Cholesterol an Overview
Cholesterol is a wax like type of fat that is found in all of the cells in the human body. Deferent types of fats like cholesterol are titled “lipids” and there are a list of them. Cholesterol belongs to a chemical group of lipids called Sterols. There are three types of it, low density lipoprotein (LDL), high density lipoprotein (HDL), and very low density lipoprotein (VLDL).
Sterols are a category of lipids that are distinct from all other lipids. One such sterol is cholesterol. This is a wax like soft substance composed primarily of acetyl-C0A, an acetic acid derivative and is the smallest of all fatty acids. Cholesterol is an all important structural part of cell membranes and part of the transport of lipids in the blood. It is the forerunner of bile acids required for the digestion of fats. Cholesterol also forms part of crucial endocrine secretions such as testosterone, estrogens and a form of the active vitamin D.
The amount of cholesterol in some vital parts of the body such as the brain, heart, liver and kidneys is substantially high and ponders its all important and vital role. Body cells make up cholesterol each day, roughly 700 mg, and the liver, that has the chief role of regulation of blood cholesterol, produces10% of this. In addition, cholesterol is ingested in the diet, from animal derived foods, about 200 to 300 mg, or one third of entire daily exposure. From the quantity that comes from food only about 50% is absorbed.
Of the 700 mg produced by the body close to 400 mg are utilized for the reproduction of lost bile in the stool and 50 mg for the production of hormones. The quantities of each type of cholesterol in the blood are a good indicator in forecasting the degree of danger for heart disease. The low density lipoproteins or LDLs also known as the “bad cholesterol” are the product of the liver acting as a transportation mechanism of cholesterol and other lipids to different tissues such as the muscles and vital organs including the heart.
It’s crucial that Low Density Lipoprotein levels are kept as low as possible since raised levels will in turn increase the risk of heart disease. LDL levels less than 100 to 129 mg/dL or 2.6 mmol/L are considered to be optimal. Levels between 160 - 189 mg/dL or 4.14 - 4.90 mmol/L and above are considered high, unsafe and attempts should be made to maintain them low. Levels in between those above are considered to be borderline high. Bringing down LDL levels in general includes physical exercise, dieting and the suitable medicine in order to minimize the dangers of having heart disease.
High density lipoproteins or HDL also known as the “good” cholesterol is the desirable type. The liver makes High Density Lipoproteins or HDL to transport numerous lipids and cholesterol from organs and tissues back in to itself for degradation or reprocessing. High levels of this type of cholesterol are a good sign of a healthy heart since lower amount of cholesterol is available to cause plaque formation in blood vessels. An satisfactory HDL range is between 40- 60 mg/dL or 1.04-1.56 mmol/L. Low HDL levels may lend to heart disease.
The third type of cholesterol is titled very low density lipoproteins, or VLDLs. They function is to carry cholesterol to organs and tissues in the body from the liver. They are the outcome of a combination of cholesterol and triglycerides. VLDLs are heavier than low density lipoproteins, and they are as well linked with heart disease and coronary artery disease. The best way to check cholesterol levels is with diet and physical exercise but, this can not all of the time be the case of an effectual approach. It is important if your cholesterol levels are high that you keep in touch with your health care provider for a competent opinion.
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