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A delicate combination of steroid and alcohol, Cholesterol, also a combination of a lipid that is found in cell membranes of all of our body tissues. Cholesterol is also transported in the blood of all animals. You might derive that the name cholestral comes from the simple combination of the words alcohol and steroid however it actually dates back to Greece, (like most everything else). First discovered in 1784, cholesterol was found in a solid form in gallstones.
Popular belief tells us that cholesterol is dietary in origin, however the truth is actually that it is synthesized internally. Examples of tissue that have densely-packed membranes are: the liver, the spinal cord and the brain.
If high cholesterol is ever something that has been a problem for you, or you are interesting in keeping your cholesterol down here are a few simple steps that you can follow: - If you are overweight - Lose weight - Participate in more physical activity - Follow a low-cholesterol, low saturated fat diet
The three steps outlined above will aid in more than just lowering your cholesterol. They will also make your heart and lungs stronger, as well eliminating excess stress that you may be putting on your body. All of these things will help you to live a healthier and longer life.
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Using A Cholesterol Test Kit At Home
Blood cholesterol testing is usually performed with the help of health specialists. However, with various home medical supplies available on the market, you can now monitor your cholesterol levels in the cozy ambiance of your house with the aid of a home cholesterol and blood monitoring test kit. But what are the benefits of having a cholesterol test kit at home?
As a result, it is imperative that people maintain low cholesterol levels to reduce this risk.
Why use a home test kit?
One great benefit of a cholesterol test kit is that you are able to identify whether you need to make changes in your lifestyle to reduce your cholesterol. It has been identified that the risk of heart attack is higher when your blood cholesterol is above normal. Using home medical kits to monitor your heart health regularly is a practical way to determine if your cholesterol level is normal.
Preferably, you should have your cholesterol examined at least every 3 to 5 years. Home tests can be regularly used to keep a check for any sign of increase in cholesterol when it may not be easily noticeable. A visit to the doctor just to check your cholesterol level may be time-consuming. And because of this a home cholesterol test kit can be a more efficient approach to getting peace of mind.
The application of cholesterol test kit for home use has answered the consumers' wish to have a cheap option to monitor cholesterol on a regular basis without visiting their doctor. Precise and simple to use, they can be an early indication of potential problems.
Though heart disease and high blood are deemed as the most common threats to people, early prevention and detection of symptoms through home cholesterol test kits can help win the campaign. But, even if you see no clear symptoms of high cholesterol, being conscious on your eating habits and keeping an eye on your overall health is essential for long term health.
Kathryn Whittaker has an interest in Health related subjects. To find out how you can lower high cholesterol please visit this Lowering Cholesterol site.
Not everyone is conscious about how and what they eat. Because of this, many people suffer from degenerative diseases, which are caused by bad lifestyle choices. Too much fat in food can cause the body's cholesterol levels to rise. High cholesterol is the primary reason for heart diseases, being overweight and high blood pressure etc. Considering how serious the damage that high cholesterol can be to your health, it has become important that people be mindful of what they can or cannot eat in order to maintain a lower cholesterol level in accordance with what the human body is required to have.
What is cholesterol?
Having cholesterol in the body is important. Usually, our cholesterol levels are related to the food we eat. Many of the foods we eat contain some saturated fats that influence cholesterol levels. An increase of the body's normal cholesterol level can be detrimental to health. That's why more often than not people with high percentages of cholesterol are advised to practice a diet that can help them lower their cholesterol levels.
Lower cholesterol plays a key role in healthful living. An excess of cholesterol in the blood can cause the arteries to clot. And this clotting of the arteries may lead to a disease known as atherosclerosis. If this continues, the blood vessel becomes diminutive to the point that it could affect the flow of the blood through the veins, thereby resulting in heart attack or stroke. Furthermore, greater damage can be experienced if you have other ailments like obesity, hypertensions, and diabetes.
Many alternatives for reducing high cholesterol incidents are being developed. However, there are natural approaches that can be adopted by everyone.
To lower cholesterol the natural way, you are likely to be advised to follow a sensible diet and exercise scheme. A sensible diet means adhering to a low cholesterol diet. This would involve eating foods that are rich in vitamins and minerals. Based on medical studies foods like avocados, garlic and olive oil can help reduce cholesterol. Fiber-rich foods are also proven to reduce the risk for high cholesterol. Stay away from fried foods; grilling your food is better for your health. Keeping fit is the simplest therapy that everyone can do. Other natural options that can prevent excessive cholesterol is steering clear of cigarette smoking and drinking.
