What Causes High Cholesterol If I Eat Healthy Can It Be Genetic
If you eat a healthy diet and get regular exercise but still have high cholesterol, your DNA may be a bigger factor than your lifestyle. About 1 in 250 people in the United States live with familial hypercholesterolemia , a life-threatening inherited disorder that causes high cholesterol.
Unfortunately, 90 percent of people who have it dont know it, according to the FH Foundation, a national nonprofit organization based in Pasadena, California. Screening for high cholesterol is the only way to identify people who have FH. Because of this, all children should have a cholesterol screening once between ages 9 and 11, recommends the American Academy of Pediatrics.
If your LDL is above 100, its already considered high. If its higher than 190, you may have FH, according to leading heart groups, such as the AHA, the American College of Cardiology, and the National Lipid Association. If a parent has FH, their child has a chance of having it, too. Finding out if you have FH and getting treated if you do is vital, because having FH means your risk of heart disease is 20 times higher than that of people who dont have inherited high cholesterol, according to the FH Foundation.
What Are The Treatments For High Cholesterol
Your healthcare provider may recommend treating high cholesterol with lifestyle changes alone or in combination with medications to actively lower your cholesterol level. Lifestyle changes include eating a healthy diet, maintaining a healthy weight, getting adequate physical exercise, and quitting smoking.
However, you may also need treatment with medications. Your doctor may order further blood tests to analyze specific inflammatory biomarkers and determine your individual need for cholesterol-lowering medication.
Medications used to treat high cholesterol include:
- Bile acid resins or sequestrants, such as cholestyramine and colesevelam , which help your body eliminate or remove cholesterol from the blood
- Ezetimibe , which prevents the absorption of cholesterol from the foods you eat
- Fibrates or fibric acid derivatives, such as fenofibrate and gemfibrozil , which help reduce triglycerides and increase the amount of high-density lipoprotein in your blood
- Niacin or nicotinic acid , which helps your body increase HDL levels while decreasing the amount of low-density lipoprotein levels and triglycerides in your blood
- Statins, such as simvastatin and , which reduce the amount of cholesterol the liver produces
You can help control your cholesterol levels and reduce your risk of developing cardiovascular disease by following the treatment plan you and your healthcare provider design specifically for you
How Can High Cholesterol Levels Affect You
If there is too much LDL cholesterol in the blood, it accumulates along the walls of your blood vessels or arteries it can slowly build in the arteries and makes them narrower.As cholesterol deposits accumulate, the arteries harden and grow further narrower. The hardening does not allow them to dilate to the fullest capacity, thus, restricting the blood flow to the heart.At times the cholesterol deposit or plaque can completely block the arteries, which can result in heart attack or heart failure. The plaque also tends to burst, forming blood clots, which block the blood flow to the heart. This can cause chest pain, also known as angina, or a heart attack.
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Mayo Clinic Q And A: Medications For High Cholesterol
DEAR MAYO CLINIC: I have high cholesterol, but I can’t take statin drugs. Are there any new medications that I should consider?
ANSWER: Cholesterol is a waxy substance that’s found in the fats in your blood. When you have too much cholesterol, you can develop fatty deposits, or lipids, in your blood vessels that can make it difficult for blood to flow through your arteries. An estimated 29 million adults in the U.S. have high cholesterol.
While medications known as statins are common for people with high cholesterol, many people find they cannot tolerate statins, so don’t feel like you are alone. The good news is that there are several alternatives to statins that may lower your blood lipids.
Ezetimibe is an oral agent that has been approved in the U.S. for many years. It can lower low-density lipoprotein, which is known as LDL or “bad” cholesterol. It is taken once daily with or without food. Although not relevant in your case, Ezetimibe also has been shown to reduce the risk of recurrent heart attack, stroke or death from heart disease when added to a statin drug in patients who have suffered a recent acute coronary syndrome.
There are also therapies that can be administered as injections instead of requiring daily oral administration as pills. These agents alter a protein PCSK 9 that interacts with the LDL receptor on the surface of the liver.
Cholesterol: Key Player At The Lung Surface
- Lund University
- Cholesterol, a naturally occurring compound at the lung surface, has been shown to have a clear effect on the properties of this nanoscale film that covers the inside of our lungs. Cholesterol levels in this system may affect the lungs function, according to researchers.
Cholesterol, a naturally occurring compound at the lung surface, has been shown to have a clear effect on the properties of this nanoscale film that covers the inside of our lungs. Cholesterol levels in this system may affect the lung’s function, according to researchers at Lund University in Sweden who have published a new study on the significance of cholesterol for lung surface properties. The new findings provide new insights into this vital physiological system.
The zone in the lung where the exchange of oxygen and carbon dioxide takes place between the body and the air we inhale are called the alveoli. Now, in a joint study, researchers in chemistry and medicine at Lund University have more closely examined the thin film of proteins and fats that stabilises and protects the alveoli.
