Cholesterol gets a bad rap. LDL too. Reality is much different. It is the oxidized LDL, a lipid particle that has undergone serious damage, that is the dangerous player.
We have all been brainwashed about cholesterol (and its partner, LDL). Media, Pharma, and MD’s tell us it’s bad and we need to lower it. They make up guidelines pushing statins drugs that the MD’s must follow, or else.
But the body (and all animals) makes cholesterol for a reason. Actually, the body makes cholesterol for many reasons including:
Cholesterol doesn’t like water. It is a hydrophobic molecule. As such, it must be “escorted” around the body. In this case, an LDL particle takes cholesterol around the body, much like a bus transports its passengers. Cholesterol is one of the passengers on the LDL bus. There are many other types of passengers as well on the LDL bus including phospholipids, triglycerides, Co Q 10, and fat-soluble vitamins.
As you can see, LDL is a good thing. That is why the human body and all mammals make LDL.
But when LDL is oxidized (damaged), risk of cardiovascular events goes up markedly. Oxidation is like rusting of the body and body parts. Evidence of oxidation means your body it out of balance- too many things causing oxidation and not enough things leading to ANTI-oxidation.
A recent study showed a 79% increase in heart events in those with high ox-LDL. Oxidized LDL looks different to scavenger receptors on the liver and likely has a decreased clearance from the circulation. More inflammation and immune activation are the result of this lack of clearance and likely lead to more vascular damage.
The immune recognizes the ox-LDL as a foreign invader, cranking up the immune response. Macrophages in the blood vessel walls gobble up ox-LDL and now get classified as foam cells. Then the foam cells eventually die, leading to plaque in the arteries, vulnerable to rupture. Next is a heart attack or worse.
Ox LDL also inhibits nitric oxide (NO) formation and can negatively impact vascular function.
Take control of your health. The average MD is not going to check this test. Find one who does.
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