What is Considered High Cholesterol?
Cholesterol (from the Ancient Greek Chube- (bile) and stereos (solid)) is a fat-like, waxy material that is located in all cells of the human body. The body requires cholesterol for normal production of hormones, vitamins, and substances that help you digest food. Your body can produce the required cholesterol for its proper operation. At the same time, cholesterol can come with the food you eat.
Cholesterol goes through the bloodstream in small particles, so-called lipoproteins. These particles consist of lipid or fat from the inside and proteins on the outside. There are two types of lipoproteins that transport cholesterol throughout the human body. They are low-density lipoproteins (LDL) and high-density lipoproteins (HDL). It is very important to have a healthy level of both types of lipoproteins.
LDL cholesterol is considered bad cholesterol. High level of this type of cholesterol leads to an accretion of cholesterol in arteries. HDL cholesterol is considered good cholesterol. It carries cholesterol from all parts of your body to the liver. One of the liver’s functions is to remove the cholesterol from the human body.
♦ What Is High Blood Cholesterol?
High level of cholesterol means that you have too much cholesterol in the blood, 240 mg/dl and above. This condition has no symptoms or visible signs. Thus, usually, most of people are unaware that their level of cholesterol is high.
People with high blood cholesterol have more chances of getting such heart diseases as coronary artery disease. High level of LDL cholesterol in your blood dramatically increases your chances of getting a heart disease. In return, high level of HDL cholesterol appropriately reduces the chances of getting a heart disease.
When plaque mounts up inside the arteries, it causes coronary heart disease. The plaque itself consists of cholesterol, calcium, fat, and other substances. When plaque builds up in the arteries, it can lead to such disease as atherosclerosis.
♦ Factors That May Rise Cholesterol Level
An unhealthy lifestyle can lead to a higher level of cholesterol. Physical exercises and diet can decrease the quantity of fat in your blood and its way of circulation over the body. Here are some factors that can either rise your level of blood cholesterol or impact the balance of good to bad cholesterol:
- Eating fat food
- Ignoring physical activities
- Being obese or overweight
- Smoking and Alcohol
- Having a big waist circumference.
Sometimes our lifestyle can affect our genetic makeup. For example, if you eat much greasy food or have an excess weight, it may switch on the genes that are in charge of increasing the level of cholesterol. By simply changing the diet, you may see a reduction of your cholesterol level in a matter of a few weeks. It is important to proceed with these positive changes and follow certain rules in order to keep your cholesterol low. Do not expect fast changes. It can take up to six months to establish new healthy habits.
Decreasing your cholesterol level may be a slow process. But it is possible to reduce or stop the plaque buildup in your arteries. It also decreases the plaque rupture threat and blood clots. Small steps can lead to big changes in your health and life.
Cholesterol Numbers or levels:
Total Blood Cholesterol Level
LDL (Bad) Blood Cholesterol Level