The TSH (thyroid stimulating hormone) is a hormone manufactured in the pituitary gland (found in the brain). Its role is to stimulate thyroxine production in the thyroid gland (found in the neck). A high level within a home blood test is associated with an underactive thyroid gland (hypothyroidism) and a low level is found if the thyroid gland is over-active (hyperthyroidism). Changes in the TSH level alone can indicate underlying thyroid problems even if the thyroxine levels are normal.
Seen by many as a better overall picture of cardiovascular health is the ratio of total cholesterol to HDL, which should ideally be under 4.
LDL (low density lipoprotein) is the component of cholesterol that is associated with higher risk of heart and blood vessel disease. The ideal level within a home blood test is below 3 mmol/L unless you are within a high risk group in which case it should ideally be under 2 mmol/L.
Triglycerides are a category of fat found in the blood. Triglycerides effectively store energy for later use by the body. High triglyceride levels within a home blood test are associated with pancreatitis, and possibly heart disease and strokes. Some medication can cause the level to rise, as can poorly controlled diabetes.