A new study conducted by a team of researchers from the Department of Clinical Biochemistry at Copenhagen University Hospital and the Department of Clinical Medicine has found that people will suffer from high cholesterol levels after Christmas and New Year celebrations.
During the study, researchers found that due to the rich food intake, average cholesterol levels of people will increase by 20 percent when compared to the cholesterol level in summer.
In the study, researchers analyzed the cholesterol levels of 25,000 Danes and revealed that butter and cream widely used in Christmas food are the main reason behind the rise in cholesterol levels. Researchers noted that nine out of the ten people who took part in Christmas celebration in Copenhagen had an elevated cholesterol level.
"Our study shows strong indications that cholesterol levels are influenced by the fatty food we consume when celebrating Christmas. The fact that so many people have high cholesterol readings straight after the Christmas holiday is very surprising," said Dr Anne Langsted, one of the co-authors of the study, Eurekalert.org reports.
Researchers in their study report published in the journal Atherosclerosis also asked people who have already high cholesterol levels to be a bit more cautious while participating in Christmas and New Year celebrations. They also added that a cholesterol test should be done some days after the Christmas celebrations to determine whether their count is lying on the healthy line.
"For individuals, this could mean that if their cholesterol readings are high straight after Christmas, and they could consider having another test taken later on in the year. In any event, there is a greater risk of finding that you have elevated cholesterol if you go to the doctor and have your cholesterol tested straight after Christmas. It is important to be aware of this, both for doctors who treat high cholesterol and those wishing to keep their cholesterol levels down," said Dr Signe Vedel-Krogh, another author of the study.
High cholesterol level is usually caused by various factors including unhealthy diet, smoking, excessive drinking and lack of physical exercises. Elevated levels of cholesterol will gradually result in atherosclerosis, and finally, the person may face life-threatening events like heart attacks and strokes.