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Can Smoking Cause High Cholesterol

What Is A Healthy Blood Cholesterol Level

Stroke, clogged arteries and atherosclerosis

For people who have plaque in their arteries or who have other factors that put them at risk for cardiovascular disease, doctors recommend an ideal LDL level well below 70 mg/dl. For those without risk factors who have an LDL level at or above 190 mg/dl, the recommendation is to get this level down to below 100 mg/dl. People age 40 to 75 who are living with diabetes and whose LDL is at 70 or above may need medication.

How To Identify And Manage High Cholesterol

Cholesterol has a bad reputation, but it is in fact a necessary part of how your body functions. The concern with cholesterol comes when theres too much of it, especially the bad type of it it can raise your risk of heart disease and stroke, both leading causes of death in the United States.

Your cholesterol levels are controllable if you take the proper steps to know your numbers and manage your risk. Your healthcare team, including the staff at our pharmacy, are always ready to help you take those steps and take control of your heart health.

Symptoms Of High Cholesterol

Often, there are no specific symptoms of high cholesterol. You could have high cholesterol and not know it.

If you have high cholesterol, your body may store the extra cholesterol in your arteries. These are blood vessels that carry blood from your heart to the rest of your body. A buildup of cholesterol in your arteries is known as plaque. Over time, plaque can become hard and make your arteries narrow. Large deposits of plaque can completely block an artery. Cholesterol plaques can also break apart, leading to formation of a blood clot that blocks the flow of blood.

A blocked artery to the heart can cause a heart attack. A blocked artery to your brain can cause a stroke.

Many people dont discover that they have high cholesterol until they suffer one of these life-threatening events. Some people find out through routine check-ups that include blood tests.

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Can Smoking Increase Your Heart Attack Risk

The impact smoking has on your body doesnt stop with high cholesterol levels. Smoking can increase your risk for heart attack and stroke.

Smoking can raise your LDL cholesterol levels and lower your HDL cholesterol levels. Over time, this can lead to inflammation in your blood vessels and arteries, and plaque can build up in your arteries.

This plaque can harden and break off, which can lead to blood clots and strokes.

When you have plaque in your arteries, your heart has a harder time pumping blood through your body. That makes your heart work harder and decreases blood flow to all areas of your body.

These circumstances can result in a condition called coronary heart disease, or coronary artery disease. Coronary heart disease is the in the United States.

Smoking and high cholesterol are not the only risk factors for heart disease. Other risk factors include:

  • family history
  • age
  • diet

However, smoking is one of the risk factors that you can control. In turn, quitting smoking can help improve cholesterol levels and lower your risk for heart disease, heart attack, and stroke.

Yes, quitting smoking can reverse heart damage. In fact, it can do so quickly.

According to the American Heart Association, one-third of deaths from coronary heart disease each year are due to smoking and secondhand smoke. On average, people who smoke die more than 10 years earlier than people who dont smoke.

Quitting smoking lowers your risk of several cancers, too, including:

  • lung cancer

How Is Smoking Related To Heart Disease And Stroke

Pin on Bad Cholesterol

Smoking is a major cause of cardiovascular disease and causes one of every four deaths from CVD.9 Smoking can:10

  • Raise triglycerides
  • Lower good cholesterol
  • Make blood sticky and more likely to clot, which can block blood flow to the heart and brain
  • Damage cells that line the blood vessels
  • Increase the buildup of plaque in blood vessels
  • Cause thickening and narrowing of blood vessels

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Does Smoking Raise Blood Pressure

Smoking raises your blood pressure in the short term and over a long period of time, putting both young and old smokers at high risk of developing hypertension , compared to those who do not smoke.

A longitudinal study of nearly 29,000 people, ages 36 to 80 found that smoking not only raises blood pressure over time, but also puts you at higher risk of developing atherosclerosis, a chronic, progressive disease in which plaques build up in the walls of arteries. The study cites smoking as an independent risk factor for cardiovascular disease.

Smoking activates your sympathetic nervous system, which releases chemicals that swiftly increase blood pressure. Long-term smoking contributes to the development of chronic hypertension by accelerating arterial aging, or how quickly the arteries become damaged.

