Cholesterol; The Good, The Bad and The Ugly

Your liver makes all the cholesterol your body needs and your body uses it to protect nerves, produce cell tissue and produce certain hormones. You also get cholesterol from some foods such as meats, eggs and dairy products. You need cholesterol, but too much can be damaging.

The issue is, if your body gets too much cholesterol, you need to store it somewhere. Unfortunately, unlike some unnecessary things, the body doesn't just eliminate the extra cholesterol. The body stores the extra cholesterol in your arteries, (the blood vessels that carry blood from your heart to the rest of your body).

The build up of cholesterol on a blood vessel wall is known as plaque. Over time, this plaque will build up on the inside of the blood vessel and minimize the space for the blood to flow through. This is similar to how an old galvanized pipe will rust on the inside and decrease the water flow through the pipe.

Two bad things can happen here. First, as the blood vessel narrows because of the plaque build up, the blood vessel down stream will have a decrease supply of blood and because of this, the tissues will get less oxygen. This can be very dangerous when the blockage leads to your heart or brain.

Second, if the plaque breaks free, it can scratch a blood cell and start the blood clot cascade which may lead to either a stroke or a heart attack.

A stroke or a heart attack is devastating not only to the person it happens to, but to all of their family and friends also. If you have not had a cholesterol level done within the past 12 months, please make an appointment to visit your doctor to discuss your cholesterol.

If you take cholesterol medications, or just would like to learn more about a specific cholesterol medication, please register to become a member at AudibleRx and then navigate to the medication your would like to learn more about.


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