Cholesterol and a Healthy Heart

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Cholesterol is required to maintain healthy body functions as it supports the body’s cells in transporting signals around the body. However too much cholesterol may have an adverse affect on your health and could put you at risk of heart disease.

What is Cholesterol?

Cholesterol is a fat like substance made by the liver which forms the outer membrane of the body’s cells which circulates in the blood. Cholesterol is vital for normal body function because the body’s cells are used to insulate nerve fibres as well as making hormones which carry signals around the body.

Measuring Cholesterol

Cholesterol is transported around in the blood by two main types of protein: low density lipoproteins (LDL) which carry ¾ of the cholesterol and high density lipoproteins (HDL).

  • LDL is bad cholesterol as although it transports cholesterol from the liver to the cells that need it, if there is too much supply then it can build up in the artery walls and put you at risk of a heart attack or stroke.
  • HDL is good cholesterol as this protein works to transport cholesterol away from the cells and back to the liver where it is either broken down or excreted.

Blood tests are the best way to measure levels of cholesterol in the body. Healthy levels of cholesterol should ideally be around 5.2 millimoles per litre with your HDL level as high as possible.

High Cholesterol and Heart Disease

Although the body needs cholesterol to maintain vital body functions, high blood cholesterol levels can increase the risk of atherosclerosis (furring up of the arteries), cardiovascular disease or even a stroke.

Blood cholesterol levels can be influenced by diet and lifestyle. High levels of cholesterol are contained in eggs, offal and shellfish but saturated fats are the main culprits as once inside the body, the liver turns these fats into a likely excessive level of cholesterol.

Symptoms & Causes

There are no clear symptoms of high cholesterol levels and most diagnoses are made from a blood test. When levels are very high, cholesterol may appear as yellow nodules beneath the skin, elbows, knees, or under the eyes.

Levels of blood cholesterol are affected by the manufacture of cholesterol by the body, so high intakes of saturated fats as well as lifestyle (weight, smoking, lack of exercise) all contribute to high cholesterol.

Policosanol

Policosanol is a naturally derived supplement originating from plant waxes such as sugarcane, yam and event beeswax. The wax is a fatty plant alcohol mixture of octacosanol, hexacosanol and triacontanol. As a relatively new and innovative nutritional supplement, Policosanol is used to support a healthy heart and cardiovascular system.

Policosanol & Cholesterol

In combination with the right amount of exercise and a healthy diet that suits your age, shape and size, Policosanol can support a healthy lifestyle by assisting you in the maintenance of a healthy heart. Policosanol can help to support the body in lowering LDL and increasing HDL cholesterol levels, thereby helping the body to maintain healthy blood cholesterol levels.

Only a Doctor can advise you of your need to adapt your cholesterol levels, so if you have discussed the maintenance of a healthy heart with your health practitioner, you might consider using Policosanol as a complimentary therapy to support your healthy diet and exercise regime.

 

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