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Have an annual screening
(usually a blood drawing) to
determine your cholesterol
levels. Be sure to discuss
family history and other
issues which your doctor
may want to know before
deciding whether or not you
should be checked for the
Lp(a) lipoproteins. He or
she can better determine
your risks, the diagnosis, and
possible treatment (which
may include prescription
medication) when fully
informed.
WHY Lp(a) contributes to the increased risk
of heart disease, it is commonly believed that
the natural lesions which occur in our artery
walls may contain substances that interact with
it. This may lead to the build up of the fatty
deposits.
From Where Do
We Get Cholesterol?
The general consensus is that the human
body is capable of producing the cholesterol
that one needs to remain healthy. The body
- most especially the liver - produces roughly
1,000 mg per day. Therefore the cholesterol
consumed (by the average person eating
the typical foods such as whole milk dairy
products, eggs, meat, poultry, fish and seafood)
is not really necessary to maintain the healthy
level which one needs.
Two of the biggest culprits which contribute
to the excessive consumption of cholesterol
are transfats and saturated fats. But other
fats consumed in foods can also raise blood
cholesterol. While some of the excess fat is
removed from the body by the liver, most
heart specialists recommend that the average
person limit himself/herself to less than 300
mg daily. And if one has been diagnosed with
heart disease, that level should be less than
200 mg daily. If one has been diagnosed with
extremely high cholesterol, even more drastic
measures may be necessary to bring it under
control.
How Do I
Control My Intake?
A proven and accepted measure of control is to
limit one’s intake to no more that 6 ounces of
lean meat/fish/poultry daily, and to consume
only low fat/no fat dairy products. Effective
substitutes for the protein necessary for good
health can be found in beans and vegetables
with high protein content.
It is also recommended that one adopt a
regular exercise regimen. Even a moderate
amount of daily activity can help to increase
the movement of blood through one’s body.
Physical activities such as leisurely walking,
gardening, light yard work, housework and
slow dancing are often prescribed as ideally
suited for those who need a daily routine to
help control the cholesterol levels.
A more intense regimen can include brisk
walking, jogging, swimming and weight-
lifting. Aerobic exercising is an excellent way
to increase one’s breathing and heart rates.
Side benefits of a regularly scheduled exercise
program can include weight control, reducing
one’s risk of developing diabetes, and helping
to keep one’s blood pressure at a healthy level.
Regular moderate to intense exercise can also
help to strengthen one’s heart and lungs.
To Smoke or
Not to Smoke...
Most physicians and specialists recommend
that no one smoke. And it has been proven
that tobacco smoking increases the risk
of heart disease. One’s intake of oxygen,
which is a necessary component for good
vascular circulation and health, is drastically
reduced. Plus, smoking is detrimental to HDL
cholesterol levels and increases the possibility
of blood clots, not to mention the risks of
causing cancer in one’s body.
The Effects of Alcohol
on Cholesterol Levels
The moderate consumption of alcohol has
shown, in some studies, to actually promote
higher HDL cholesterol levels. With that
said one must weigh the risks of alcoholism,
obesity, stroke, high blood pressure, some
forms of cancer, and sometimes depression.
Exercise moderation (not more than 1-2
drinks daily for men, not more than 1
drink daily for women). And if you don’t
drink, don’t start. There are better and safer
alternatives for controlling one’s cholesterol.
Synopsis:
HDL is “good” cholesterol
LDL is “bad” cholesterol
An exercise regimen can help in lowering
LDL and increasing HDL
Cholesterol can be controlled with a
sensible diet, for many people
Smoking can increase the risks of lower
HDL levels and the possibility of blood
clots
Consult your physician or health care provider
before embarking on any exercise regimen, or
the consumption of alcohol, as a method to
control one’s cholesterol. He or she can direct
you to what steps you need to take in order to
ensure the best results for your efforts.
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