Honest Answers About Cholesterol Levels and Health
Honest answers about cholesterol levels and health is an important topic, particularly if you have a family history of cardiovascular disease or high cholesterol levels. For these high risk individuals most experts suggest checking blood cholesterol levels as early as a person 25th birthday. If cholesterol levels are found to be normal, the test should be repeated every 5 or ten years. On the other hand if cholesterol levels are elevated the results should be evaluated and a cholesterol lowering action plan put into place.
A person’s cholesterol is determined by a combination of genetics and lifestyle. When blood cholesterol is high modifying lifestyle choices such as diet and inactivity should be a primary focus. Hopefully, these modifications will bring cholesterol back into more normal levels. Studies show that diet alone can reduce bad cholesterol levels by an impressive 35 percent in a few short weeks.
A total blood cholesterol level of less than 200 is considered ideal; 200 to 239 is borderline high; and 240 or above is considered high. Your doctor will administer a simple blood test to determine which category you fall into.
Cholesterol itself is a fat like substance which is required for healthy body function. Enough cholesterol is produced by the liver to maintain normal healthy levels. Due to the fact that cholesterol and blood do not mix this fatty substance needs help making its way around the body. This job falls to two types of lipoproteins; LDL (bad cholesterol) and HDL (good cholesterol). LDL is like the hapless taxi driver who is always dropping his patrons off at the wrong address. Where HDL not only gets is patrons to their destinations but may even pick up a few of LDLs riders along the way. Some experts believe that by simply elevating HDL you can substantially reduce your risks of atherosclerosis, heart attack, and stroke. HDL levels above 60 are considered healthy; 40 to 59 is slightly low; and less than 40 is too low.
What Next? Lowering cholesterol levels, in most cases, is about changing old habits, adopting new healthier habits, and enlisting the help of convention medications such as statins or natural cholesterol reducing remedies if needed. Put simply, this basically means finding ways to increase HDL (good cholesterol) and decreasing LDL (bad cholesterol levels). Certainly the aforementioned statin drugs will be one of your options but they do carry a number of serious label warnings. The side effect risk have made natural cholesterol reduction supplements containing such beneficial ingredients as lecithin oil, pumpkin seem oil, D-limonene, phytosterols, and antioxidants such as selenium, theaflavin, and tea catechins an alternative treatment option worth considering.