Heard of “bad cholesterol”? Here’s what you need to know about LDL cholesterol and how it can affect your health – maybe even kill you.
We’ve probably all heard about cholesterol and how we need to keep it down for our health, but did you know there’s a good and bad kind? Cholesterol by itself is simply a waxy substance circulating in the bloodstream.
The liver creates all the cholesterol the body needs from fats in your diet. In turn, the body uses it to create hormones, cells, and vitamin D.
While it’s important to maintain healthy levels of anything in the body, it’s important to know that there is a “good” kind of cholesterol and a “bad” kind.
HDL Cholesterol vs. LDL Cholesterol
The body has two main types of cholesterol: HDL and LDL Cholesterol.
HDL (High-Density Lipoproteins) is the “good” kind of cholesterol. It carries cholesterol from other parts of the body back to the liver so it can process the cholesterol out of the body.
On the other hand, LDL (Low-Density Lipoproteins) is the “bad” kind as high levels of it can build up in the arteries, resulting in heart disease. The body needs a healthy level of both kinds of cholesterol.
High Cholesterol and Heart Health
When you hear people saying you need to lower your cholesterol, they are usually referring to LDL cholesterol. If these levels are too high, fatty deposits can stay in the body’s blood vessel walls, resulting in atherosclerosis.
Atherosclerosis happens when the blood vessels harden and get narrow, leading to poor circulation and oxygen delivery. As a result, the body can experience a heart attack as oxygen is unable to reach the heart muscle.
In addition to a heart attack, the brain can experience a stroke due to the lack of oxygen.
Maintaining Healthy Cholesterol Levels
Doctors measure cholesterol levels as the sum total of your HDL and LDL levels. The total should be less than 200 milligrams per tenth-liter of blood, or 200 mg/dL.
Moreover, an acceptable level of LDL cholesterol is anything less than 160 mg/dL, 130 mg/dL, or 100 mg/dL. The specific number will vary on a person’s individual risk factors.
On the other hand, HDL cholesterol needs to be at least 35 mg/dL – ideally higher. The more HDL the body has, the more protection it has against heart disease.
High Cholesterol Affects Millions
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), more than 73.5 millions of American have high LDL cholesterol. To put it in perspective, this is 32% of the U.S. population.
Furthermore, only 1 in 3 people who have high cholesterol have it under control and only half are receiving treatment. Those with high cholesterol double their risk of heart disease when compared to people with healthy cholesterol levels.
It’s important not to delay cholesterol testing until you’re older. Starting at age 20, everyone should visit a doctor so they can check their cholesterol levels.
Afterwards, you should check them every five years or sooner if the doctor recommends it. While you should keep an eye on your cholesterol health, it’s important to keep a closer look around age 45 for men and age 55 for women.
Things You Can Do
If you want to maintain healthy cholesterol levels, the best things you can do is exercise regularly, eat a healthy diet, and maintain a healthy weight. However, maintaining a healthy life 24/7 may be easier said than done for some people.
In addition to leading a healthy life, there are other things you can try such as adding a health supplement to your routine. For example, HeartBeet Complete is a beet powder supplement that promotes healthy cholesterol, circulation, blood pressure, and more.
It works by combining several key ingredients including beet powder, l-arginine, l-citrulline, turmeric, CoQ10, and key vitamins and minerals. Moreover, it comes in a cherry flavor that makes it easy to drink on a daily basis.
If you want to have healthy cholesterol levels, lead an overall healthy life and add some HeartBeet Complete to your routine for that extra boost.