Natural ways to reduce cholesterol can bring significant changes to your health - changes that are vital to living a hearty and healthy life. If you suffer with high cholesterol, you should consult your primary care physician prior to making any changes in your diet or lifestyle.
Kathryn Whittaker has an interest in Health related subjects. To find out how you can lower high cholesterol please visit this Lowering Cholesterol site.
Coconut oil does not contain toxic unsaturated oil that other oils do. It is loaded with healthy benefits that include lowering your cholesterol and your weight. If you find yourself in the "50 and over" group, should your cholesterol and weight rank higher than your retirement plan?
Coconut oil has a pleasant taste, does not go rancid (even after a year) like other oils and has health benefits instead of health detriments. Civilizations consuming coconut oil without the trans fat oils are healthier, have less colon problems, less cancer, do not battle weight loss and have less heart disease.
Coconut oil has antioxidant properties due to the lack of oxidation of the oil in the body thereby reducing the need to supplement Vitamin E that is normally used up in the oxidation process. The general studies indicate that regular consumption of coconut oil reduces cholesterol to a normal level by converting cholesterol into pregnenolone.
Ever since "trans fat" became a dirty food, we have looked for replacement oils that will deliver our favorite "bad" food to the table without sacrificing the good taste. It has been established that our best bet to stay healthy is to eat healthy. Eating healthy includes eliminating harmful oils and supplementing our diet with foods that includes basic building block nutrients that have eroded from our farms and gardens.
The trans fats stay in the bloodstream and eventually collect as fat in the vessels and body. Coconut oil goes straight to the liver and is converted to energy. This "good" oil speeds up your body's metabolic rate, causes you to burn calories and in this manner you will loose weight.
Coconut oil has a laundry list of healthy benefits. Using coconut oil as a supplement, 3-4 tablespoonfuls a day, produces sufficient lauric acid. Lauric acid produces monolaurin. Monolaurin is a natural antiviral that kills viruses. This is a huge support to the immune system.
Cooking with coconut oil will eliminate harmful fatty chains that manifests themselves as trans fatty acids in the body. If you are reducing trans fat in your body you also raise HDL ("good") cholesterol levels and lower LDL ("bad") cholesterol levels in your bloodstream.
The medicinal use worldwide of coconut oil includes: supplement to prevent osteoporosis, sore throat, kidney stone dissolving, reduce swelling and for weight loss.
The results are clear, nutritionists and dietitians agree that coconut oil is one of the healthiest supplements you can consume. Civilizations that have used coconut oil are generally healthier and do not have the many western nation diseases such as heart disease, blood pressure issues, blood sugar, obesity and diabetes.
Coconut oil can be used for cooking and frying. Battle weight loss the natural way. Replace all oil such as butter, margarine, vegetable oil or shortening with coconut oil. Warmed to 76 degrees, coconut is liquid and can be used in salad dressing. You can also use it as a skin lotion. It is liquid on contact to the skin.
It may be a while before it is time to make another new years resolution. Don't wait, for your health's sake, make a change now that will change the "quality of your life" of tomorrow.
What IS Cholesterol?
Cholesterol is a soft, waxy substance that's stored in the fat (lipid) content of one's blood stream. It's actually important to have a certain amount of "good" cholesterol in one's system.
Playing a central role in the biochemical process, cholesterol, is best known for the association of cardiovascular disease with various lipoprotein cholesterol transport patterns and high levels of cholesterol in the blood.
Cholesterol, and our other body fats, cannot dissolve in our blood. They must be transported by special carriers called lipoproteins. While there are numerous kinds (too many to cover here), the two that are most important are the high-density lipoproteins (HDL) and the low-density lipoproteins (LDL). There is a third kind, which is referred to as Lp(a), which can increase one's risk of heart attack and stroke. We'll cover that one here, as well.
HDL, LDL, & Lp(a)...What ARE These?
High-density lipoproteins (HDL) are known as "good cholesterol". Most experts agree that HDL moves the cholesterol from the arteries to the liver, where it is broken down and leaves the body through the natural evacuation process. A higher HDL level seems to reduce the risk of heart attack or stroke. Keep in mind, though, that a lower HDL level in one's body (-40 mg/dL in men, -50 mg d/L in women) is a warning signal of greater risk of one or both.
HDL seems to remove excess cholesterol from the plaques which build up in one's blood vessels, thereby inhibiting or slowing their growth. This is what makes it so important to the human body. Approximately 1/3 to 1/4 of the cholesterol in our bodies is carried by the HDL.
