Wednesday, October 7, 2009

good or bad egg?

What is cholesterol? Cholesterol is a soft, waxy substance found among the lipids (fats) in the bloodstream and in all your body's cells. It's an important part of a healthy body because it's used to form cell membranes, some hormones and is needed for other functions. But a high level of cholesterol in the blood — hypercholesterolemia — is a major risk factor for coronary heart disease, which leads to heart attack.

Bad Cholesterol - LDL (low-density lipoprotein) cholesterol is "bad" cholesterol, which carries mostly fat and only a small amount of protein from the liver to other parts of the body. A high LDL cholesterol level is considered a risk factor for coronary artery disease (CAD) because, under certain conditions, it can cause hardening of the arteries (atherosclerosis).

Good Cholesterol - HDL (high-density lipoprotein) is sometimes called "good" cholesterol because it helps prevent cholesterol from building up in the arteries. HDL, which is made mostly of protein and only a small amount of fat, helps clear LDL (low-density lipoprotein), or “bad,” cholesterol from the body.

High levels of HDL appear to help protect against heart disease. A person who is at risk for heart disease may be advised to raise his or her HDL levels by eating a balanced diet, exercising and losing weight, and stopping tobacco use. In addition, medicines may be used to raise HDL levels.

How do we prevent high cholesterol?

1.) Vegetables, fruits, and whole grains are just a few of the delicious foods that you can eat on a low-cholesterol, low-fat diet. There are also many low-fat diet plans out there, just in case you need a helping hand to assist you in eating low fat. In any case, eating low fat can help you to prevent high cholesterol.

2.) Exercise has many heart healthy benefits - including helping you to prevent high cholesterol and heart disease. The good news is that, in order to see the benefits of exercise, you don't have to be a star athlete. There are many types of exercises you can do - from low-impact exercises to aerobic exercises - and all have shown some benefit in keeping your body limber and your cholesterol levels low. If you already have high cholesterol levels, exercise can be very helpful in preventing your cholesterol levels from increasing further.

3.) Quit smoking - When most people think of smoking, they mostly think about the lung diseases that go along with it. However, the damage that smoking can do goes much deeper. In fact, smoking can increase your cholesterol levels and cause heart disease. If you quit smoking now, you can prevent this from occurring, and reverse the damage that you have done if you quit now.

4.) Reduce stress - Although stress is important in helping us escape from bad situations, persistent stress could lead to heart disease. Recent research is indicating that recurrent stress could also have a an affect on your cholesterol levels. Learning how to cope with stress in your life could help keep your cholesterol levels in check and your heart healthy.

5.) What else? - There are many other ways you can prevent high cholesterol, too. Losing weight and paying attention to medications that can raise cholesterol are a few more of the important ways you can prevent your cholesterol levels and your risk of heart disease from increasing.

Egg whites anyone?

info found -

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