The relationship between Cholesterol and Heart Disease


Apart from essential fatty acids, there is no specific requirement for fats in the body. Therefore, the average diet contains far too much fat, and this can cause problems.

Cholesterol if carried around the body by lipoproteins. Too much of this in the body and there can be all sorts of problems.

Too much cholesterol in the blood, and fat can be deposited on the artery walls, causing thickening of the arteries and likely to be followed by cardiovascular disease and coronary heart disease. Too much in the liver and it can lead to gall stones. Several studies have proven that there is a direct link between heart disease and high cholesterol.

When there is too much cholesterol in the blood, it builds up in the walls of the arteries causing a form of heart disease. The arteries become narrowed and blood flow to the heart muscle is slowed down or blocked. The blood carries oxygen to the heart, and if enough blood and oxygen cannot reach the heart, people may suffer chest pain. If the blood supply to a portion of the heart is completely cut off by a blockage, the result is a heart attack.

There are two forms of cholesterol that most Americans are familiar with: Low-density lipoprotein (LDL or “bad” cholesterol) and high-density lipoprotein (HDL or “good” cholesterol.) These are the form in which cholesterol travels in the blood.

LDL is the main source of artery-clogging plaque. HDL actually works to clear cholesterol from the blood.

High cholesterol itself does not cause any symptoms; so many people are unaware that their cholesterol levels are too high. Therefore, it is important to find out what your cholesterol numbers are because lowering cholesterol levels that are too high lessens the risk for developing heart disease and reduces the chance of a heart attack or dying of heart disease, even if you already have it. It’s important to keep an eye on the numbers.

The main three factors that affect high cholesterol are diet, lack of exercise and excess weight. With a little bit of effort to correct, cholesterol can easily be brought under control. The suggestion is to reduce the amount of saturated fat in your diet, control your diet and aim to do about 30 minutes of exercise a day.

Plenty of research has proven the link, and many also suggest that there are many more links, including cancer as one example.

As you get older, your cholesterol rises. There is nothing you can do about that, neither have you any influence on hereditary factors.

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