The word “cholesterol” seems to provoke many concerns. It is also associated with terminology and concepts that many people might not be too familiar with such as LDL, fatty acids and omega 3. Even though it can seem confusing, you can easily comprehend cholesterol’s role and learn how to maintain it at an adequate level.
What is cholesterol? It is a type of fat that fulfills various important roles within our body that is related to the proper function of some hormones, vitamin D and cell growth.
Cholesterol problems occur when it is found in the blood stream in elevated levels, because this fat type cannot be easily dissolved. To circulate throughout your body freely and to the arteries, it transports itself using the famous LDL (low-density lipoprotein) that is carried through the body as a locomotive train along with other types of fats.
LDL has the tendency to easily stick to artery walls forming atheroma, as these pieces of plaque grow they often break off into the blood stream and circulate until blocking or completely obstructing the passage to the artery. This cuts off the blood flow, which generates serious health concerns, such as a heart attack.
On the other hand, if we have HDL that is responsible for transporting cholesterol directly to our liver where it will be turned into bile, which aids in digesting other, consumed fats. This is the secret, cholesterol is not wicked but the lipoproteins that associated with it are. For this reason, it is recommended to have low levels of LDL cholesterol and high levels of HDL cholesterol.
How can you reduce cholesterol?
The key is with your diet. Of course you should consume low-fat foods, by beginning to bake, steaming or boiling your meals. Using olive oil is preferable when compared to other types of oils, also switch butter for margarine.
Remember that HDL is considered to be good cholesterol and doesn’t cause health problems and it is important to maintain high levels of it. Regular exercises is an ally to HDL but its enemies are a poor diet and tobacco, a substance that should be avoided at all costs for many other reasons.
What are reasonable cholesterol levels?
It is also recommendable to abide by the clinical results and recommendation by your family doctor. But a valuable piece of information is when a person has extremely high levels of cholesterol in their blood tests it is called hypercholesterolemia.
When the cholesterol levels are above 200mg/dl the patient has that pathology, also the LDL and HDL levels will be analyzed separately. This will localize the risks more precisely, such the risk of heart attacks.
When LDL levels are above 160mg/dl and the HDL levels are within the recommended levels of 35mg/dl for men and 40mg/dl for women. A professional healthcare provider should always analyze these figures immediately after receiving a clinical study.