Why Should I Lower My Cholesterol

Evidence strongly indicates that high cholesterol can increase the risk of:

This is because cholesterol can build up in the artery wall, restricting the blood flow to your heart, brain and the rest of your body. It also increases the risk of a blood clot developing somewhere in your body.

Your risk of developing coronary heart disease also rises as your blood’s cholesterol level increases. This can cause pain in your chest or arm during stress or physical activity .

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The Smoking And Cholesterol Connection

Smoking damages your bodys arteries and blood vessels. This increases your risk for plaque buildup. It also reduces the amount of high-density lipoproteins the good cholesterol in your blood. This is a problem because HDLs absorb cholesterol and carry it back to the liver, where it is flushed from the body. High levels of HDLs in the blood protect against .

Experts estimate that if you smoke, you have a 2 to 4 times greater chance of developing heart disease than if you don’t smoke. The risk is even greater if you smoke and struggle with high cholesterol. Three risk factors such as smoking, having , and having a family history of heart disease increase your risk for heart disease tenfold.

How Smoking Affects Atherosclerosis Risk

How to Reverse the Effects of High Cholesterol

Smoking is considered one of the biggest risk factors for atherosclerosis. Cigarette smoke increases the risk of atherosclerosis in the following ways:

  • Cholesterol: The toxins in tobacco smoke lower your HDL levels while raising levels of LDL .
  • Nicotine and carbon monoxide: The nicotine and carbon monoxide in cigarette smoke damage your endothelium, setting the stage for the build-up of plaque.
  • High blood pressure:While cigarette smoking won’t cause high blood pressure, if you smoke and you also have hypertension, smoking can increase the risk of malignant hypertension, a dangerous form of high blood pressure.

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Effects Of Smoking On Your Cardiovascular System

Cigarette smoking is a major preventable cause of premature cardiovascular disease, with the risk particularly high in people with hypertension. Cigarette smoking increases the likelihood of having a heart attack or stroke because it adds to the damage done to the blood vessels by high blood pressure and high cholesterol levels.

Chronic smoking also stiffens the arteries making them less flexible as blood passes through them. As a result the heart has to work harder to move blood through the body in cigarette smokers.

Nicotine, the addictive chemical found in combustible cigarettes and other tobacco products, has been found to acutely increase blood pressure through its effects on the sympathetic nervous system. Therefore all people, especially those who already have hypertension, should quit smoking as soon as possible.

Many people, including cigarette smokers, are unaware that they have high blood pressure because the symptoms are nonspecific and therefore can be attributed to many other medical conditions.

How Will Quitting Help

As soon as you stop smoking, your risk of heart disease and many other health problems starts to fall. You will feel much fitter and healthier, your skin will improve, your stress levels will fall, your breathing will open up and walking and exercising will get easier.

  • Within hours, your heart rate will return to normal and the chemicals will start to leave your blood.
  • Within days, your breathing will open up and your sense of taste and smell will improve.
  • Within weeks, your blood will become less sticky and the risk of heart attacks will start to fall.
  • Within months, the blood flow around your body will improve, youll feel more energetic and exercise will be easier.
  • Within a year, coughing and wheezing will improve as your lungs can take in more air.
  • After one year, your risk of heart disease and heart attacks will be halved. After 15 years, it will be similar to someone who has never smoked.

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What To Know About Cholesterol

Cholesterol is a waxy, fat-like substance in your blood thats produced naturally by your liver.

Cholesterol plays a role in cell creation, hormone production, and food digestion. Your body makes all the cholesterol it needs. However, cholesterol is also found in some foods, and many people get more cholesterol than they need from their diet.

A high-fat diet can increase your risk for high cholesterol, but other factors play a part in your cholesterol levels as well, including your genes and whether you smoke.

There are two types of cholesterol: low-density lipoprotein and high-density lipoprotein .

LDL, also called the bad cholesterol, can create a fatty buildup of a substance called plaque on the inside of your arteries. This can narrow your arteries and increase your risk for:

According to the National Institutes of Health , a healthy level of LDL cholesterol for people of any age is a reading below 100 milligrams per deciliter .

