Cholesterol is found naturally in the body including the liver, blood, brain, nerves and bile. It is produced mainly in the liver and is used for digestion (bile acids), membrane integrity and as a sex hormone precursor. If the body does not use up cholesterol, it remains in the blood, where it can become oxidised and form plaques or lesions on the artery walls.
Two types of cholesterol
LDL (Low Density Lipoprotein) – the ‘bad’ cholesterol that picks up cholesterol and deposits it in the arteries and tissues. It appears that LDL cholesterol may only become harmful when it is oxidised.
HDL (High Density Lipoprotein) – the ‘good’ cholesterol that picks up cholesterol and transports it back to the liver for elimination.
Oxidised cholesterol in the blood
Oxidised cholesterol enters the blood in a variety of ways:
Metabolism of animal products
Dietary and Lifestyle Applications
Sugar is the biggest factor for high cholesterol levels, reducing starch and sugar from the diet will result in a decrease of blood fat levels.
It is important not to follow a low fat diet, but to decrease the amount of damaged fats consumed, while increasing amounts of essential fats
Fish oils have been shown to lower blood cholesterol
Fibre binds cholesterol and bile acids and promotes their excretion.
Oat bran and brown rice bran are excellent sources of fibre (not wheat bran)
Avoid saturated fats
Avoid hydrogenated fats
Mono unsaturated fats (olive oil, avocado), and polyunsaturated fats (seeds, vegetable oils) have been shown to lower cholesterol.
Avoid coffee. Some studies suggest that coffee consumption increases cholesterol levels.
Maria Esposito BSc (Hons) R-Nutritional Therapy – NAET – R-craniosacral therapist – NLP practitioner – Certified Angel Guide