Cholesterol is a fatty substance which is mainly produced in the body. Although cholesterol plays a vital role in the body, too much can be harmful. Indeed, it can significantly increase your risk of having a heart attack and a stroke as the cholesterol restricts the flow of blood around the body.
There are two types of cholesterol, (LDL) low-density lipoprotein and (HDL) high-density lipoprotein. Low-density lipoprotein cholesterol is the harmful type, whereas High-density lipoprotein has protective properties.
What Causes High Cholesterol?
A bad diet is one of the major causes of high cholesterol, especially diets that are high in saturated fats. Saturated fat is found in a range of food types including: fatty cuts of meat, cheese and pastries. According to statistics a fifth of the UK's population consume to much saturated fat.
Health conditions can also increase your risks, such as diabetes and high blood pressure.Smoking can also cause high cholesterol as some of the chemical in cigarettes can restrict the arteries.
Tips for Lowering Cholesterol
High blood cholesterol levels are often caused by an unbalanced diet, such as sites that too much saturated fat. Foods such as oily fish, beans, oats and nuts may be beneficial for those who want to reduce their cholesterol. Taking regular exercise is also recommended, as this can increase HDL cholesterol.
As well as lifestyle changes, medication may also be recommended if cholesterol is particularly high. There are a range of medicines available that can improve your cholesterol levels, such as statins, niacin and aspirin.
If you are concerned about your cholesterol, you should visit your doctor. They will be able to give you bespoke advice on how to prevent higher cholesterol, or on how to decrease cholesterol if it is already high.
There are also many online resources with advice on healthy eating for those with cholesterol concerns.
Products can be purchased online, such as fat binders to assist with weight loss and supplements to help with cholesterol reduction. Some sites include user reviews, which can be particularly helpful as it may give you some idea of the effectiveness. Tests are also available for purchase online, so you can monitor your own cholesterol.
There are also online support communities where you can discuss cholesterol with others who may have, or have had raised cholesterol. This could be useful for getting advice on how others have managed to get the condition under control.
- There is both good and bad cholesterol
- More than half of the United States population may have raised cholesterol to some extent
- Lifestyle changes can help