HDL, known as the healthy cholesterol, can remove LDL and transport it to the liver where its flushed out of your body.

Unlike LDL cholesterol, you want your HDL to be a higher number. A healthy level of HDL is above 40 mg/dL for men and above 50 mg/dL for women.

Ideally, your total combined cholesterol should be below 200 mg/dL.

  • make blood thicker and stickier, and more likely to clot
  • damage the cells that line blood vessels and arteries
  • cause thickening and narrowing of blood vessels

High Cholesterol: Symptoms Causes And Treatments

Pin on Help With Lowering Cholesterol

High cholesterol levels do not usually cause any obvious symptoms. As a result, people are often not aware that they have high cholesterol until a screening test shows abnormal results.

High cholesterol levels can have harmful effects on the body, but people can take steps to lower them. In some cases, doctors may also prescribe medications.

Keep reading to learn about the effects of high cholesterol, as well as the causes and treatment options.

Cholesterol is a fat-like substance that the liver makes. Its functions include:

  • being a component of bile acids, which aid in the digestion of fatty foods
  • being the precursor of steroid hormones
  • helping the skin make vitamin D when it has exposure to sunlight
  • playing a key role in cell membrane health

As the body can make all of the cholesterol that it uses for these functions, people do not need to get it from their diet. As long as the body has cholesterol in the right amounts, this substance is beneficial. However, it becomes a risk factor for several conditions when there is too much of it.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention note that the two main types of cholesterol are:

Low-density lipoprotein cholesterol

People sometimes refer to this as bad cholesterol. High LDL levels cause plaque to build up in the blood vessels, narrowing them. This narrowing can lead to stroke, heart attack, and other problems.

High-density lipoprotein cholesterol

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Does Quitting Smoking Lower Blood Pressure

Quitting smoking along with making small changes to your habits like eating a low sodium diet, getting regular exercise, maintaining a healthy weight, and limiting alcohol intake can lower your blood pressure by 10 to 20 mmHG or more.

Quitting earlier is best to avoid irreversible damage to our blood vessels but even if you are a longtime smoker it is never too late to quit. Smoking also increases your risk of other conditions like lung cancer, COPD, and emphysema so the health benefits of quitting are enormous.

In the United States, the estimated number of tobacco smokers has dropped, as a result of tobacco-control efforts, from 45.1 million smokers in 2005 to 36.5 million smokers in 2017. That number is expected to continue to drop although the rise in use of smokeless tobacco has caused some opposition.

How Is High Cholesterol Diagnosed

There are usually no signs or symptoms that you have high cholesterol. There is a blood test to measure your cholesterol level. When and how often you should get this test depends on your age, risk factors, and family history. The general recommendations are:

For people who are age 19 or younger::

  • The first test should be between ages 9 to 11
  • Children should have the test again every 5 years
  • Some children may have this test starting at age 2 if there is a family history of high blood cholesterol, heart attack, or stroke

For people who are age 20 or older::

  • Younger adults should have the test every 5 years
  • Men ages 45 to 65 and women ages 55 to 65 should have it every 1 to 2 years

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What Causes High Cholesterol Dairy Smoking Genetics And More

  • High cholesterol is associated with a greater risk of heart disease and stroke, so it is important to understand the common causes behind this serious condition.
  • Eating a lot of fried foods, fatty meats, and processed foods are among the main dietary culprits of high cholesterol.
  • Exercising more regularly can directly benefit your cholesterol and lower the chance of obesity, which is also a factor in high cholesterol.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, cholesterol levels should be no higher than 200 mg/dL. Yet, an estimated 95 million US adults have levels higher than 200 mg/dL, and nearly one-third of them have extremely high cholesterol levels beyond 240 mg/dL.

And that’s not good. Because high cholesterol means that plaque is more prone to build up and stick to the artery walls within your heart. The higher your cholesterol levels, the more plaque that’s built up. This can narrow or block these essential blood pathways and helps explain why high cholesterol is associated with a greater risk of heart disease and stroke.

