High Cholesterol Wellness Protocol
Cholesterol is a lipoprotein — a waxy substance that’s found in the fats (lipids) in the blood.
There are two primary types of cholesterol:
Low-density lipoprotein (LDL-C) or “bad” cholesterol transports cholesterol throughout your body. LDL-C can build up in the walls of your arteries, making them hard and narrow, a process known as atherosclerosis. High LDL-C levels can increase your risk of heart disease, heart attack or stroke.
High-density lipoprotein (HDL-C) or “good” cholesterol picks up excess cholesterol and takes it back to your liver.
It is estimated that nearly 50% of adults in the U.S. have at least one lipid abnormality; for example, nearly 30% have either elevated LDL-C (bad cholesterol) levels, roughly 25% have low HDL-C (good cholesterol) levels, and about 10% have both.
High LDL-C (bad cholesterol) increases fatty deposits in the blood vessels, which over time may lead to blockages in blood vessels. However, it is now understood that this is a slow and gradual process.
Of greater risk than the gradual blockage of the lumen is having a plaque that is unstable, because it may rupture and break off into the blood stream, causing a heart attack or stroke.,
Thus rather than just enlarging the lumen of the blood vessel, more successful therapies address the factors which make a plaque unstable, including inflammation, increased reactive oxygen species, and immune activation.
High blood cholesterol itself does not cause symptoms, so many people are unaware that their bad cholesterol level is too high. In addition to cholesterol levels, a more sophisticated analysis of blood lipids, including measures such as oxidized LDL, cholesterol subfractions, etc., can most effectively determine risk as well as which therapies will be most helpful.