Too much cholesterol—a wax-like substance that circulates throughout the body—can lead to the hardening of the arteries, heart disease, and a greater risk of a heart attack. Yet you can have high cholesterol and never know it. Hence, don’t wait for warning signs or symptoms. In order to keep cholesterol levels in check, the AHA recommends that healthy adults ages 20 or older get a cholesterol test once every 5 years.
People at risk for heart disease may need to be tested more frequently so that the results can be used to guide treatment, notes Artinian.