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How To Manage Your Cholesterol

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High cholesterol is a leading cause of heart disease in the developed world. However, it is a necessary, functional substance within the human body. If well managed, bodily cholesterol can be maintained at optimum, healthy levels.
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A basic understanding of cholesterol and its function in the body is an important element of managing your cholesterol levels and ensuring they stay within healthy parameters.
Cholesterol is a waxy substance which requires a method of transport to move around the body. This transporter comes in the form of two major types of lipoprotein, High Density Lipiprotein (HDL) and Low Density Lipoprotein (LDL), known as 'good' and 'bad' cholesterol respectively.
An excess of LDL cholesterol in the bloodstream can result in cholesterol attaching itself to the walls of the arteries. This results in so-called 'plaque' building up and causing 'atherosclerosis' (narrowing of the arteries); a leading cause of heart attacks and strokes.
HDL cholesterol's primary function is to return surplus cholesterol to the liver where it is metabolised and readied for removal from the body. Hence the 'good' cholesterol label and the recommendation that foods containing HDL cholesterol be eaten on a regular basis.
High cholesterol is primarily the result of poor dietary habits and a lack of exercise. However, high cholesterol can also be hereditary or genetic, running within certain groups such as family units.
Managing high cholesterol can be approached in a number of different ways. The most common treatment is the implementation of an improved diet including high levels of fibre, limiting saturated fats and LDL-rich foods and adding HDL-rich foods including Omega-3 oils.
Cholesterol-lowering medications such as statins, Ezetimibe, Niacin and Aspirin are often prescribed to those at risk of heart attacks and strokes.
Eliminating unhealthy habits such as smoking and beginning a program of regular exercise (after consulting your doctor) are also highly effective methods of managing and reducing high cholesterol.
High cholesterol is a treatable and manageable condition. If positive steps are taken to remove risk factors in your life it can be brought to healthy levels and maintained in the long run.
Have a check-up at least once or twice a year to monitor your cholesterol.
Adding high fibre foods to your diet is a simple, inexpensive and effective method of managing cholesterol.
Add oil-rich fish to your diet as it is an excellent source of Omega-3 fatty acids which can be effective in improving heart health.


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