I've spent years researching all aspects of health and fitness trying to find out what works well for the body and what is bad for the body. Cholesterol is quite a hot topic in the health world. Many people view cholesterol as bad and the food that contain them something to stay away from.

This isn’t the case your body actually needs cholesterol to help form cell membranes and vitamin D and is an important part of our bodies complete metabolism; it’s just when your body builds up excess cholesterol that health problems occur.

The mainstream medical world seem intent on reducing cholesterol with drugs (usually statins) rather than ask the question why is the cholesterol raised in the first place? Luckily for us all there are scientists asking this exact question and they have started to discover cholesterol is produced in response to stress in the body. So the next obvious question is to find out the cause of the stress, which can often be multi faceted and often too much work for the NHS/GP’s and would cost a lot more than giving people a cheap (and dangerous in my opinion) pill.

Until this debate is clear we will just stick to what we know for sure.

So what is Cholesterol and where does it come from? (debatable topic)

Firstly it is found in food sources including eggs, meat and fish. Secondly cholesterol comes from the body; the liver produces a wax like substance which is linked to carrier proteins called lipoproteins. Lipoproteins dissolve the cholesterol in our blood and carry it to different parts of your body.

As I said cholesterol isn’t bad, it is certain types which are. There is “good” and “bad” cholesterol.

I’m not going to go into too much scientific detail but high-density lipoproteins also known as HDL is the good cholesterol. Low-density lipoproteins known as LDL are the bad cholesterol which needs to be avoided. The basic reason why LDL is bad is that this type of cholesterol builds up in the arteries which can prevent our heart from getting the vital oxygen and nutrients. This is linked to all types of serious heart problems.

The first thing you should do if you know that you have high levels of cholesterol is to consult your GP before you make any drastic changes. The safest way of lowering your high cholesterol is simply through your diet and doing some exercise.

What to do if you have high cholesterol?

Simple steps to avoiding high cholesterol:

1. Eat in moderation.

2. Avoid too much processed fatty foods.

3. Stay away from sweets.

4. Eat loads of veg which helps to lower cholesterol.

5. Boost your fibre intake.

6. Exercise!

I must add that you should NOT cut out all fats, we need fats to survive. Bad fats (hydrogenated and trans-fats) need to be avoided and limit your intake of saturated fat. Good fats actually help to improve cholesterol levels. You will find saturated fats normally in meat, whole-milk products and egg yolks. Trans-fats are contained in many products to improve shelf life, margarine contains high levels of trans-fats. Trans-fats even lower the good cholesterol in your body so you should limit your intake of trans-fats as much as you can. The ingredient list on the back of a product should show you what types of fats are contained.So the key rule is to replace the bad fats for the good fats and it should greatly reduce your body’s chances of being high in cholesterol.

Robert A. Young a leading micro-biologist once said “There is only One Sickness and One Disease, and this one ‘sickness’ is the over-acidification of the body due primarily to an inverted way of living, thinking, and eating… there can therefore be only one remedy and treatment, and that is to alkalize the body and break the cycle of imbalance, thus allowing us to experience the energy, vitality and true health we’re all meant to have.”

So take on board what I have said and implement these changes in your life if needed.

Eat well, feel great,

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