Cholesterol is produced in the liver by human beings and is used in a variety of bodily functions. From being a part of the cell membrane of every cell, to being a crucial part of memory and brain functions, cholesterol is one of the most important building blocks of the human body. However, cholesterol is also ingested in the form of certain food products. Cholesterol is carried from one cell to another in the form of lipoproteins which are made up of fat, i.e. lipids and proteins. There are two basic types of lipoproteins, low density lipoprotein and high density lipoprotein. These,along with triglycerides make up the total composition of cholesterol in the human body.
Low density lipoprotein, commonly known as the bad cholesterol this lipoprotein causes plaque in the arteries. This thick, hard deposit in the arteries causes them to loose their flexibility and restricts the blood flow. This can cause exhaustion, a variety of heart and circulatory diseases, lethargy and in some cases a stroke.
High density lipoprotein, also known as good cholesterol, aids in the regulation and removal of LDL cholesterol from the arteries. Studies have revealed that HDL cholesterol acts like a remover of LDL cholesterol, carrying it away from the arteries and back to the liver where it is broken down and removed from the body. HDL carries a large amount of the blood cholesterol with it, helping balance the cholesterol levels in the body. Healthy HDL levels help protect the body against heart attacks and strokes, similarly low levels have been known to make the body prone to these diseases.
Triglycerides are a type of fat that stores the spare energy from your diet. Our bodies require a certain amount of energy to function and carry out our day-to-day activities without a hitch; triglycerides provide us the energy to perform all these functions. However, high levels of triglycerides can cause atherosclerosis or complete constriction of arteries. High triglycerides are caused due to obesity,smoking, alcohol abuse, lack of exercise and having a diet high in carbohydrates.
High triglyceride levels are a testimony to high LDL levels and low HDL levels.Just like your blood pressure, your cholesterol levels too need to be regularly checked.Knowing your cholesterol levels, along with accurate family history, and other necessary facts can help your doctor pinpoint exactly what you need to do bring the levels under control. Here are some ways you can control your cholesterol levels.
One of the biggest reasons for high cholesterol is a bad diet. Having a diet low in animal fats and high in fruit and vegetables can help lower your cholesterol levels. Vegetable oils like olive oil and fish can also help so can reducing foods with saturated fats from your diet.
A daily workout of at least thirty minutes can help drastically reduce risks borne by high cholesterol levels. They help your body burn the excess fat and reduce the formation of plaque.
Stop smoking and moderate alcohol
Cigarette smoking causes the cell’s capacity for absorbing oxygen low, increasing the constriction on an artery. While a glass or two of alcohol some times can be healthy regular heavy drinking can cause high cholesterol.
Keep your blood pressure moderated
A low salt diet and regular exercise will help keep your blood pressure under control. Moderating it on a regular basis will help you keep track of your health and better guard against the effects of high cholesterol levels.
So, if you haven’t had your LDL and HDL cholesterol levels and triglyceride levels checked yet, go do that today. Arm yourself against high cholesterol and the many diseases it brings.