Cholesterol is a substance with the consistency of wax that our body produces naturally through the liver. It is also obtained when we consume certain foods.
It is very important for the body because it helps with hormone production and the digestion of fatty foods, but it becomes dangerous when it accumulates at high levels in the blood vessels. That is, over time, it will make blood circulation difficult; it can narrow the blood vessels and cause heart disease or heart attack.
Every time we eat, our intestines absorb fat and then transfer it to the liver. Once it is in the liver, the fat is modified and then transported in the blood to the rest of the body.
Each type of cholesterol is different and it is important to know their levels with a simple blood test.
Your body needs cholesterol to function properly, but having too much in the blood accumulates it into plaques on the walls of the arteries. High cholesterol does not cause signs or symptoms, so it is important to test its level of concentration in the body.
“Good” cholesterol or HDL: Reduces the risk of heart disease. Helps pick up the bad cholesterol and removes fat deposits that form within the blood vessels to prevent blocking.
“Bad” cholesterol or LDL: It tends to build up and clog the arteries and veins. It increases the risk of heart attack or stroke.
Triglycerides are a type of fat that the body stores to provide energy. When you consume more calories than your body needs, your liver produces more triglycerides.
• Total cholesterol: less than 200 mg / dL (lower numbers are better)
• HDL: more than 50 mg / dL (high numbers are better)
• LDL: 70-130 mg / dL (lower numbers are better)
• Triglycerides: 10-150 mg / dL (lower numbers are better)
-You must keep your total cholesterol below 200.
-Reduce your intake of saturated fats. These come from animal products such as meat, butter, whole milk and cheese.
-Reduce the consumption of trans fats, which can be found in cookies, cakes, margarine, and fried foods.
-Limit simple sugars such as table syrup, honey, and other sugar products.
-Increase your consumption of fruits, vegetables.
-Eat more foods with fiber, such as oatmeal, oat bran, beans and lentils.
-Use low-fat sauces and dressings.
-Try to exercise regularly. A good amount is 2 and a half hours during the week spent walking, swimming or doing aerobics.
-Reduce your consumption of alcohol.