High Cholesterol

Cholesterol, a yellowish fatty substance, is one of the essential components of the body. 

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High Cholesterol

Cholesterol is a building block of the outer membrane of cells.  It is the principle ingredient in the digestive juice bile, in the fatty sheaths that insulate nerves and in sex hormones.  It performs many functions such as transport of fat, providing defense mechanism, protecting red blood cells and muscular membrane of the body.
Most of the cholesterol found in the body is produced in the liver.  About 20-30 % generally comes from the food we eat.  Some cholesterol is also secreted into the intestinal tract in bile & becomes mixed with the dietary cholesterol. The body excretes the extra cholesterol from the system through bowels & kidneys. Normal level of cholesterol varies between 150-250 mg per 100 ml.
The heart disease is directly linked to the level of  cholesterol in the blood & that lowering cholesterol level significantly reduces the incidence of heart attacks.  It has been estimated for every one percent reduction in cholesterol, there is a decrease in the risk of heart attacks by two percent.

Causes

Hypercholesterolaemia or increase in cholesterol is mainly digestive problem caused by rich foods such as fried foods, excessive consumption of oily foods like butter oil butter & cream, white flour, sugar, cakes etc.
Other causes of increase in cholesterol are irregularity in habits, smoking & drinking alcohol. Stress has been a major cause of increased level of cholesterol.  Adrenaline & cortison are both released in the body under stress.  This, in turn, produces a fat metabolizing reaction.
E xecutive type adrenal glands: aggressive persons produce more adrenaline than the easy going men.  Consequently, they suffer 6-8 times more heart attacks than the relaxed men.


Other sources of information for these topics.

NHLBI, High Blood Cholesterol: What You Need to Know
High blood cholesterol is one of the major risk factors for heart disease. High blood cholesterol itself does not cause symptoms, so many people are ...

High Cholesterol
High Cholesterol. We look at the symptoms, causes and treatments.

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