What is Cholesterol

Cholesterol is a type of lipid or fat which is a waxy material that is manufactured in your liver and is also found in meat as well as dairy products. Your body necessitates at least some cholesterol to function at its optimum as cholesterol forms an indispensable part of your cell membranes and it is also necessary to synthesise vitamin D, bile acids as well as hormones. However, too much cholesterol is damaging. Cholesterol is a chief part of the plaque that is the cause of the hardening and the narrowing of the arteries in atherosclerosis and it is the underlying cause of strokes and heart attacks.

When blood cholesterol levels are tested, the total cholesterol, as well as the different kinds of cholesterol is determined.

Because lipids are incapable of travelling through the bloodstream on its own, cholesterol travels by fastening to a protein and forming a little package which is known as lipoprotein.
The thickness of a lipoprotein is determined by its lipid-to-protein quotient.
A low-density lipoprotein (LDL) has a high ratio of lipid-to-protein and is predominantly high in cholesterol.
A high-density lipoprotein (HDL) has more protein in relation to its lipid content.

Types of Choleserol

LDL Cholesterol:

LDL cholesterol is considered to be the “unhealthy” or bad cholesterol that is found in the fatty deposits in the arteries and can cause heart disease and heart attacks; in other words, the higher the LDL level, the greater the risk of heart disease.

HDL Cholesterol:

HDL cholesterol is considered to be the “healthy” cholesterol that assists to clear excess cholesterol from the blood and arteries and then back to the liver. The lower the HDL level, the higher the risk for heart disease.

Learn more about good and bad cholesterol by reading our “difference between HDL (GOOD) & LDL (BAD) Cholesterols” article.

03 September 2020

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