The Evil Side Of Cholesterol
What is cholesterol ?
Cholesterol is a waxy and fat-like substance that is found in all the cells in the body. Our body needs cholesterol to produce vitamin D and make some hormones as well as help in digestion. The cholesterol comes from the foods derived from animals such as meat and poultry that all contain cholesterol known as dietary cholesterol.
Is Cholesterol good?
The answer is yes, our body needs cholesterol in blood circulation and builds your body cells, digestion and produces hormones which are mentioned above. However, if your body has too much cholesterol in your blood, the cholesterol will combine with other substances in the blood from plaque. The plaque will stick to the walls of your arteries and this is known as atherosclerosis. This can lead to coronary artery disease which causes your coronary artery disease to become narrow or blocked.
What is the good cholesterol and bad cholesterol? There are two types of cholesterol which are called LDL cholesterol and HDL cholesterol.
1. LDL cholesterol is known as low-density lipoprotein which is called “bad” cholesterol. This is because the LDL can lead to the buildup of plaque in your arteries and can cause coronary artery disease. (The evil side of cholesterol)
2. HDL cholesterol is known as high-density lipoprotein which is called “good” cholesterol. This is because HDL carries the cholesterol from other parts of your body to your liver and your livers will remove the cholesterol from your body (Barterl et.al 2009).
What can cause high cholesterol?
1. Unhealthy eating habits
Those people who are eating a lot of junk foods will cause high cholesterol. This is because those foods contain saturated fat and it can be found in dairy products such as meat, chocolate, baked goods and some processed foods. If you like to consume those foods, Congrats! These foods will raise your LDL (bad) cholesterol.
2. Lack of exercise
If you are a office worker with lots of sitting and little exercise. This can lower your HDL (good) cholesterol. If your HDL is lower than your LDL will be higher. Therefore, the consequence is imagable and predictable. Being overweight will increase LDL and block your blood vessels.
3. Smoking & drinking alcohol
If you are not a smoker, congrats to yourself! Smoking and drinking alcohol can actually lower HDL cholesterol especially women. Besides, it also raises your LDL (bad) cholesterol.
Your cholesterol level will increase as you get older. The fact is your liver becomes less able to remove LDL cholesterol.
Those people with diabetes will have high blood sugar and it will contribute to increased LDL cholesterol and lower HDL. High blood sugar also will damage your liver and the lining of your arteries.
What can you do to prevent getting High cholesterol ?
1. Change your diet
Above mentioned that a poor diet can raise your LDL cholesterol, diets with too much saturated fat is the main cause for you to gain high blood cholesterol. You are recommended to take some healthy foods such as cereal, protein shake, berries or whole bread in the early morning. You can refer to the surprising truth about eating breakfast.
2. Exercise regularly
You are recommended to exercise regularly, we understand that you might have no time to exercise! What can you do is brisk walking 30 minutes each day or every single hour walk around in your office to prevent long sitting. This might help you to lower down your LDL (NIH 2020).
3. Take supplements (scientific proven)
Barleans Double Strength Fish Oil
According to (Harari et.al 2020) emphasize that fish oil can actually lower your LDL in your body and reduce the blood triglyceride levels. Besides, fish oil is also proven that can improve your HDL in your body. If you are looking for what brand of fish oil is better to consume, Barleans double strength fish oil from (MycareMalaysia) might be one of your choices.
The researchers found out that flaxseed preparations can actually lower LDL in 2009. The scientific research even stated that flaxseed found modest improvements in HDL cholesterol.
You are suggested to take a test for your own cholesterol level to understand your body conditions and below is for your references. Aware about the importance of good cholesterol and lowering your bad cholesterol is necessary. You might need to start taking care of your body today if you haven’t started yet.
Barter, P., Gotto, A.M., LaRosa, J.C., Maroni, J., Szarek, M., Grundy, S.M., Kastelein, J.J.P., Bittner, V. and Fruchart, J.-C. 2007, “HDL Cholesterol, Very Low Levels of LDL Cholesterol, and Cardiovascular Events”. New England Journal of Medicine, vol. 357, no. 13, pp 1301–1310.
Harari, A., Leikin Frenkel, A., Barshack, I., Sagee, A., Cohen, H., Kamari, Y., Harats, D., Kandel Kfir, M. and Shaish, A. 2020, Addition of fish oil to atherogenic high fat diet inhibited atherogenesis while olive oil did not, in LDL receptor KO mice. Nutrition, Metabolism and Cardiovascular Diseases, vol. 30, no. 4, pp.709–716.
Mayo Clinic, “HDL cholesterol”, viewed 23 September 2020, <https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/high-blood-cholesterol/symptoms-causes/syc-20350800>.
Mycare Malaysia, “Barleans Double Strength Fish Oil”, viewed 23 September 2020, <https://mycare.com.my/estore/Barleans-Double-Strength-Fish-Oil>.
Mycare Malaysia, “The surprising truth about eating breakfast”, viewed 24 September 2020, <https://mycare.com.my/blog/2020/08/18/the-surprising-truth-about-eating-breakfast-2/>>.
Mediline 2020, “What is Atherosclerosis”, viewed 24 September 2020, <https://medlineplus.gov/atherosclerosis.html>.
Mediline 2020, “Coronary Artery Disease”, viewed 24 September 2020, <https://medlineplus.gov/coronaryarterydisease.html>.
National center for complementary and integrative health, “Flaxseed and Flaxseed Oil”, viewed 24 Septmeber 2020, <https://www.nccih.nih.gov/health/flaxseed-and-flaxseed-oil>.
National center for complementary and integrative health, “5 tips you should know about High blood cholesterol”, viewed 24 September 2020, <https://www.nccih.nih.gov/health/tips/tips-what-you-should-know-about-high-blood-cholesterol>.