see if they changed their diet or lifestyle over the course of the year. None did so.
Researches suggest the data may indicate warmer weather and increased physical activity in the summer contributed to lower levels of cholesterol during the summer.
50 percent of the study volunteers worked in the service industry or in white-collar occupations. Smokers made up approximately 16 percent of those in the study, with no significant differences in sex.
Researchers also wrote "we do not believe that season-specific guidelines would be justified", and more research is needed to " better understand the mechanism through which physical activity and temperature control systems could aid in the prevention of coronary heart disease", inform healthtalk.ca