This film, known as surfactant, also affects the transport of various molecules between the air and the body’s blood vessels.
“Our study addresses the effect of cholesterol on the surface of the alveoli. We have obtained astonishingly clear results,” says Emma Sparr, professor of chemistry at Lund University.
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Wrong Dietary Habits Consisting Of Saturated Fats And Trans Fats
Foods that are high in saturated fats are rich sources of triglycerides and LDL. They also tend to lower HDL, the good cholesterol.
Such foods include fatty red meat, lard, poultry skin, butter, high-fat dairy products, and shellfish. Regular consumption of such foods can over time give your triglycerides a boost in their numbers.
Trans-fat foods are another potential reason for increased triglyceride and LDL numbers posing a high risk of serious health problems to the heart, brain, and more.
Trans fats are artificially manufactured through a process of hydrogenation. It is an inexpensive way to chemically treat liquid oils and solidify them to improve the taste and texture and increase the shelf life.
Trans fats are added to a variety of foods such as doughnuts, baked goods including cakes, biscuits, pie crusts, cookies, frozen pizza, crackers, stick kinds of margarine and other spreads, lunch meat, hot dogs, snack foods such as french fries, chips.
Can High Cholesterol Make You Short Of Breath
February 16, 2016 by Cholesterol Guardian
Shortness of breath or breathing difficulty may be triggered by various risk factors. It may also develop from stress and anxiety. Shortness of breath can possibly be experienced by adults, children, or the elderly. Although may be caused by variety of factors, these factors are usually rooted in lung-related and heart-related conditions. Lung and heart problems, such as asthma and blocked oxygen are some of the most common cause that make a person short of breath. Continuous stress and high cholesterol are also commonly related to this health problem.
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What Causes High Cholesterol In Children And Teens
Three main factors contribute to high cholesterol in children and teens:
- An unhealthy diet, especially one that is high in fats
- A family history of high cholesterol, especially when one or both parents have high cholesterol
Chart Showing Normal And High Triglyceride Levels In The Blood
Normal Triglyceride Levels Less than 150 per deciliter.Borderline Triglyceride Levels Between 150 to 200 mg/dlHigh Triglyceride Levels More than 200 mg/dlVery High Triglyceride Levels More than 500 mg/dl
Having high triglycerides means having levels above 200 mg/dl. The dangers potentiate more when high triglycerides levels are accompanied by high LDL cholesterol and low HDL cholesterol, which usually is the case.
LDL is the bad cholesterol that can, like triglycerides, cause atherosclerosis.
HDL is the good cholesterol, which removes the LDL from the blood and the atherosclerotic plaques from the arterial walls and takes them to the liver to be processed and then excreted out of the body.
If HDL levels are low, this useful function of HDL falls short, and your risk of heart disease increases. It is always better to have high HDL levels.
There is the third type of lipoprotein called very-low-density lipoprotein in which triglycerides form the major portion, almost 85%.
Triglycerides are the main form of fats that are stored in the adipose tissue of the body. They provide energy to the body when it requires it.
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Cholesterol As A Potential Pharmacologic Target In Lung Disease
Given the connection between cholesterol dysregulation and pulmonary immunity, it has become of interest to examine the efficacy against pulmonary disease of drugs targeting cholesterol transport . In addition to reduction of serum cholesterol through inhibition of HMGCR in the mevalonate synthesis pathway of the liver and other organs, statins have been shown to have pleiotropic anti-inflammatory actions. While some effects of statins on pro-inflammatory signaling likely stem from reduction of lipid raft cholesterol, statins also attenuate pro-inflammatory signaling through depleting HMGCR-derived isoprenoids, and may also have HMGCR-independent effects upon inflammation . Most in vivo studies of statins have not distinguished among these mechanisms.
But Why Is My Cholesterol So High
High cholesterol happens when theres too much cholesterol in your blood the medical term for it is hypercholesterolemia. This condition affects almost 1 in 3 adults. Wow!
So, how does your blood get choked with this fat? Many of the potential causes of high cholesterol are lifestyle-related diet, exercise, and so on. But family history and other medical issues can influence your cholesterol too.
These vices and habits may increase your risk of high cholesterol:
- excessive drinking
- a diet high in saturated fat
- a diet high in trans fat
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Maybe Shes Born With It
High cholesterol due to genetics is called familial hypercholesterolemia . People with FH are born with high cholesterol because their bodies cant process LDL correctly.
FH is one of the most common inherited diseases, affecting 1 in 220 adults. People with FH have a 13 times greater risk of heart disease. Untreated FH can result in chronically high cholesterol levels and heart disease.