So, for the good of your health, let’s talk about what causes high levels of cholesterol. Ultimately, unhealthy lifestyle choices, genetics, and pre-existing health conditions can all be contributing factors. Here’s what you need to know.

How Is Breathing Secondhand Smoke Related To Heart Disease And Stroke

Coronary heart disease, clogged arteries and atherosclerosis

Breathing secondhand smoke also harms your health. Secondhand smoke is the smoke from burning tobacco products.9,11,12 Secondhand smoke also is smoke breathed out by a someone smoking.11,12

Breathing secondhand smoke can cause coronary heart disease and stroke.10,11,12 Know the facts:9

  • Secondhand smoke causes nearly 34,000 early deaths from coronary heart disease each year in the United States among nonsmokers.
  • Nonsmokers who breathe secondhand smoke at home or at work increase their risk of developing heart disease by 2530%. Secondhand smoke increases the risk for stroke by 2030%.
  • Each year, secondhand smoke exposure causes more than 8,000 deaths from stroke.
  • Breathing secondhand smoke interferes with the normal functioning of the heart, blood, and vascular systems in ways that increase your risk of having a heart attack.
  • Even briefly breathing secondhand smoke can damage the lining of blood vessels and cause your blood to become stickier. These changes can lead to a heart attack.

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Getting A Cholesterol Test

A blood sample is taken that will be used to determine the amount of bad cholesterol , good cholesterol and other fatty substances in your blood.

You may be asked not to eat for 10-12 hours before the cholesterol test, usually including when you’re asleep at night. This ensures that all food is completely digested and won’t affect the outcome of the test.

Your GP or practice nurse can carry out the cholesterol test and will take a blood sample, either using a needle and a syringe or by pricking your finger.

A newer type of test that measures non-high-density lipoprotein is now sometimes used because it’s thought to be a more accurate way of estimating cardiovascular disease risk than LDL.

Non-HDL cholesterol is total cholesterol minus HDL cholesterol. It’s also not necessary to fast before the test, so it is more convenient.

Becoming More Physically Active

A sedentary lifestyle lowers HDL cholesterol. Less HDL means theres less good cholesterol to remove bad cholesterol from your arteries.

Physical activity is important. At least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic exercise a week is enough to lower both cholesterol and high blood pressure. And you have lots of options: brisk walking, swimming, bicycling or even yard work can fit the bill.

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Poor Diet Can Cause High Cholesterol

“Eating saturated fat, found in animal products, and trans fats, found in some commercially baked cookies and crackers and microwave popcorn, can raise your cholesterol level,” says the Mayo Clinic. “Foods that are high in cholesterol, such as red meat and full-fat dairy products, will also increase your cholesterol.”

Does Marijuana Affect Ldl Cholesterol Levels

7 Cause of High Cholesterol that can seriously harm you ...

plawless over a year ago


cholesterolLDL over a year ago

over a year ago

In reply to cholesterolLDL on 2011-04-15 – click to read

over a year ago

In reply to cholesterolLDL on 2011-04-15 – click to read

over a year ago

In reply to cholesterolLDL on 2011-04-15 – click to read

34yearoldmale over a year ago

I am a 34 year old male, a longtime smoker, and my cholesterol has been so high for so long that I now take cholesterol medication. I am active, I eat right , but nothing brings my numbers down aside for medication. This would explain so much…

Guest over a year ago

Im a 23 year old medium/heavy marijuana smoker who eats poorly and doesnt get enough exercise. I had a biometric reading done the other day and i had an HDL reading of 71 and my total cholesterol was only 149. My father in law, who eats mostly bacon, is a very heavy marijuana user and is 52 years old, had similar readings when he was admitted into the hospital for a gall bladder issue. My point is, you cant blame pot, its mostly a genetic issue.

Guest over a year ago

Previous guest gets it mostly right. The only part of marijuana that effects your cholesterol levels is its tendency to drop blood sugars, causing you to get the munchies, which encourages you to eat less healthy food. If you’re not prone to high cholesterol, then you have nothing to worry about in the first place.

Just The Facts over a year ago

over a year ago

In reply to cholesterolLDL on 2011-04-15 – click to read

over a year ago


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