Understanding the Problem
Cholesterol is a kind of fat that is found naturally in the body (blood cholesterol) or is generated through certain foods we eat (food cholesterol). It is a vital substance (lipid) which acts as the building block for the cells, hormones and vitamin D. 80% of the cholesterol in the body is generated by the liver and the remaining is produced by the breakdown of food we eat. Cholesterol can be classified into two types;
LDL (low density lipoproteins): this is considered to be bad cholesterol as it leads to accumulation within the artery walls
HDL (high density lipoproteins): this is considered to be good cholesterol because it removes LDL from the arteries
When the level of cholesterol increases in the body, it alleviates the chances of cardiovascular disease, stroke or a heart attack. Excess of cholesterol causes the accumulation of plaque in the arteries which in turn restricts the flow of blood. This may also lead to the formation of blood clots which can result in brain or heart stroke. Therefore, it is imperative that we maintain an ideal level of cholesterol in the body by following a healthy lifestyle and reduce the intake of foods which are laden with fats.
- High B.P and stress
- High intake of saturated fatty acids such as red meat, full-fat dairy products etc, hydrogenated oils, fast food.
- Sedentary lifestyle
- Smoking and alcohol
- Hereditary or a medical history of heart disease
- Post menopausal changes in female body