The Way We Live Now: 12
- Read in app
The patient was halfway up the stairs by the time he noticed how short of breath he was. When he reached the top of the staircase, he had to stop, sit down and catch his breath. That had never happened before. ”It scared me,” he told the middle-aged doctor he was recounting his symptoms to — the third doctor he had seen since that day on the stairs. ”I never get sick. I didn’t feel sick. I just couldn’t breathe.”
He was a healthy man in his 50’s who rarely saw his primary care doctor, but that day he wanted to see him — right away. When his doctor asked him about his symptoms, he had few to report. No cold symptoms, no fever or chills, no joint pains. He hadn’t lost weight he wasn’t tired. But when he did anything active, anything at all, he felt as out of breath as if he had run a 50-yard dash. He had no other medical problems, except high cholesterol, and he took Lipitor to keep it down. He had never smoked. He drank socially, was active, though not athletic, and had his own law practice.
He looked younger than his 59 years, with serious hazel eyes and an easy smile, but the doctor noted that he started breathing hard while walking to the exam room. By the time he boosted himself onto the table he was sweating. Other than his rapid breathing, his exam was pretty normal. With one exception: in the bottom half of both lungs, the doctor heard a quiet but abnormal sound, like Velcro being pulled apart with each breath.
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What You Can Do
Learn the basics: âYour cholesterolâ isnât just one number, but several that together give your doctor a âlipid profile.â Unhealthy levels are linked to hardening of the arteries, which can cause heart disease, heart attack, and stroke. Your numbers include âbadâ and âgoodâ cholesterol, and triglycerides. Armed with this knowledge, and with the help and guidance of your doctor, you can start to understand and manage your own levels.
Get tested: Because unhealthy cholesterol numbers often donât cause symptoms, especially at first, itâs important to get tested. You can be slim and feel healthy and still have a cholesterol problem. Once you know thereâs a problem, you can try to change it through diet, lifestyle, and, if necessary, medication. But youâre unlikely to do that if you donât know about it. If youâre 20 or older, you should get your levels checked every 4 to 6 years. Your doctor should test you more often if youâre overweight or diabetic or you have heart disease.
Exercise: Regular exercise is one of the best ways to control your cholesterol. You donât have to run a marathon. A half-hour or so of brisk walking, swimming, or dancing three or four times a week should do the trick. If youâre short on time, you can break it into 10-minute increments throughout the day. Resistance training — pushups, pullups, weights — may help too.
Too Much Alcohol Intake
Alcohol consumption can increase triglycerides when consumed beyond the recommended limits and alcohol abuse can have a disastrous effect on your lipid levels.
In a person with excessive alcohol intake, triglycerides and LDL cholesterol get elevated and HDL levels tend to fall. This can be very dangerous exposing you to a potential risk of cardiovascular disease.
Alcohol is rapidly absorbed and taken to the liver for metabolism. The liver cannot metabolize it fast enough and it gets overburdened. The fatty acids, therefore, accumulate in the blood raising the triglyceride levels.
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Addressing Issues With High Cholesterol
A person cannot directly alter their genetic makeup however, they can reduce the risk factors that are associated with heredity by altering their lifestyle. This means engaging in a healthy lifestyle that is not associated with any type of drug misuse or abuse. Individuals using or abusing drugs or alcohol should become involved in substance use disorder treatment programs to address these issues.
Other common sense interventions to engage in include:
- Eating a balanced diet
Can High Cholesterol Cause Shortness Of Breath
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Youve Got To Move It Move It
Research has shown that exercise can increase HDL levels and lower triglycerides.
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services recommends that adults get 150 to 300 minutes of moderate-intensity physical activity or 75 to 150 minutes of vigorous physical activity per week. And kids ages 6 to 17 should get an hour or more of moderate-to-vigorous activity per day.
More About The Symptoms Of Cholesterol
The liver is responsible for producing most of the cholesterol in your body, though you can also absorb it from foods that contain cholesterol. The problem is that, even though many organs need it, too much cholesterol causes irreparable damage. In fact, high cholesterol is a potential killer.
The most worrisome thing is that many are unaware that they have it in high quantities since it isnt usually manifested by blunt symptoms.
Consequently, it can lead to the development of more serious health problems, such as arteriosclerosis, hypertension, and kidney failure. Because of this, its very important to identify any signs that could help detect any problems early on.
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What Exactly Is Cholesterol
Everyone has cholesterol, a yellowy-white wax-like lipid thats in every cell of your body. Cholesterol keeps your cells and organs working properly. It also plays a major role in hormone, vitamin, and digestive fluid production.
Cholesterol comes from two sources 80 percent is naturally produced by your liver and intestines, and your diet accounts for the last 20 percent.
High cholesterol is a creeper condition it usually doesnt have any symptoms. It can go undetected until you have blood work or a serious health event like a stroke or heart attack.