Cholesterol is a type of fat produced by the liver. It enables the functionality of cells and body organs. Some foods, especially animal products like cheese, meat, and milk among others contain cholesterol. Useful as it is in organ growth, too much cholesterol leads to heart and circulatory diseases.
Types of Cholesterol
Lipoproteins are molecules that carry cholesterol in the body. There are High Density Lipoproteins (HDL) and Low Density Lipoproteins (LDL), which make the two types of cholesterol.
- LDL is bad cholesterol that leads to coronary and artery diseases. Too much LDL forms substances in the body called plaques. They clog arteries preventing circulation of blood in the body because of thinned vessels.
- HDL is the good cholesterol that ensures good blood circulation in the body. It redirects excess cholesterol in the body back to the liver where it is produced so that it can be flushed out of the system.
From these two types of cholesterol, it is evident that not all cholesterol is bad in the body. High levels of HDL protect the body from heart and circulatory diseases.
Healthy Ways to Obtain Good fats
- Control your weight
Weight gain prevents HDL cholesterol from being effective in flushing out excess fats. Cut weight if you need to, to maintain steady body weight.
- Eat healthy fats
Good cholesterols can be obtained from unsaturated fatty foods like fish, which has omega 3 fatty acids that increase HDL, simultaneously lowering LDL. Nuts and avocadoes also contain cholesterol-controlling substances.
- Engage in physical activities
Whether it is doing exercises or just keeping the body active, physical activities increases good cholesterol in the body.
It is important for you to do a cholesterol test to know your cholesterol type. Bad cholesterol can be managed to reduce health risks by adjusting your lifestyle and aiming for good cholesterol.