Low-density lipoproteins (LDL) are the major transporters of cholesterol in our blood. One can experience a build up on the walls of the arteries which supply blood to our hearts and brains, if too much LDL enters the blood stream. When combined with other substances, it forms plaques. Plaques are hard, thick coatings that can clog one's arteries and decrease blood flow to the heart or the brain. Should the blood not move swiftly enough, there is danger of a blood clot forming near the plaques. When this occurs in the arteries leading to the heart, one is at greater risk of a heart attack. If it happens in the arteries which lead to one's brain, there is a higher risk of stroke.
If one's LDL level is 160 mg/dL or higher, this is an indication of a greater risk of heart disease. And if one has already been diagnosed with heart disease, it is strongly recommended that one maintain a level of less than 100 mg/dL.
A little known (by the general population) lipoprotein that can also cause a greater risk is the Lp(a) cholesterol lipoprotein. This is a generic variation of plasma (the "fluid" which carries the blood cells through one's blood stream) LDL. When one's Lp(a) level is higher, one can more quickly develop the plaque build up which physicians and specialists refer to as "arthersclerosis". Although there has been no conclusive evidence drawn as to WHY Lp(a) contributes to the increased risk of heart disease, it is commonly believed that the natural lesions which occur in our artery walls may contain substances that interact with it. This may lead to the build up of the fatty deposits.
From Where Do We Get Cholesterol?
The general consensus is that the human body is capable of producing the cholesterol that one needs to remain healthy. The body - most especially the liver - produces roughly 1,000 mg per day. Therefore the cholesterol consumed (by the average person eating the typical foods such as whole milk dairy products, eggs, meat, poultry, fish and seafood) is not really necessary to maintain the healthy level which one needs.
Two of the biggest culprits which contribute to the excessive consumption of cholesterol are transfats and saturated fats. But other fats consumed in foods can also raise blood cholesterol. While some of the excess fat is removed from the body by the liver, most heart specialists recommend that the average person limit himself/herself to less than 300 mg daily. And if one has been diagnosed with heart disease, that level should be less than 200 mg daily. If one has been diagnosed with extremely high cholesterol, even more drastic measures may be necessary to bring it under control.
How Do I Control My Intake?
A proven and accepted measure of control is to limit one's intake to no more that 6 ounces of lean meat/fish/poultry daily, and to consume only low fat/no fat dairy products. Effective substitutes for the protein necessary for good health can be found in beans and vegetables with high protein content. Two excellent sources for determining which foods have high protein content can be found at:
It is also recommended that one adopt a regular exercise regimen. Even a moderate amount of daily activity can help to increase the movement of blood through one's body. Physical activities such as leisurely walking, gardening, light yard work, housework and slow dancing are often prescribed as ideally suited for those who need a daily routine to help control the cholesterol levels.
A more intense regimen can include brisk walking, jogging, swimming and weight-lifting. Aerobic exercising is an excellent way to increase one's breathing and heart rates.
Side benefits of a regularly scheduled exercise program can include weight control, reducing one's risk of developing diabetes, and helping to keep one's blood pressure at a healthy level. Regular moderate to intense exercise can also help to strengthen one's heart and lungs.
To Smoke or Not to Smoke...
Most physicians and specialists recommend that no one smoke. And it has been proven that tobacco smoking increases the risk of heart disease. One's intake of oxygen, which is a necessary component for good vascular circulation and health, is drastically reduced. Plus, smoking is detrimental to HDL cholesterol levels and increases the possibility of blood clots, not to mention the risks of causing cancer in one's body.
The Effects of Alcohol on Cholesterol Levels
The moderate consumption of alcohol has shown, in some studies, to actually promote higher HDL cholesterol levels. With that said one must weigh the risks of alcoholism, obesity, stroke, high blood pressure, some forms of cancer, and sometimes depression. Exercise moderation (not more than 1-2 drinks daily for men, not more than 1 drink daily for women). And if you don't drink, don't start. There are better and safer alternatives for controlling one's cholesterol.
- HDL is "good" cholesterol - LDL is "bad" cholesterol - An exercise regimen can help in lowering LDL and increasing HDL - Cholesterol can be controlled with a sensible diet, for many people - Smoking can increase the risks of lower HDL levels and the possibility of blood clots
Consult your physician or health care provider before embarking on any exercise regimen, or the consumption of alcohol, as a method to control one's cholesterol. He or she can direct you to what steps you need to take in order to ensure the best results for your efforts.
Have an annual screening (usually a blood drawing) to determine your cholesterol levels. Be sure to discuss family history and other issues which your doctor may want to know before deciding whether or not you should be checked for the Lp(a) lipoproteins. He or she can better determine your risks, the diagnosis, and possible treatment (which may include prescription medication) when fully informed.
Your Independent guide to Cholesterol
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